Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Mentoring Matters

Lipton, L., Wellman, B., & Humbard, C. (2003).Mentoring matters: a practical guide to learning-focused relationships, 2nd edition. Sherman, CT: Mira Via.

Summary:  This book is almost a workbook of usable resources, references, and best practices for mentoring relationships with new teachers.  The focus of the book is on breaking down the components of a successful mentoring relationship in order for the "user" to assemble or improve their mentor skills.  The authors discuss the following topics in succinct, resource-packed sections:

  1. The Mentor's Role
  2. Learning-focused Interactions: A Continuum
  3. Maximizing Time and Attention
  4. Learning-Focused Verbal Tools
  5. Facilitating Professional Vision: from Novice to Expert Teaching
  6. Strategies for Success
  7. Appendix
  8. Structured Forms, Tools and Blacklines
  9. References and Resources
Evaluation:  This workbook is packed with usable tools: calendars, forms, sample journals, key ideas, rubrics and more.  The authors regularly reference outside sources and include extensive print and online resources.  Each chapter explains a component of mentoring and gets to the heart of what makes this component successful.

Reflection:  This book was critical to my development of a mentoring program for my school.  I used or modified many of the forms and templates to suit our needs and followed the suggested ideas for reflection journals, mentoring skills, and forms of/skills of communication.  This is an outstanding, to the point resource for anyone looking to improve their own or others' mentoring abilities.

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