Mentoring Student Teachers

Teaching, Teachers
Curated By
Paige Menne

Paige Menne is a teacher from Pearland, Texas with a specialty in gifted and talented students. Paige graduated from Texas A&M University in 2018 with her Bachelor’s Degree in Interdisciplinary Studies and a teaching certification in EC-6 Elementary Education. Paige's contributions to Encourage X focus on the values of family, teaching careers, and overcoming social issues. In her spare time, Paige enjoys spending time with her family and friends, and creating arts and crafts for her classroom.

They Might Be Thinking:

  • What if our personalities do not mesh well?
  • Will I be able to make an impact on my student teacher?
  • There is not enough time to teach student teachers everything they need to know. 
  • What if my students begin to struggle once my student teacher starts instructing?
  • I don't want my mentee thinking that I am not a good teacher.
  • I feel like I have to be perfect all of the time.
  • I feel uncomfortable having someone else watch me teach.
  • I don't want to give up control of my classroom to someone that I do not know.
  • I don't want to seem like I am bossing my student teacher around.
  • What if my mentee thinks that I am a mean teacher?
  • How do I critique my student teacher without seeming insulting?

Words That Might Be Encouraging:

  • You are a great teacher and you can handle this.
  • Give your student teachers positive affirmations before giving them a critique.
  • While critiquing them, be sure to give them suggestions on how they can do things better next time.
  • Be kind and welcoming to make your student teacher feel comfortable.
  • Be personable and try to get to know your mentee.
  • Tell them not to be afraid to be "mean" to your class. Discipline is an important part of teaching.
  • Be sure to give them classroom management tips and tricks.
  • Don't be afraid to give up control. Working hands on is how your mentee will learn.
  • Your students will be successful, because they will still have you teaching them part of the time. 
  • This is only temporary; you will get your classroom back soon. 
  • Your student teachers are doing the best they can. They are still learning and will make mistakes, 

Words That Might Be Discouraging:

  • Wow! You are going to trust someone with your students?
  • Do your kids like the student teacher?
  • Do you think your student teacher has what it takes to be a good instructor?
  • Is your student teacher normal?
  • Are you ready to get rid of your mentee?
  • Let the student teachers figure it out on their own.
  • The students in your class are not well behaved. There is no way your student teacher will be able to handle those kids without you.
  • You need to be more critical of your mentee's teaching. 
  • You need to leave your classroom more and let your student teacher handle things.
  • Who cares if your student teacher isn't a good instructor? That does not affect you.
See Personalized Encouragement Recommendations for Someone You Care About
Personalize: Name & Relationship (sign-in/up to complete personal profile information to improve encouragement recommendations)
Select relationship type
Was this guide helpful?
Your rating will help us improve this encouragement guide.