Chapter 4: How a mentor can support the new professional

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Section 5. Styles of mentoring

The tables below outline some of the different styles of mentoring. Notice that there is not a right or wrong style. Each style has its benefits and limitation. Each new professional may have a preference for the style of mentoring they would like best. Given logistical constraints such as where the mentor lives in relationship to the new professional, the amount of time each have for the relationship, etc. And of course, each mentor is going to have her or his own style that is the most comfortable.


RESPONDER
Description Encourages Beginning Teacher to ask for assistance when requested in areas of concern.
Requirements Master Teacher who is wiling to help; Beginning Teacher who trusts the Master Teacher enough to ask for help.
Outcomes Beginning Teacher gets help with major areas of concern.
Limitations Many of the day-to-day problems not dealt with constructively.

Colleague
Description Frequently initiates informal visits with Beginning Teacher and when Beginning Teacher expresses a concern or problem, provides assistance related to area of concern.
Requirements Stronger personal relationship develops between Beginning Teacher and Master Teacher; Beginning Teacher gets substantial help with identified areas of concern.
Outcomes Beginning Teacher gets help with major areas of concern.
Limitations Extent of professional growth determined by Beginning Teacher who has limited experience and view of effective teaching.

Initiator
Description Accepts a responsibility to facilitate the professional growth of the Beginning Teacher to the greatest degree possible.   In addition to providing assistance when requested, regularly makes suggestions to Beginning Teacher to promote growth.
Requirements Substantial teacher expertise on part of Master Teacher; strong rapport between Master Teacher and Beginning Teacher; Master Teacher must have opportunity to observe teaching of Beginning Teacher.
Outcomes Beginning Teacher gets benefit of the expertise of the Master Teacher; Master Teacher experiences professional growth as well as Beginning Teacher.
Limitations Extent of professional growth limited only by the potential of Beginning Teacher and the mentoring expertise of Master Teacher/

Based in part on the concept of Change Facilitator Style ( c.f. , Hall, G.E., Rutherford, W.L., Hord, S.M., & Huling, L.L., 1984)

Copyright 1998, Austin Educational Associates

Which style do you think reflects your own? Do you have more than one style?

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