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Active Mentor Rubric

Purpose of this tool : Charlotte Danielson writes, ”…the ability to reflect on teaching is the mark of a true professional. Through reflection, real growth and therefore excellence are possible.” Just a effective teaching is a set of learned skills, so is mentoring. And, just as professional reflection is how teachers grow, it is also true of mentors.

This tool is designed for self-reflection on the part of the mentor. It delineates many of the expectations and skills needed by mentors who wish to be most effective in providing support for beginning teachers.

How to use this tool : This Active Mentor Rubric can be used in a variety of ways. Initially it was designed as a self-reflection tool for mentors of beginning teachers. To be used in this way, mentors simply read the qualifiers for each of the Mentor Expectations and reflect on which most accurately describes them as a mentor. It is our wish that mentors could see themselves in the “Involved” or “Actively Involved” descriptors on the rubric. This being the case, a mentor could feel assured that he or she is providing adequate to exemplary support for the beginning teacher. A mentor may also use the rubric to “score” their current mentoring practices using the points on the rubric. Directions for this are included. A scale is also provided that helps a mentor determine his or her level of active mentoring practices.

Mentors who find themselves more accurately described in the “Buddy System” or “Non-involved” descriptors might begin to look at mentoring I a new light, reflecting on how they may begin to make improvements in the mentor relationship they are establishing with the beginning teacher. Mentors who find themselves in this situation, might begin to seek out professional development in the form mentor training to assist them in developing appropriate mentoring skills. Mentor might opt for reflecting on the rubric individually or with the beginning teacher.

The Active Mentor Rubric can also be used as a tool to establish mentor expectations prior to a mentor agreeing to serve as support for beginning teachers. As mentors are being screened or interviewed, the rubric could serve as a guideline for the expected amount of involvement a mentor program will place on the mentor.

Beginning teachers might also be able to benefit from the Active Mentor Rubric tool. The rubric, when used as a tool for beginning teachers, is NOT intended as a means for evaluation of their mentor. However, as they look over the expectations of a mentor, they begin to see that, in order for his or her mentor to be “Actively Involved”, he or she must make themselves available to receive assistance and support. For example, if I want my mentor to be actively involved, I must be able and willing to meet regularly and engage in professional, reflective conversation, be willing to be observed and participate in post observation feedback sessions, as well as be prepared to answer my own questions when the mentor engages me in solving my own problems.

A final use of the rubric could be as guide for designing mentor training. Each of the mentor expectations on the rubric is a learnable, practicable skill. Professional development could be designed to help mentors acquire and practice the knowledge and skills necessary to become an “Actively Involved Mentor”.

Active Mentor Rubric

Mentor Expectations

Actively Involved Mentor

10 Points

Involved Mentor

7 Points

Buddy System Mentor

5 Points

Non-involved Mentor

2 Points

Availability

The mentor is always available to the new teacher.  The mentor frequently initiates contact with the new teacher. Regular mentor sessions are planned.

The mentor is usually available whenever the new teacher had concerns.  The mentor initiates several contacts with the new teacher.

The mentor is often available whenever the new teacher had concerns. The mentor initiates some contact with the new teacher.

The mentor is rarely available to meet with the new teacher. The mentor initiates no contact with the new teacher.

Problem Solving

The mentor frequently leads the new teacher into discovering possible solutions to problems on his or her own through asking questions and making suggestions. Occasionally, the mentor includes reference to how he or she would handle the situation.

The mentor suggests several ideas or possible solutions to the new teacher. The mentor occasionally leads the new teacher into discovering solutions and answers on his or her own by asking questions of the new teacher.

The mentor suggests several ideas or possible solutions to the new teacher. When asked for advice, the mentor often explains how he or she would handle the situation.

 

When asked for advice, the mentor exclusively tries to solve problems by telling the new teacher how he or she would have handled the situation.

Reflective Questions

The mentor frequently takes the opportunity to ask reflective questions of the new teacher. The mentor utilizes reflective questioning skills to invite the new teacher to look at his or her teaching practices with an eye for improvement. The mentor models *The Learning Cycle.

The mentor asks questions to clarify the actions of the new teacher and occasionally takes the opportunity to ask reflective questions of the new teacher. The mentor often modeled the *Learning Cycle in his or her own teaching.

The mentor asks questions to clarify the actions of the teacher but infrequently extended the questioning to include reflection on teaching practices. There is no reference to the *Learning Cycle in mentoring sessions.

The mentor does not invite the new teacher to reflect on his or her teaching. No attempt is made to have the new teacher think about his or her teaching practices. The mentor imparts his or her knowledge rather than asking questions.

 

 

Actively Involved Mentor

10 Points

Involved Mentor

7 Points

Buddy System Mentor

5 Points

Non-involved Mentor

2 Points

Confidentiality

The mentor is sensitive to and closely adheres to the “Firewall” between mentoring and evaluation. Topics and discussion from mentoring sessions are not shared with other staff or administration. Classroom observation notes become the sole property of the new teacher following reflective conferences.

The mentor closely adheres to the “Firewall” between mentoring and evaluation. Topics and discussion from mentoring sessions are not shared with other staff or administration. Classroom observation notes become the sole property of the new teacher following reflective conferences.

 

 

The mentor adheres to the “Firewall” between mentoring and evaluation. Topics and discussion from mentoring sessions are not shared with other staff or administration.

The mentor is unfamiliar with the “Firewall” between mentoring and evaluation. Topics and discussion from mentoring sessions are shared with other staff or administration inappropriately.

