"This would be best done right at the start of the season, to make sure
the rookie gets hooked up to the relevant web sites, listserv and other
resources, and gets some tips on how to organize the work, set realistic
goals, create appropriate ground-rules, understand the role of the coach
in FLL, and pace out the short season."
Count me in! I think even veteran coaches could benefit from what you
are suggesting. I personally think that the best time to start is a
week or two before the challenge is announced. It would also be good
if some schools ( with rookie or veterans teams) could host small
David Levy (third year Div1 coach)
Michael Blanpied wrote:
> Thoughts on the mentoring of rookie coaches...
> Being a rookie coach is hard work. There is a lot to learn about FLL,
> a lot of kid-management and kid-guidance to be done, the challenge of
> a short season. Success at a regional tournament involves a lot of
> planning and insight that may be elusive even for those who read the
> coaching manual and read the listserv, and it may not be apparent to
> some rookie coaches that there are books, guides, conference calls and
> whatnot available to them.
> This season (my third) I had the opportunity to provide some help and
> mentoring to a school librarian coaching a young rookie team at a
> school in a nearby county. Although we never met in person, we
> corresponded a number of times and talked on the phone a time or two,
> which gave her the opportunity to ask for guidance (from "where is the
> regional tournament?" to "what's really expected in the research
> project?" to "how can I know what the judges will ask?" to any number
> of questions about the intricate robot-match rules), and for me to
> offer advice that she may not have even known she needs. Although
> there were still a lot of aspects of the tournament that she found
> eye-opening, I think it was helpful.
> I wonder if VADCFLL ought to consider formalizing such an arrangement
> for all new coaches. The idea would be to pair up each new coach with
> one (or maybe two) experienced coaches. This would be best done right
> at the start of the season, to make sure the rookie gets hooked up to
> the relevant web sites, listserv and other resources, and gets some
> tips on how to organize the work, set realistic goals, create
> appropriate ground-rules, understand the role of the coach in FLL, and
> pace out the short season. Ideally the experienced coach (or maybe his
> or her whole team, if experienced) would meet with the rookie group
> early in the season, but that would be above-and-beyond. As tournament
> date approaches, the mentor coach could provide guidance on creating a
> suitable presentation, interpreting the Q&A's, and how to get the
> kids, families and materials organized.
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