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What do you want from your mentor?

Discussion in 'New teachers' started by tennyson, Aug 25, 2011.

  1. As a mentor to two NQTs in September, I would like to ask what you will be expecting/hoping for from your mentor. I am planning to drop in informally, on a regular basis, to see how things are going , but don't want them to think I'm checking up on them. What do you think?
     
  2. As a mentor to two NQTs in September, I would like to ask what you will be expecting/hoping for from your mentor. I am planning to drop in informally, on a regular basis, to see how things are going , but don't want them to think I'm checking up on them. What do you think?
     
  3. Depends what your regular basis is:S I would want someone who has trust, someone who can work along side me to work on my goals and targets. Also someone who treats me like a teacher not like a student.
     
  4. I want to strike a balance between support and advice and allowing them to feel free to try things.
     
  5. I don't want the obs to be too regular. It puts too much pressure on. Pop in as often as possible, but after school and during free periods. I also think obs too regular would suggest a lack of trust and confidence.
     
  6. Also, if I felt I needed extra obs to check my progress, I would ask.
     
  7. minnieminx

    minnieminx New commenter

    I don't do that at all for my NQTs. I don't think it is fair on the NQT and I'd hate my line manager to do that to me. I assume they can teach and that things will be fine unless they say so. They also have a year team colleague who would let me know of any serious problems.

    I pop in before school on the first day (and generally leave a card in their pigeon hole) and say good luck. I'll then make sure I catch them at lunchtime and make sure they come to the staffroom and have a break. And then go back again at the end of the day to say well done.

    I then just make sure I try and see them to at least say hello at least once a day for the rest of the first week. If they aren't in the staffroom at lunchtime I nip along and see if they are ok. Sometimes they are just a little later than me.

    I'm primary and get their phase leader to do break duty with the NQT for the first couple of weeks, just so they get the idea of routines about bells and lining up. (I can't do it as I'm never in their phase and so we have different breaks.)

    After that it is just about being really friendly and smiley (even on my bad days) and at least once a week having a sit down chat. Observation as and when they need to be done, or when asked.

    Also I keep checking they do get their extra NQT time every single week and argue their case with SMT should anything be needed.
     
  8. I think that sounds pretty good:)
     
  9. I'm primary at I'm certain my mentor is going to be brilliant, she has been so far.
    I think what I want from her is to be someone who doesn't mind when I ask numerous stupid questions about things whilst I'm settling in. I would also hope that anyone mentoring has a positive outlook on teaching so she sees points that can be developed rather than addressing 'weakness' in practice.
    I would hope that we can have a trusting and positive relationship where I can express concerns, if/when I have any, in a confidential/ safe environment and where they won't be in any way ridiculed or used against me.
    Finally I would like to be respected as being a practitioner in my own right, who can have good ideas and bring something worthwhile to the table.
    I might be asking for the moon on a stick, but I hope not!!!!
     
  10. katnoodle

    katnoodle New commenter

    I'd echo what's already been said, especially being seen as a teacher, not a student. I'd also want to feel like I could ask my mentor anything, even if it seems daft. Also I'd want to feel like (s)he always had time for me - not immediately of couse, but able to pencil me in if there's something fairly urgent bugging me.
     
  11. minnieminx

    minnieminx New commenter

    And your mentor would obviously do her best to provide this for you at any time you need it! :)

    Oh and sod being professional...sometimes an NQT just needs a hug/cuddle and some of the sweeties from the class sweetie tin!
     
  12. Thanks for the advice - I know what you mean about dropping in not being a good idea. I wouldn't like it either! I just want to be visible and supportive, and your ideas for that are spot on.
     
  13. I must perfect my red eyed look then..... sweeties...!!!! xx
     
  14. I think you sound like a great mentor and I would love you to be mine. My mentor is going to be the head. I'm so nervous, not really had a chance to speak to him at all since transition day and that was just general stuff with the other nqt. Am feeling very sick about next week at the moment!!!
     
  15. minnieminx

    minnieminx New commenter

    Then make friends with other staff as soon as you can! No way do you want to be crying in the head's office, however nice he is! (I make it a rule to only do that once a term...and sulkiness twice at most!)

    But you will find other people who will help and support you day to day. I promise you will! and for everything else there is the TES!
     
  16. minnieminx - you sound like you've had lots of experience. Thanks for your input and suggestions. I am so keen for them to do well and enjoy their first year and I don't want to do anything to jeopardise it.
     
  17. minnieminx

    minnieminx New commenter

    Aww you won't tennyson. Just be nice to them and make sure the paperwork that needs to be sent off is sent and you'll be done!
     
  18. ballerina

    ballerina New commenter

    Interesting thread. I'm a mentor again this year, one of my previous mentees is a good friend of mine now and she said that she liked it that i dropped in so regularly because when it came to formal observations (from any staff member) she wasnt nervous at all
     
  19. Thanks minnieminx. All the staff seem lovely and 5 were nqts last year so I'm sure they will be helpful too. And thank the lord for TES!!!
     
  20. I've just finished my NQT Year, here's what I loved and didn't love so much about my mentor.

    Loved: she was extremely friendly in the staff room (made it easier when I was very new), she did most of my paperwork for me (including memorably translating my scrawled lesson observation notes onto a form - above and beyond!), was incredibly supportive when I had troubles with another senior member of staff, was always there when I needed something, and finally, encouraged me to take risks and offer extra-curricula stuff!

    Not love so much: weekly meetings were fairly obsolete after the first half term (but we had them anyway), randomly checking my reports (even when I said I hadn't finished them). Not entirely sure how much I told her she told others... That worried me.

    In conclusion, I suppose it depends on the NQT, but I liked my autonomy, but having her there as a supportive co-worker was useful, would have been nice to be assured that my criticisms were between the two of us.
     

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