Well-rounded education is not just about getting marks in exams and winning competitions, but about growing as a person, developing skills like critical thinking, interpersonal skills, and managerial skills. Our school has always been a trendsetter in holistic education, nurturing students in a supportive environment. Peer mentoring is one such strategy which has proved to be a win-win situation for both the mentors and the ones being mentored.
The Peer Mentor Program is based on a ‘learn as you grow’ model where students develop empathy, equity, and expertise with and from each other. Students of classes XI and XII are trained by our counsellors to conduct sessions such as healthy communication, conflict resolution, and time management for their peers in classes VI-VIII while the counsellors and external coordinators conduct it for classes IX-XII. Each module is adapted to different classes based on their age and stage of learning.
Our experience so far, along with studies conducted across the world, have shown that young students respond in a positive manner through such interactions. This not only helps them strengthen their Emotional Quotient but also fosters a safe-space for the entire community.
Ms. Mehr Lungani
Ms. Ridhi Murari
President – Sejal Singh, XII C
Vice President – Tia Banerjee, X B
Cyber safety session organized for the students of class IX on 08 April 2021
Some students of class IX attended a cyber safety session conducted by ‘Our Voix’ on 08 April 2021. Our Voix is creating a comic book on cyber safety and conducted a child-friendly focus group discussion with students to understand the problems that children face on social media and digital platforms. Based on this, they would then address the issues through a comic book. This was their second interaction with our students under the supervision of Ms. Vedica Saxena.
The students had a very engaging and insightful session where they discussed the comic book and shared their feedback which was taken positively by the team.
Sessions on Healthy communication in the month of November 2020
The theme for November’s Peer Mentoring Session was ‘Healthy Communication’. After being trained on how to run workshops, Peer Mentors from grades 11 and 12 conducted sessions for 6 – 8 graders focusing on three basic skills needed for effective communication: speaking, listening, and non-verbal gestures. They also taught the students how to manage the emotions and negative thoughts that arise during situations of conflict.
The first session introduced the students to the basics of communication. What is ‘good’ and ‘bad’ communication? What practices can help us improve one’s communication style? How can we identify characteristics of healthy and unhealthy communication in others? The interactive presentation involved watching videos as well as solving puzzles using Mentimeter. We carefully handpicked references from TV shows and curated funny memes to make concepts relatable and easier to grasp for this age group. Relevant examples helped students think of situations they themselves face and gave them ideas on how to navigate them.
The next session was aimed at conflict management and resolution skills. Incorporating lessons from the previous session, students discussed the various approaches and thought processes that are helpful in resolving conflicts with friends and family. Using a worksheet designed for self-reflection and introspection, the Mentors guided the students on how to identify, understand, and navigate differences and conflicts. A key learning outcome according to the students was the importance of acknowledging and respecting the other person’s thoughts and feelings in a conflict. Developing healthy communication skills at an early stage will help young leaders going forward.
Session on ‘The Power of Thoughts: How to Have a Brighter Outlook’ in September 2020
After a very constructive and positive feedback from the previous ‘Time Management’ sessions, the Peer Mentoring Club conducted yet another interactive and productive session on ‘The Power of Thoughts: How to Have a Brighter Outlook’ on September 2, 2020, and September 16, 2020, with the students of classes. The basic idea was to make the students aware of how natural it is to have negative thoughts and how they can find ways to tackle the thoughts and problems positively.
The sessions made the students comprehend the fact that thoughts are just perceptions. They also discussed why it is hard to stop negative thoughts and why paying attention to one’s self-talk is important. In order to help the students identify negative thoughts and to find a positive in every situation, a lot of activities including different scenario discussions, mentimeter poll, creative games, etc were conducted. The very interactive and enthusiastic response from all the students was like fuel for the mentors and made the session tremendously effective and helped the students in opening up to their seniors, which is the basic aim of the peer mentoring sessions.
'Time Management ' Sessions
This year, the Peer Mentoring Club, started by looking at the (almost) universal problem of ‘Time Management. In the course of two sessions on July 22 and August 12, there was intense discussion on how to manage time better, thus removing a major cause of stress. The sessions covered topics like productivity, procrastination, and strategies for better time management. Various well-planned activities helped students to understand how to do this. The response was enthusiastic, with lots of ideas and suggestions pouring in. For students of class VI, a quiz was created with situation-based questions, while students of classes VII and VIII created their own to-do lists for the day and the week.
The positive feedback from all the attendees (analyzed via a survey) reinforced enthusiasm among the mentors and teachers to plan equally relevant content for future sessions. Mentoring is clearly a great way to put younger minds on the path to personal growth while helping the mentors to hone their interpersonal and communication skills.