Feedback

The mentor engages in observing the new teacher's classroom on several occasions. The mentor provides positive peer coaching feedback that is specific and evidence based in a timely manner. The feedback is designed to increase the new teacher's teaching skills by reinforcing “Best Practices” that are observed. Feedback also includes reflective questions centered on areas for improvement.

The mentor engages in observing the new teacher's classroom at least once each semester. The mentor provides positive peer coaching feedback that was specific and evidence based in a timely manner. The feedback is designed to increase the new teacher's teaching skills by reinforcing “Best Practices” that are observed. Feedback also includes reflective questions centered on areas for improvement.

Feedback for the new teacher is based on information gathered without classroom observation. The mentor provides positive feedback, reinforcing “Best Practices”.

Feedback to the new teacher is not based on classroom observations or contact with the new teacher. Feedback consists mostly of the mentor telling how he or she would handle a situation.

Encouragement

The Mentor encourages the new teacher to try new things, expand his or her teaching skills and become actively involved with students, parents and staff. The mentor models a positive attitude toward the school, the district and the community at large. The encouragement to succeed is genuine.

The Mentor encouraged the new teacher to try new things, expand his or her teaching skills and become actively involved with students, parents and staff. The mentor modeled a positive attitude toward the school, the district and the community at large. The encouragement to succeed is genuine.

The mentor encourages the new teacher to keep up his or her hard work and efforts. The encouragement is genuine.

The mentor provides little or no encouragement to the new teacher.

 

 

Actively Involved Mentor

10 Points

Involved Mentor

7 Points

Buddy System Mentor

5 Points

Non-involved Mentor

2 Points

Knowledge of Content

The Mentor demonstrates an in depth understanding of content, pedagogy and student standards. The mentor actively interprets how the content can be put into practice in the classroom using effective pedagogy for all students.

The Mentor demonstrates a solid understanding of content, pedagogy and student standards. The mentor occasionally interprets how the content can be put into practice in the classroom using effective pedagogy.

 

 

The Mentor demonstrates a range of understanding content, pedagogy and student standards. The mentor rarely interprets how the content can be put into practice in the classroom using effective pedagogy, unless asked.

The mentor does not demonstrate an understanding of content or pedagogy, although they may actually possess it. The mentor puts no effort into assisting in understanding the subject or structure of the discipline.

Technology

The mentor frequently utilizes information age learning and technology to enhance the mentoring experience.

The mentor often utilizes information age learning and technology to enhance the mentoring experience.

The mentor has the ability to utilize information age learning and technology in the mentoring experience when asked.

The mentor’s ability to utilize information age learning and technology to in the mentoring experience is not evident.

Managing Student Learning

The mentor can effectively manage and monitor student learning for ALL students, can systematically organize lessons and frequently offers assistance.

The mentor can effectively manage and monitor student learning for ALL students, can systematically organize lessons and often offers assistance.

The mentor can effectively manage and monitor student learning, can systematically organize lessons and offers assistance when asked.

The mentor’s management and monitoring of student learning isn’t evident to the mentee.

* The “Learning Cycle” is adapted from W.E. Deming, Out of the Crisis, Massachusetts Institute of Technology Center for Advanced Engineering, (1986) The Cycle refers to

Plan

Apply

Teach

Reflect

Purpose:

The purpose of the Active Mentor Rubric is for teachers who serve as mentors for other teachers to self-reflect on the type of service and support they are providing. Through self-reflection, the mentor is able to determine how his or her approach to mentoring aligns with the standards of an active mentor. Teachers who are new to mentoring with other teachers can use the rubric as a guide for planning appropriate mentor involvement. When a mentor asks, “What do I do as a mentor?” the rubric can serve as a blueprint for involvement.

The purpose of the rubric is for self-reflection and as guide for mentor involvement, not as an evaluative tool for beginning teachers to evaluate mentors. However, beginning teachers may benefit from using the Active Mentor Rubric as a guide for their involvement in the mentoring process. The beginning teacher must be aware of the extensive role the mentor is playing in his or her development and be available and receptive to this level of support from a mentor.

Directions:

For Mentors

  • Read each description on the rubric for each mentor expectation. (Read across the rows of the rubric.)
  • Determine which description most accurately defines the characteristics of the mentor practices that you are currently exhibiting as you work with a beginning teacher.
  • Draw a ring around no more than one description that best describes yourself in each row on the rubric. Be sure to only select one description for each of the rows on the rubric for scoring purposes.
  • Once you have chosen one of the descriptions from each row on the rubric, tally up the points for the columns and determine the total score. Use the scoring information below to determine your involvement level in the Mentor Project.

Total Score

54-60 points = Actively Involved Mentor

38-53 points = Involved Mentor

28-37 points = Buddy System Mentor

2-27 points = Non-involved mentor

0 points = There was no mentor.

 

Directions:

For Beginning Teachers

  • Read each description on the rubric for each mentor expectation. Notice how much time and effort will be required for a mentor to be high involved with you as a beginning teacher.
  • Think about ways that you will benefit from the support of an active or highly active mentor. Consider how much time and effort will be required of you to be available to receive the most support. For example, in order for a mentor to provide the highest quality feedback on “Best Practices”, beginning teachers need to commit to having their mentor observing in the classroom and to the time required to hold a conference following the observation.
  • This “Active Mentor Rubric” is not intended as an evaluation tool to be applied to a mentor by a beginning teacher.

 

Developed by R. Willobee, Grand Rapids Public Schools.  Revised March 2, 2006.