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Teacher Mentor Tools

Mentoring Program Building Blocks


Oregon Mentoring Program Standards describe the structures and functions, processes, and effective practices necessary for a quality program. Effective mentoring is foundational to a quality program. An essential element of a mentoring program is a professional mentor who understands and utilizes the skills, strategies and tools necessary for the continuous development of teachers and administrators. The link takes you to the Oregon Administrative Rules page, see OARs 581-018-0130 through 581-018-0151.


These tools provide best practices, resources and tips to help you with your goals for mentoring and to establish collaborative relationships with your mentees.

The tools listed below are in PDF, Word and form fillable. These tools have been used in the online Mentor Forums.

  • Tool 1 Getting to Know You Guide - Word format

    This tool and guide provides an outline for the mentor/beginning teacher first meeting. The conversation guide provides prompts to guide the conversation and support the mentor in establishing trust and rapport.

  • Tool 2 Mentor Roles & Stances - The 3C's

    Based on the work of Lipton and Wellman, these two guides provide an overview of the Consulting, Collaborating, and Coaching stances and roles mentors assume when working with beginning teachers. Characteristics of each stance are provided, as well as illustrative examples of what each stance can look like in action.

  • Tool 3 Learning Focused Conversations Guide

    This guide outlines three types of conversations mentors may have with beginning teachers: Planning, Reflecting, or Problem Solving. The handout provides examples of a step-by-step mediational conversation.

  • Tool 4 Mentor Language Chart

    This two-page chart, based on the New Teacher Center, WestEd, and Costa and Garmston, provides example conversation stems mentor can use during Learning Focused Conversations with beginning teachers. Examples are provided for paraphrasing, clarifying, mediating, suggesting, teachable moments, and non-judgmental responses.

  • Tool 5 Data Observation Strategies

    This handout provides an overview and examples of classroom data gathering strategies mentors may use when observing beginning teachers. Included is a chart to help the mentor determine when to use a particular strategy. Strategies include Verbal Flow, Class Traffic, Selective Verbatim, Scripting, and recording. The guide is used with permission from Mentoring New Teachers through Collaborative Coaching: Facilitation and Training Guide- WestEd.

  • Tool 5a Observation Tool - Selective Verbatim
  • Tool 5b Observation Tool - Verbal Flow
  • Tool 5c Observation Tool - Class Traffic
  • Tool 6 Collaborative Discussion Guide (CDG) - Word format

    The Collaborative Discussion Guide is a tool used to guide reflective, learning focused conversations. These conversations are based on models of Cognitive Coaching from Costa and Garmston, Collaborative Coaching from West Ed, Appreciative Inquiry as adapted by TeachOntario Canada in Mentoring for All, as well as the Collaborative Assessment Log from New Teacher Center. A form is provided for mentors to use to record Successes, Focus Areas, Mentees’ Next Steps, and Mentor Support Needed during conversations with beginning teachers.

  • Tool 7a Pre-Observation Example Questions

    These example questions are provided to support mentors during a pre-observation conversation. Mentors can select relevant questions. It is not intended that all questions must be asked.

  • Tool 7b Pre-Observation Conference Guide - Word format

    This fillable form puts the example questions from Tool 7a into a document that can be used by the mentor to record the conversation.

  • Tool 8a Post-Observation Reflections Questions

    These example questions are provided to support mentors during a post-observation conversation. Mentors can select relevant questions. It is not intended that all questions must be asked

  • Tool 8b Post-Observation Reflections Guide - Word format

    This fillable form puts the example questions from Tool 8a into a document that can be used by the mentor to record the conversation.

  • Tool 9 Mentor-Administrator Conversation Guide - Word format

    The Mentor-Admin Conversation Guide is a tool used to guide reflective, informative, non-evaluative conversations between mentors and administrators of beginning teachers that also respect and maintain the confidential nature of the Mentor-BT relationship. Through regular communication, the mentor and site administrator become partners in supporting the success and development of the beginning teacher and his/her students. A fillable form is provided for the mentor to record the conversation.

  • Tool 10a Knowing Your Students as Learners Guide - Word format

    Used to guide reflective, learning focused conversations between Mentors and Beginning Teachers that support Beginning Teachers in deeply knowing their students in order to differentiate instruction to meet the needs of all learners. While holding these important conversations, the Mentor will be using his/her flexible coaching stances (3 C’s: Consult, Collaborate, and Coach.) To help Mentors help their Beginning Teachers meet the challenge of coming to know their students, the KYSL Tool helps to capture five important dimensions of learning identity: biological traits, cultural and societal factors, emotional and social influences, academic performance, and learning preferences. (Powell & Powell, How to Teach Now, 2011) You won't acquire all of this information at one time, but as you continue to collect and compile student data, a meaningful and useful learning profile of individual students, class subgroups, or whole classes should emerge

  • Tool 10b Knowing Your Students as Learners Analysis Instrument

    This tool was developed and adapted with permission from Chapter 1. Knowing Our Students as Learners, How to Teach Now by William Powell and Ochan Kusuma-Powell, 2011 ASCD to help guide mentor-beginning teacher conversations around helping teachers know their students well. This is the form to be used with Tool 10A Guide.

