As a Teacher Consultant, my ‘go-to’ resource for planning dynamic and engaging sessions has been, Bruce Wellman’s Groups at Work. Our team uses this as a guide to shape our sessions.
Last fall our goal for mentoring was to foster effective and positive mentoring relationships. The goal was two-fold: to support our new teachers and to develop leadership capacity within our experienced ranks.
We began our first mentoring session with only the beginning teachers by ‘Speed Dating’. We asked them to share with each partner: What they were excited about as they began their new careers? and What they were anxious or wondering about? This was a fun and relaxing warm-up and helped everyone quickly get to know each other.
Then we delved into the beginning teacher/mentor relationship by asking:
- What makes a good beginning teacher/mentor relationship?
- What are your expectations of a mentor?
- What can or should the Mentor expect of the Beginning Teacher?
They did an individual private write and shared this with their table group. We then shared in popcorn style around the room.
Next each table was asked to create an ad for their ideal mentor.
The results were fabulous.
We were impressed with their enthusiastic engagement and deep conversations as they crafted their ads. They clearly knew what was important in a mentor. They posted their ads and shared out with the whole group. The what-next piece was challenging them to find a mentor that met their needs.
Their ticket-out was to rank the top 3 Burning Issues that they wanted help addressing: