The first mentor meeting already came and went. In an odd coincidental manner, we were able to schedule all the meetings for the students on the same day, at three different times. In this way, as PYP coordinator, I am able to go drop in the meetings, the homeroom teachers have an easier time organizing their day and the mentors all know it's always going to be on the same day, except when they decide to meet more.
Actually, I reluctantly decided not to be a mentor this year, in order to better support the mentors. I was kind of sad last week when the first meetings were about to take place....until I found out one of the mentors had to leave school to go to the doctor and another one had an emergency meeting of some sort...so two groups were without mentors... I was thus able to meet with them and help them clarify their thinking, focus their discussions and always keep in mind the central idea. The group of boys I worked with were almost begging me to become their mentors, as I let it slip I had worked with several groups last year.
From what I gather, the first meeting was a success, the students had really started thinking about their topics, had brainstormed what they knew and even started finding resources. We focussed on getting them to articulate what they saw as most important in order to have them come up with their lines of inquriry. Some groups also had time to start looking at teh key concepts and write questions for some. Of course, they are at the beginning of the process and their questions are still rough, but it helps them figure out what they want to know in order to gather their resources.
Tomorrow, we are alreay having the second meeting. On the agenda this week is
- Cover key concepts questions in discussion
- Examine ways in which to find answers to these questions
- Students and Mentor discuss and examine “Issues” in the Issues Analysis page
- Talk about and perhaps begin filling in “My Research” pages, remembering to commence “Works Cited” with every entry.
- Refer them back to the central idea and ask them what information they’ve found that can support the central idea.
- Remember to move them away from just researching on their topic, but encourage them to think of the impact on future generations.
- Complete the second Mentor Meeting Record Sheet in your Mentor Log
I will let you know how this one goes...