  • Tool 10c Knowing Your Students as Learners Sample Analysis Instrument

    This tool provides a sample of a completed form from Tool 10a/b. It provides an example of what this tool might look like after a mentor and beginning teacher meet to discuss knowing students in a whole class.

  • Tool 10d Oregon Deep Data at a Glance Chart

    This form is simply a table that organizes data from Tool 10a/b by individual student for a quick and easy reference.

  • Tool 10e Knowing Students Resources for Mentor and Beginning Teachers

    This document provides links to several questionnaires, surveys, and articles mentors may wish to provide beginning teachers in support of knowing their students. For example, several links provide student surveys teachers may use to glean information about their students’ interest, learning preferences, etc.

  • Tool 11 Knowing Our Students as Learners Structured Reflection - Word format

    This conversation guide and fillable form supports mentors in holding structured conversations about individual students with beginning teachers. Example question prompts are provided along with a form that can be used to record the conversation. This tool was adapted with permission from Chapter 1. Knowing Our Students as Learners, How to Teach Now by William Powell and Ochan Kusuma-Powell, 2011 ASCD.

  • Tool 12a Student Work Analysis Protocol

    Engaging in a collaborative process of looking at student work allows the Mentor and Beginning Teacher to analyze the learning experiences the teacher has designed for their students and determine their effectiveness. The Student Work Analysis Protocol provides a process that Mentors and Beginning Teachers can use to discuss and analyze student work. It is intended to be applicable across subjects and grades, including literacy, mathematics, science, the arts, and others. Analyzing student work gives educators information about students’ understanding of concepts and skills and can help them make instructional decisions for improving student learning. The success of this process is dependent on a culture in which all educators are collaborative and focused on reflective practice to improve student learning. A fillable form is embedded in the protocol to record and document the analysis.

  • Tool 12b Student Work Analysis Tool

    This tool is an abbreviated, fillable version of the form embedded in Tool 12a. After Beginning Teachers become comfortable and experienced with the SWA process with their Mentor, this version may be a more “user friendly” tool for regular Student Work Analysis.

  • Tool 13 Differentiated Instruction Lesson Planning Guide

    Even if Beginning Teachers have had practice writing and implementing lesson plans in their student teaching, it’s hard to be prepared for being the one responsible for doing all the plans every day. The Differentiated Instruction Unit and Lesson Planning Tools are used to guide reflective, learning focused conversations between Mentors and Beginning Teachers that support Beginning Teachers through the process of beginning with the end in mind to design differentiated instruction, assessment and evaluation based on selected content standards and a knowledge of their students. This guide offer a step-by-step process for mentors working on lesson planning with beginning teachers.

  • Tool 13a Differentiated Instruction Lesson Planner

    Tool/Template A fillable, sample lesson planning template is provided in this tool that is meant to accompany Tool 13, Lesson Planning Guide.

  • Tool 13b Unit Planner

    Similar to Tool 13a: Differentiated Lesson Plan template, this fillable template is provided to help mentors support beginning teachers in planning whole units of instruction.

  • Tool 13c Standards-based Lesson Design Template

    This tool provides another, simpler lesson plan template mentors may wish to use with beginning teachers.

  • Tool 14 Mentor-to-Mentor CDG

    This template is used to record a Mentor-to-Mentor Coaching or Reflective Conversation. The Peer Mentor should record the main points of the conversation while the “Coachee” Mentor shares and reflects. The “Coachee” keeps the completed form, and then reverses role and acts as Peer Mentor for partner, recording a new form to share. This process and form are valuable for ongoing Mentor Professional Learning, either in person at district or consortium Mentor Forums, on during online Mentor Professional Learning sessions.

  • Tool 15a Understanding by Design Template 1

    This lesson plan template provides step-by-step question prompts for designing instruction with a “backward design” process. Desired outcomes are determined first, then assessment tasks and evidence, and learning activities last.

  • Tool 15b Understanding by Design Template 2

    This UBD lesson plan template is a simplified form without question prompts.

  • Tool 16a Universal Design for Learning Guidelines Graphic Organizer

    This planning form is provided by CAST to guide educators through using the Universal Design for Learning process in designing instruction that meets the needs of all learners.

  • Tool 16b Universal Design for Learning Guidelines Sample

    This template provides detailed descriptions for each box of the UDL Graphic Organizer.

  • Tool 17a End of Year Goal Setting and Collaborative Discussion Guide

    This form may be used to guide and record a Teacher-Mentor Reflective Conversation that helps Beginning Teachers reflect on their year and set goals for next year.

  • Tool 17b End of Year Reflection CDG Tool Use Guide

    This guide is used to provide guidance for the end of the year reflective and goal setting conversation mentors have with beginning teachers. Question prompts are provided, but not meant to be all inclusive nor are all required. Mentors should determine areas if beginning teacher need and ask questions tailored to those needs.

  • Tool 18 End of Year Self Reflection

    This simple rating scale may be useful for mentors to complete to help them reflect on their own successes and challenges for the year, as well as to help formulate goals for the next year. It can be helpful to have mentors complete this form prior to a final Mentor Forum or online Mentor Professional Learning session.

For questions, comments, or additional information contact Sheli Dumas.