Meant to Mentor
What are the Qualities of an Effective Mentor?
- Be a friend.
- Have realistic goals and expectations.
- Have fun together.
- Give your mentee voice and choice in deciding on activities.
- Be positive.
- Let your mentee have much of the control over what the two of you talk about—and how you talk about it.
- Respect the trust your mentee places in you.
- Remember that you are responsible for building the relationship.
Here are a few activities that Mentors and Mentees can do together:
- Go with your mentee to the school's library or media center and check out the headlines of the latest newspapers from around the country.
- Ask how they are doing in school.
- Research and talk about famous people who used their abilities to get ahead.
- Make greeting, get-well, or holiday cards to give to other people.
- Bring a board game.
- Look at a map and talk about places you would like to visit.
- Set personal goals.
- Play sports in the gymnasium. (If school allows)
- Work on the computer or an iPad in the media center.
- Write stories together.
- Do a jigsaw puzzle.
- Build a model.
- Bring in a photo album, and share pictures of your family, house, and pets.
- Discuss favorite hobbies.
- Read the same book and talk about your favorite parts.
- Write a letter to a former teacher, a cousin or relative in another community, an old friend, the editor of a local newspaper, etc.
- Ask the questions for the driver's license test.
- Listen, listen, listen.
- Ask about a book they’re reading. “Is this book for school or pleasure reading?” . . . “Why did you choose it?” . . . “Would you recommend it?” . . . “What’s your favorite book?”
- Tell them about something you’re reading, what you like about it, and what you don’t.
- Read a good book together. Take a trip to the library, and pick out one to share. Maybe read every other chapter out loud to each other.
- Ask to read a report or story they’ve recently written or a drawing they’ve done. Make positive comments, mention at least one thing you learned from it, and ask questions related to the material.
- Find out when their birthdays are, and send birthday cards. Enclose a home-made coupon for a mentor lunch get-together.