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Modern Mentor: As modern mentors, how can we shift our practices as individuals or make widespread change happen in our systems? Mentoring is not the process of checking a box; it is the process of developing colleagues who eventually work alongside us in a challenging profession where collaboration, connection, and consistency are all so vital for our students. Having a menu of strategies will ensure knowing exactly what you will get! The goal of this book is to showcase ways to develop mentoring programs, designed to assist teachers in becoming strong mentors and to assist new teachers in getting the most out of their mentoring relationship.
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Unlike professionals who work in the private sector, teachers spend most of the day with children in classrooms. Yes a teachers’ job is to be in front of students. However, as a profession we should be working tirelessly to find new ways for educators to work together when students are not in front of them. Creating collaborative opportunities will reduce the feeling of working in a silo.In the teaching profession, the word silo usually references a teacher who becomes isolated in their own classroom or academic subject and consequently experiences little to no interaction with colleagues. This lack of interaction can stunt professional growth and become a detriment to student learning. Some teachers prefer to work unsupervised and uninterrupted. This singular mindset creates the silos and isolation and sometimes breeds an intimidating culture in the school. Teachers benefit and grow from sharing and learning from each other. Think about what we tell our students to do when they have a question: “Ask three before me” or “Work with a partner.” We need to empower and encourage educators to do the same. Teachers and administrators, do you collaborate when you have a question or want support?Isolation can be detrimental to one’s professional development. By interacting with colleagues in our own or other fields, we can gain new insights. We can also share ideas and experiences that will improve our teaching. This book focuses on practical strategies and solutions to increase collaboration and enhance a school culture.