2.3 Focus on building a positive relationship with your mentee
The most effective mentors build positive relationships with beginner teachers and provide support for emotional wellbeing. They help beginner teachers to feel welcome, accepted and included within their wider school community. It is true that mentors have an important role to play in assessing the beginner teacher’s progress in relation to regulatory requirements such as professional standards. But, if too much focus is placed on the role of ‘assessor’ early in the mentor-mentee relationship, tension can be caused. Focus on establishing a solid relationship built on trust, in which you provide a safe environment for learning and risk-taking in the initial stages (Lofthouse, 2018). Take care not to overwhelm your beginner teacher with too much feedback in the early stages, or to make it too critical: focus on what they can do and on giving a few clear targets that they can achieve.