Why did you decide to continue mentoring during COVID-19?
I believe that it is especially important to keep helping children during COVID-19. As their everyday life and school routine has changed so much, it is crucial that they feel supported when facing these new circumstances. I wanted to help Dominique adapt to the academic and social changes in her life and keep the mentoring sessions as “normal” as possible.
How have you adapted mentoring while you can’t meet in person?
We now have all our mentoring sessions online. This does create some challenges, mostly concerning technology, as the connection will not always be perfect so that understanding each other can be difficult. Mentoring via online calls also means that we cannot do some of the activities that we usually do, such as drawing together. However, we have found creative ways of continuing with our sessions. We started playing new games and screen-sharing allows us to work on academic exercises together.
Is there anything you have particularly enjoyed?
Before we had to stop meeting in person, every other week we would have a “fun session”. Dominique and I both really enjoyed them; our favourite was when we made milkshakes together. These sessions really help us to get to know one another and simply have a good time.
Is there anything you have learnt from working with Dominique?
My time working with Dominique has taught me a lot. Mostly, I have improved my planning skills when having to structure our lessons and preparing exercises, games and worksheets in advance. Mentoring, especially during COVID-19, has also made me be more creative and flexible because we have had to adapt our sessions in order to continue with them online.