Buddy Session Plan

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Personal development Buddy sessions are there to help the students work together to reflect on their learning. What is going well, what isn't going so well and keep track of their progress.


Below you will find an example session plan that you can use to structure the time with your students.

You are encouraged to add, remove and change this plan as you see fit - this plan should give you a basis to work from.

Buddy Group Session (45 mins-1 hour)

Welcome & Icebreaker (10 minutes)

Open the session with some chat about their lives and what they've been doing recently. One of the most critical parts of coaching or mentoring is the relationships that is built over the course and the trust that is developed from that.

Icebreakers are a great way to start a group session so you all can get to know each other and gel together.

Don't be afraid to talk about yourself - they are always interested in what you do as well!

Goal Catch-Up (5 minutes)

Have each of your student Buddies update on where they are with thier goals. For the first few sessions you can be focusing on how they are coping with the PD assignments and feeling integrated into the larger class. Make sure you hold your students accountable for not completing the goals they set for themselves - it's important that you show that they are important. Encourage the other students to offer support to each other. You are there to guide the students but they learn better helping

Recap & Orientation (10 minutes)

It's important to orient yourself to what the student has been working recently so that you can help them. This can be both their PD and technical coursework. You want to get a sense of how their behaviour contributes to their learning. You'll want to have them answer the following questions:

  1. What did you learn in the last class?

  2. What was the homework for the last class?

  3. What was challenging for you in the last class?

Group mentoring/coaching (15+ minutes)

One of the most important aspects of personal development is self reflection. Students can get caught up in their learning and forget to take time to see what they have learned and how they got to where they are. When trouble arises they have difficulty seeing how the situation developed. When good things happen, they forget all about them! They will need to recall these experiences when they go to interviews and have to answer those, 'Tell me about a time when...' questions.

In this part of the session you will have your group share their entry from their Brag Diaries. The Brag Diary is a document where students refect on their learning by bragging’ about themselves and celebrating their achievements. They will share their weekly entires and give each other feedback.

Goal Setting (10+ minutes)

In order to help your students get the most from the course, you should help them set achievable goals to work on. Goals are important to a students development as they keep pushing them towards growth in a personalised way. We suggest you use the GROWS menthod to help your students work through the goal setting process.

Wherever possible - remember to keep the goals SMART. The goals they set should most importantly be achievable by the students in the time that they have available.

Wrap Up (5 minutes)

For anything that you didn't get to in the session direct them towards resources to help them. For example

  • Tell them -don't ask them - to share their problems in the class Slack channel

  • Direct them towards online materials to help them

  • Encourage them to go to a study group or to partake in peer learning

  • And finally - schedule follow up calls to catch up with them about their personal circumstances.

Spend your final few moments encouraging them and how well they've done on the session - try to find specific moments that they made progress over the past week.

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