NQT Induction: How to make the most of your mentor

Your mentor is the person who will support, monitor and assess you during your first year of teaching.  They will help you demonstrate that you are meeting the Teachers’ Standards and can pass induction.  It is really important that you have an effective working relationship with them because they will help you be successful and have a positive first year.

Arrange to meet with your mentor regularly, so that you can have a proper chat with them, without distractions, about how you are getting on.  Initially, these meetings can take place weekly whilst you are getting used to your school.

Take time at the start of the year to talk through the whole induction year with your mentor, so that you know what is coming up each term and can plan your time effectively. 

Work with your tutor to agree how best to use your reduced timetable during the year.  Don’t use this time for marking and planning: it is for your professional development.

Try to be open and honest with your mentor about your areas for improvement.  They can support you to improve in these areas.  Work with your mentor to draw up an action plan for each term so that you know what your targets are and how to meet them.  Ask your mentor for help with meeting these targets.

You could ask your mentor to informally observe you on a regular basis and to give you feedback about a specific aspect of your teaching that you want to focus on, e.g. the start of lessons. Arrange to team-teach, or to jointly plan a lesson with your mentor and spend time discussing how this went after the lesson.

Use your mentor’s experience for help with things like managing your marking and planning.  They will have ways of organising administrative tasks that will save you time.

Be proactive about seeking opportunities to develop your teaching and discuss with your mentor how you can do this e.g. visits to other departments/key stages/schools.

Don’t be afraid to ask for help if you are struggling.  Colleagues may have noticed and if you don’t tell them it can look as though you are not bothered.

Most people have a really positive relationship with their mentor, but if this is not the case for you, speak to your school’s induction coordinator or your Headteacher about changing your mentor to someone who can support you effectively.

We wish you the best of luck starting at your new school! 

Find out the 10 Top Tips to a Successful NQT Induction.

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