Acting as a teacher, coach or mentor helps to reinforce the concepts on all the different subject matters you cover whilst mentoring, therefore turning a student into a teacher is an opportunity you should make the most of. Vocalising your opinions and thoughts on a particular subject works to further deepen your understanding of the topic matter. It also has another benefit of exposing any gaps you may have when your student asks you questions.
Photo taken from Golbog’s photostream on Flickr under the Creative Commons license
How Did We Execute It?
We’re lucky enough on our project to pair program and we’ve found it an extremely effective technique at spreading knowledge about the system. When are team formed, we co-ordinated some strategic pairing, understanding that we had people at various stages of learning about the system. We made sure that people who’ve been working on the system pairs with people newer the system, effectively positioning them in the role of a “mentor” for newer people.
Why Is It Important?
Continuous cycling between student and teacher are common patterns you see in all types of martial arts classes because they recognise the importance of putting a student in the position of a teacher. Often you see many of the senior students instructing newer students on how to improve their technique even though they themselves haven’t yet achieved mastery.
Teaching others is an important part of the learning cycle, strengthening and deepening the things that you think you know so it’s important to create these opportunities and take advantage of them where you can.