What does a good mentor do? This is the sixth prompt in the 30-day Blogging Challenge. Over the course of my career, I’ve had many excellent mentors, and now I hope to be a good mentor to others. Here is a list of what I think are essential qualities of a good mentor, based on my experiences working with a few.
- Listen. Mentors must first and foremost know how to listen to their mentees. Sometimes a teacher needs to talk through a problem in order to find the solution. Sometimes they just need to let off steam. Mentors must be ready to listen.
- Be available. A good mentor needs to be accessible.
- Model. A good mentor should model good teaching. They should feel comfortable inviting a mentee into their classroom. They should also feel comfortable to model the process of what to do when a lesson fails.
- Provide feedback. One of the most important qualities of a good mentor is to give quality feedback to the mentee.
- Leave room for failure. We learn from our mistakes. A good mentor must let a mentee fail in order for them to learn from their mistakes. They should be available to help the mentee process what went wrong and how to make improvements.
I’m sure there are many other qualities of a good mentor, but these are among the most important for me.