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Monday, July 13, 2009

The Mentor Constructive Negative and Corrective Feedback Conference (*Hunter and Russell, 1989)

The mentor gives the mentee constructive negative and corrective feedback. This type of feedback conference is especially suited for pre-service, novice, and beginning teachers.

Objective of the Post-Observation Feedback Conference: To assess the lesson taught by the mentee.

Assumption: The mentor and the mentee have concluded their preliminary introductory remarks.

Sample Dialogue Between the Mentor Teacher (MT) and the Mentee (M)

MT: “Mrs. Keller, I very much appreciate that you are a first year teacher, and acknowledge that one of the most pressing concerns of beginning teachers is classroom management. Having said that, I must say that I am disappointed by the fact that it took eight minutes for you to begin instruction today. This is not acceptable.”

M: “I hear you loud and clear, Dr. Solomon; I have tried your quiet signal, my own quiet signal, and nothing works. What should I to do?”

MT: “Well there are several things you can do. Let me suggest a few. You can conduct a classroom meeting on this matter. You can invite me to facilitate a classroom meeting for your class. You can call the parents of the students who most disrupt your classroom. You can change all the students' seats. This problem is something that you must learn to solve as a beginning teacher. I have given you a number of suggestions. I believe the easiest ones to implement are contacting the parents, changing everyone’s seat, and conducting a classroom meeting.”

M: “Okay, Dr. Solomon, let’s say I call the parents of the disruptive students and change everyone’s seat, but how do I conduct a classroom meeting? I don’t even know what that is.”

MT: “A classroom meeting requires a change in your lesson plan. Here’s how it’s done. You tell your students to take their chairs and form a circle. You then explain that today’s lesson will be a classroom meeting on what students are expected to do when instruction begins. You ask your students to identify what they should be doing when you signal that instruction is about to start. You record their suggestions on the board, and gain agreement on what students will do. After you end this classroom meeting, you practice giving the signal that instruction is about to begin. Then you time how long it takes students to stop talking. When you’re satisfied that your students have internalized your quiet signal, you begin instruction. Now, Mrs. Keller would you like me to facilitate the classroom meeting, or would you like to do it yourself? I have no problem conducting the classroom meeting for your class. What is your preference?”

M: “I’ll contact the parents of the most disruptive students, and change everyone’s seat. If these changes don’t solve the problem, I’ll conduct a classroom meeting myself. Would you be willing to attend the class while I’m facilitating that classroom meeting? If I need help you can step in.”

MT: “That’s fine with me. Please let me know by next week how things are progressing for you.”

M: “I definitely will.”

* Hunter, M. & Russell, D. (1989). Mastering Coaching and Supervision. El Segundo, CA: TIP Publications.

On the next post we will explore the Mentee Constructive Negative and Corrective Feedback Conference .

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