The beginning of the school year is a great time to help your IOAPA students implement good strategies for a successful school year! Check out the following suggestions we’ve provided for developing a support network below:
- Check in frequently. Even if students don’t need anything immediately, knowing that the resource is there and available can be reassuring. The University of Minnesota’s mentor guidelines note that by checking in frequently, the mentor builds trust with their mentee and can identify areas of concern more quickly because the relationship is established.
- Connect students with AP resources. As mentors, you are not expected to provide all the answers to students, but knowing where they can go for additional support or helping them communicate with their instructor can be hugely beneficial. More suggestions for how to help students when they are struggling can be found here.
- Familiarize yourself with College Board offerings. The College Board administers the AP program and has a wealth of resources to help students succeed in classes, learn how college credit might be applied, and prepare for exams in the spring. Visit their website.
- Check in with other mentors about their strategies for student support. The mentor support network (more information can be found in the IOAPA Mentor Handbook) is a great way for new and veteran mentors to connect and provide suggestions to each other. If you are involved, other mentors who have experienced Iowa Online AP Academy courses can be great resources for how to talk to students and provide them with support!
- Encourage a practice of breaks and relaxation. Everyone sometimes needs a reminder to take breaks and prioritize what’s important, and students are no different. There are lots of different ways that mentors can creatively promote stress management and healthy habits. For students, this list can be a good place to start.
You can find additional resources and suggestions for mentors here.