The Youth Mentoring Network

For Mentors

The mentoring role

Four Stages of Mentoring

The four following stages develop during the relationship, but not always in a linear way.

Stage 1

  • Initiation
    The checking out stage, building bonds of trust and entering the young person's context through demonstrating care and respect
  • Mentor Skills
    Genuineness, listening, acknowledging, warm, open and non-controlling communication.

Stage 2

  • Cultivation
    Developing a clear and distinct role, separate from other significant adults.
  • Mentor Skills
    Assisting with critical analysis of situations.
    Consideration of options, consequences and possible solutions.
    Empathy for student experiences, but also their feelings and emotions.
    Keeping the student at the centre of decision-making and growth.

Stage 3

  • Transformation
    When the student starts taking responsibility for actions and is able to reflect with the mentor about the effectiveness of decisions.
  • Mentor Skills
    Feedback and goal-setting.
    Encouraging the self belief that motivates planning for the future

Stage 4

  • Separation
    The art of helping the student "let go" by acting independently on their learning without a sense of rejection.
  • Mentor Skills
    Making learning explicit, by noting specific progress.
    Expressing pride in what the student has achieved.

Source: Pascarelli J (1998): in Goodlad S (a) Mentoring and Tutoring, Kogan Page Ltd, London, pp 231-243


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