Real World Case: Trust and Relationship Building
Marcia feels as if she is not connecting with her mentee. During pre-planning, she immediately began helping her mentee with organizing the classroom and planning lessons for the first week of school. During her first observation, she noticed her mentee’s struggle with classroom management.
When they discussed the lesson during the post-planning conference, Marcia’s mentee felt that everything went extremely well. Marcia acknowledged her for a well-planned lesson, but when she tried to share some of her observation notes related to the students’ behavior, her mentee became upset and defensive. Marcia attempted to reassure her mentee by sharing her past experience of being a new teacher and she even offered to model a lesson the next day.
When she arrived the next day to conduct her model lesson, she noticed a “shift” in her mentee’s demeanor. During her lesson, her mentee graded papers rather than focusing her full attention on observing and note taking. Marcia wants to share how she is feeling about their relationship as well as her mentee’s inattentiveness. She is concerned, however, that if she brings this to her mentee’s attention, it will cause even more tension.
This module provides mentors with practical strategies and activities that can be used to develop and maintain collegial relationships with interns and beginning teachers.
After completing the entire Resources section and reviewing the accompanying activities for each cycle, you should be able to:
- Examine who you are as a mentor (Supervisory Beliefs Inventory in Being an Effective Mentor p. 164)
- Become familiar with the characteristics of adult learners (Podcast expert and module reading below: What You Need to Know About Adult Learning and Teacher Development
- Examine ways to establish rapport and build trust (Podcast expert Elizabeth Wilkins)
- Understand how to plan and conduct a “getting to know you” conversation (video/activity below)
- Explore common communication barriers (Podcast experts Podsen/Denmark)
- Understand the importance of matching verbal and nonverbal signals to avoid miscommunication