Santa Cruz/Silicon Valley New Teacher Project – Mentor Support

What You Can Expect from Your Mentor

Your Mentor is prepared to support you, as a Participating Teacher, in a variety of ways over course of the year. Your own learning needs, the time of the year, unexpected situations and demands at the school site are just a few of the factors that will influence your work together. In addition, your Mentor will support you in completing program requirements.

To make the most of this unique professional development opportunity, think about how your Mentor can best support your professional growth and your students’ learning before each meeting. Use the following list to spark your imagination, and ask for the type of assistance you want.

Engaging and Supporting All Students in Learning

The Mentor can:

  • Model specific teaching strategies (whole class, small group)
  • Provide demonstration lessons
  • Facilitate whole class or small group discussion
  • Monitor or facilitate learning stations
  • Work with/assess/observe individual students
  • Co-teach
  • Observe you teach and provide feedback
  • Videotape lessons for reflection
  • Arrange for you to observe veteran colleagues

Creating and Maintaining Effective Environments for Student Learning

The Mentor can:

  • Help establish standards for student behavior
  • Co-plan routines and procedures for:
    • Homework, paperwork, classroom jobs, etc.
    • Entering and leaving the classroom
    • Distribution and care of supplies and equipment
  • Provide resources, knowledge and/or demonstration of:
    • Prevention strategies
    • Intervention strategies
    • Motivational systems
    • Conflict resolution strategies
  • Help build student cooperation and responsibility
  • Promote equity, fairness and respect in the classroom
  • Assist to develop independent, self-directed learners
  • Help organize your classroom
    • Room arrangement
    • Seating
    • Bulletin Boards
    • Materials and supplies
    • Resources

Understanding and Organizing Subject Matter for Student Learning

The Mentor can help:

  • Provide subject-specific resources, knowledge and information
  • Connect you with veteran colleagues for content-specific resources
  • Identify key concepts and themes and connect those to the students’ lives
  • Interrelate key concepts across subject matter areas
  • Organize and sequence the curriculum
  • Provide resources for English Learners and Students with Special Needs

Planning Instruction and Designing Learning Experiences for All Students

The Mentor can assist you to:

  • Design lesson plans and units that are:
    • Standards-based
    • Aligned with district frameworks and texts
    • Connected to broader, culturally responsive themes
    • Interrelated across subject matter areas
    • Assessment driven

  • Differentiate for diverse student learning needs
  • Develop flexible groups
  • Utilize technology and media
  • Meet the needs of English Learners and special population students
  • Use a variety of instructional strategies
  • Engage students in problem solving and critical thinking

Assessing Students for Learning

The Mentor can assist you to:

  • Design differentiated assessments
  • Use multiple sources of information for grading
  • Involve students in assessing their own learning
  • Analyze student work
  • Assess language development
  • Use the results of assessments to guide instruction
  • Implement and/or score district wide assessments
  • Prepare for standardized testing
  • Develop grading systems
  • Prepare report cards
  • Plan parent conferences

Developing as a Professional Educator

The Mentor can provide support for:

  • Reflecting on teaching practice and planning professional development
  • Establishing professional goals
  • Balancing professional responsibilities and maintaining motivation

The Mentor can support effective communication with:

  • Parents and families
  • Site and district administrators
  • Colleagues
  • Resource personnel
  • Support staff
  • Community resources

The Mentor can help you plan:

  • Back-to-School Night
  • Parent conferences
  • Home visits
  • Field trips
  • Open House
  • School programs/assemblies
  • Substitute plans