Chapter 4: How a mentor can support the new professional

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Section 2. Categories of support

Look at the following chart. Based on interview with new teachers, these categories of support were developed.

Descriptions of Categories of Support Derived from Questions Asked by First-Year Teachers
Support Category Description Example Question
Instructional Giving information about teaching strategies, the instructional process, or content. How do I utilize math manipulatives?
System Giving information related to procedures and guidelines of the school district. What tests does the district require I give children?
Resource Collecting, disseminating, or locating resources for use by the new teacher. Where do I find a terrarium for the science center?
Emotional Offering new teachers personal support through empathic listening and sharing experiences. How do I learn to be a good teacher and also have a life outside the classroom?
Managerial Managing and organizing the school day. How should I organize my week?
Parental Giving help and ideas related to conferencing or working with parents. How do I tell parents their child is not doing well?
Disciplinary Giving guidance and ideas related to managing children. What do I do? The kids are wild and I am desperate.

Permission for use granted by Sandra J. Odell, Western Michigan University.
Copyright 1988, Austin Educational Associates