Learn about the different components of Whetstone's Observation tool, as well as how to start and finalize an Observation.
Please note: This article applies to all observers.
Whetstone's Observation tool allows users to coach and evaluate one another using the forms/rubrics determined by your school or district leaders.
Start an Observation from the Start Menu
To begin an observation from the Start Menu, click on Start then Observe.
Use the search box to find the user you'd like to observe. Click on their name. Then, use the dropdown on the next pop-up to select the rubric or form you'd like to use for your observation.
Fill out an Observation Form
At the top of your draft observation, you'll see Observation Details. This section is used to specify the School, Date, and other observation details such as Grade or Observation Type.
Many forms have a Running Record in the left column, to take timestamped observation notes. Type a note then click enter on your keyboard to save.
Running record notes are hidden from the observee by default. Visibility can be adjusted via the eye symbol next to an individual note, or by clicking Make All Private or Make All Shared. Shared notes will have a peach background and can be seen by the observee. Private notes are hidden from the observee, and can only be seen by users who have access to the observee.
You may choose to use @ and # symbols to organize your notes. You can use @ to track people in the room, and # to track things like school values or teaching strategies.
Your observation form may contain scored rows in which you select a specific rating, such as 3 - Effective, in the screenshot below.
Click the Plus Sign to see detailed scoring guidance, and/or additional information. If a bulleted item turns blue when you hover over it, click to insert the text in the text-box below.
Your form may also contain text-based questions. A peach background indicates the text will be shared with the observee, while a white background indicates the text will only be seen by observers who have access to the observee's account.
Pro Tip: Click the list icon next to any question to see previous notes that have been recorded for this observee on this question.
Some forms also contain questions for which you're prompted to select an option from a dropdown.
If your form has a checkbox component, you may select as many items as are applicable
Some forms have fields where observers are prompted to record a percentage, as in the screenshot below. Simply type a number between 0 and 100 to complete this type of question.
If your form has an Action Items section, you can view all active and mastered action items (i.e. Action Steps, Goals, To-Dos) and can assign new action items by clicking the Green Plus Sign. Note that the observee will receive a notification as soon as a new action item is assigned.
Pro Tip: Click the comment bubble to provide feedback on a specific action item.
Many forms contain a section where the observer may choose to attach external files. Click Add File to select a file from your computer, add a link to an online resource, or select a file you've previously uploaded to Whetstone (see second screenshot below). Click Add From Resource Library to select a file from your school or district's Resource Library.
Link a Video
As an observer, you may also choose to attach a video to your observation. This could be an exemplar video for the teacher to review, or could be evidence of the lesson you're observing. Click Add New Video to upload a new video, or Add Existing Video to select from a list of videos you've already uploaded to Whetstone.
Finalize an Observation
To finalize an observation, click Finalize in the lower right corner of the page. Then on the pop-up, select Finalize and Notify Teacher to send an email notification to the observee, or Finalize to complete without sending a notification.
Click here to begin an interactive walkthrough!
Do you need more information?
Click the Support and Feedback button or email us at email@example.com