2023 Training Weekends

The MFL Mentoring team is still basking in the glory of the two fantastic mentor training weekends we had the pleasure of running in September. We welcomed around 200 students from across Wales to Cardiff University for our interactive and fun-filled training, and what a fantastic and truly inspiring bunch they are!

We covered different topics to equip the students with everything they need to be successful mentors. From mentor skills & qualities, safeguarding, understanding their role, and everything in between! Here’s what some of our lovely students had to say about the MFL Mentoring training weekend:

“The training was amazing, it helped me work on the areas I was struggling at and not only that it gave me confidence and an ability to see things differently, I didn’t expect this training to be that good but it was much better than I thought it would be”

“As a previous mentor, it never fails to surprise me how passionate and enthusiastic the MFL project team is. The training has definitely equipped me with the skills to become an effective mentor and helped me familiarise myself with the new Curriculum for Wales.”

We were also very excited to welcome Cardiff University’s new Vice Chancellor to the first ever Love Reading mentor training for an inspiring chat about our exciting pilot reading project aimed at encouraging reluctant primary school readers. The mentors particularly enjoyed the session exploring how to use their bodies, voices and space as tools to be the most effective and confident mentors. Please don’t take our word for it, have a look at some of the lovely feedback we’ve received about our Love Reading training:

“It was much more organised than I expected with how plentiful the resources are and the continued support throughout the days. Also how much the leaders believed in us was really refreshing to experience and quite inspiring.”

“It was so inclusive and friendly, I felt like I could really learn and ask questions in a safe and happy environment. I feel really confident that I can deliver my sessions but also ask for help as I go along. I really appreciate how welcoming it has been and how much effort went into it!”

We’re thrilled to have no fewer than 150 previous mentors joining us to mentor again this year across both projects. This is testament to the wonderful experiences that our students have in our partner schools as well as the sense of fulfilment and joy that mentoring brings them. Also, we’d like to take this opportunity to thank a number of our previous mentors for helping out during the training weekend and giving our new mentors the benefit of sharing their experiences of mentoring so far.

Our mentors truly are the beating heart of our project and it’s impossible to overstate the impact that near-peer mentors have on our young learners, the statistics speak for themselves; in 2022 41.8% of learners who participated in the mentoring sessions indicated they were ‘definitely’ or ‘probably’ going to take an IL for GCSE, compared with only 16% of learners who had answered the same question in the learner baseline survey. Now, that’s impact.

We cannot wait for this year’s cohort to get underway with their mentoring sessions and Linking Languages workshops. Here’s to the class of 2024 –  we can’t wait to join you on your mentoring journey!

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