According to Stalker (1994), the term mentor is grounded in homer’s odyssey and laden with expectations of a tradition of guiding care and wisdom. In addition, Bell (1996) defined mentoring; which has come from the Greek word meaning “enduring”, as a sustained relationship between a youth and adult or older peer.
Furthermore, Dortch (2000) explains that mentoring occurs through friendship, teaching, guiding, coaching and helping. Moreover Megginson, et al. (1995), explained that mentoring is off line help by one person to another in making significant transition in knowledge, work or thinking.
This case study will discuss a child who is experiencing bereavement. The referral was made because the child was finding it difficult to cope with this change and were having behavioural issues which affected his learning and social interaction. This has resulted the child being lonely, frustrated and isolated; as explained by the adults who support the child in day to day routine.
The mentor will be following Zachary (2000) framework where the mentor will explore the background information of the child, before actually meeting him face to face. The mentor will meet other practitioners who work with Child A on day to day basis to get information of Child A.
Background Information of the learner:
The child will be called ‘Child A’ due to confidentiality and child protection issues.
Age: 10 years
Ethnicity: Asian Pakistani Additional Information: Child A is currently in year 5; have two siblings; one brother and a sister.; the mother of the child is working full time and is not able to give time to Child A. Child A’s father has died recently due to an heart attack. It was reported by the mother that Child A’s sleeping pattern has disturbed due to the reason of the father’s death, the child has been to the doctor and the mother was advised on spending quality time with the child and before the child goes to bed, the mother needs to read some bed time stories to relax the child A’s brain. Child A does not want to come to school as reported by the mother of the child; due to some children asking about how his father died, for this particular reason the child’s attendance at school is really low. It was observed by practitioners that child A gets frustrated and angry really quickly and does not want to play or interact with the children in class. To support child A, he was referred to a mentor to get one to one support and deal with any issues that the child may have.
According to Zachary’s model (2000), Before meeting Child A, the practitioner looked into Child A’s background information, history of any mentoring sessions and child A’s cultural and religious beliefs, to support child A effectively the practitioner will take all the factors into consideration as according to McCarthy (2006), when mentoring a child it is important to look at all the factors around a child’s life, past experiences and learning needs to ensure that the support that has been given meets the needs of the learner or the mentee.
Identified areas of learning in mentoring sessions
Child A is experiencing grief which is affecting him not only mentally and emotionally but also physically. In reference to Barbato and Irwin (1992), grief is a state which the bereaved person has lost someone. When faced with this loss the most powerful forms of attachment behaviours are activated in an attempt to reinstate the relationship. Worden (1991), describe a vast repertoire of behaviours under four general categories; emotional response, physical sensations, altered cognitions and behaviours.
As following Zachary (2000), framework, in the first meeting the practitioner discussed with the child the reason for the referral, the practitioner used the effective technique of questioning, where Child A was asked open ended questions to encourage communication for example “Are you happy to work with me to support you?” This relates to Hayes (2002)