As the need for mentoring programs grows, the need for identifying and preparing good mentors also grows. A teacher’s first year in the classroom can be extremely difficult and scary. Having a mentor by your side can make a world of difference. Of course, that world of difference will only happen if your mentor has the qualities of a good mentor. If you have been given the honor of being someone’s mentor for the upcoming school year, the following article The Good Mentor by James Rowley discusses important qualities a mentor should poseess. Rowley prescribes the following as necessary components for building a successful and effective mentoring program in any district: A mentor should be committed to the role of mentoring, accepting of the new teacher, provide encouragement and instructional support, communicates hope and optimism, and a good mentor is a model of a continuous learner.
The following The Mentor’s Checklist is a wonderful tool for a mentor to use. You can take this checklist just as it is or you can modify it to meet your needs. It lays out ideas of topics you may want to touch upon each month with your mentee.
Mentoring can be a very successful and rewarding program for both the mentor and the new teacher. I am sure there are many who have had the experience of working with a wonderful mentor, while others may want to forget their mentor. Please share these good or bad mentorship experiences with us.