Foundations for Mentoring Struggling Students: On Fighting the Right Fires

Table of Contents


A Map to Help You Make the Most of The Forum

Explore

The Art of Teaching: A Conference for Teaching Men


November 9-11 • The Heights School, Potomac, MD

Learn More

Continuing with the theme of mentoring, this week Mr. David Maxham discusses how we, as parents and teachers, can better mentor struggling students by taking a step back and focusing on the basics. He offers three practical guideposts for these wonderful guys to strive for as they take steps toward becoming the man they were made to be. We remain, as always, optimistic.

After establishing a relationship of trust with your mentees, Mr. Maxham recommends helping our boys structure their days around the following three key moments: 

  1. Waking up in the morning 
  2. Midday break 
  3. Going to sleep at night 

Anchoring resolutions to these three moments, Mr. Maxham explains, helps the boys to achieve their goals. As half the battle in achieving a goal lies in being mindful of it, attaching them to parts of the day that occur without fail can be a strategy for success.  

A good place to start when building the foundation could be: a morning offering after waking up, a brief moment of recollection at midday, and an examination of conscience before going to bed at night. As the boys develop more goals, having this framework in place will be a helpful support. 

Moreover, as parents, we can help our sons develop these habits by practicing them both ourselves and together as a family. A quick morning offering at breakfast or a brief moment of family prayer in the evening are excellent ideas. And asking our children to pray for us is a great way to not only help them pray, but also to help each of us, who, as we all know, need all the grace we can get. Although there are many things that a six year old boy may not be able to help his parents with, he can pray for them; and that is worth the whole world. 

Show Highlights

  • Where to begin with a mentee who is struggling 
  • The dangers of overwhelming mentees with too much 
  • How to help your mentee develop goals 
  • The importance of framing questions with the right language 
  • How you son can put a structure in place to get to the root of problems
  • Why parents and educators need to have long-term vision
  • Habits are not things that you just turn on and off
  • Keep it simple: the three key moments in the day and how to anchor resolutions to them
  • How many goals should a mentee work on at once?
  • How parents can coach their sons in the foundations 
  • Ask your children to pray for you 

Also on The Forum

Dave Maxham

About the guest:

Dave Maxham


David Maxham grew up in New Jersey and went to Rutgers College, majoring in Mathematics and minoring in Classics, also studying linguistics and psychology. Before coming to The Heights in 2013, he taught high school math in the public schools for four years, in Newark, New Jersey and Dunellen, New Jersey. He loves music and plays the piano and guitar. He lives in Maryland with his wife, Samantha, and seven children.