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Peer mentoring

Identifying academic strengths

Here’s an activity to help students identify their academic strengths and weaknesses and how to establish goals to improve. This method also introduces students to the concept of peer mentoring.

Identifying strengths and weaknesses activity


Needed materials:  pencil and post-it notes or paper.

  • Distribute a post-it note to each student.
  • Ask each student to write his/her name at the top of the paper.
  • Ask students to write school subjects on the paper:  English, Math, History, Science, Social Studies, etc.
  • Ask students to draw a star beside each subject area in which they feel confident.
  • Ask students to circle each subject in which they feel unsure.
  • Ask students to pass the post-it notes to the front of the room and display post-it notes on the wall.
  • Note that everyone has a subject area in which they do not excel or feel confident.
  • Now ask students to make note of who is strong in an area where they are not. This establishes a go-to person when working in study groups.
  • Here’s an opportunity to create a buddy system or mentoring program.
  • Create a chart and list subject areas at the top. Post the chart in the front of the room.
  • Post the names of students under the subjects in which they excel. Now students know who to approach for assistance. 
  • Create study groups based on the information gathered from the goal-setting activity.
  • Create study groups pairing individuals with strong skill sets and those needing extra guidance.  Encourage students to help each other. This is peer mentoring at its best.