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  1. 1. COMMUNICATIONANDLISTENING SKILLS.THE HEART OF A FOOL IS IN HIS MOUTH, BUT THE MOUTH OF AWISE MAN IS IN HIS HEART...BEN FRANKLIN
  2. 2. COMMUNICATION AND LISTENINGSKILLSINTRODUCTIONCOMMUNICATION IS ANY MEANS BY WHICH AN INDIVIDUAL RELATESEXPERIENCES , IDEAS , KNOWLEDGE , ANDFEELINGS TO ANOTHER.COMMUNICATION CAN BE EXPRESSED THROUGHBOTH SPEECH AND GESTURES (H ARRYMAN ,KRESHECK, AND NICOLOSI , 1996). I T IS IMPORTANT THAT MENTORS KNOWHOW TO EFFECTIVELY COMMUNICATEWITH MENTEES . THIS SECTION IS DEVOTED TO INFORMATION ANDACTIVITIES DESIGNED TO DEVELOP ACTIVELISTENING AND COMMUNICATION SKILLS EFFECTIVE FOR WORKING WITH ANADOLESCENT POPULATION .WHEN ESTABLISHING A MENTORING RELATIONSHIP , IT IS IMPORTANT TOCREATE A COMFORTABLE COMMUNICATIONENVIRONMENT . THIS CAN BE DONE BY USING THE THEORY OF RECIPROCITY .FOLLOWING THIS THEORY ENABLESMENTORS TO CONTROL THE FLOW AND DIRECTION OF A CONVERSATION BYTHE RATE AT WHICH INFORMATION IS
  3. 3. REVEALED. FOR EXAMPLE , IF THE MENTOR REVEALS SOMETHING ABOUTHIM- OR HERSELF , THE MENTEE WOULDLIKELY RESPOND BY REVEALING THE SAME SORT OF INFORMATION . THISPATTERN TENDS TO REPEAT. I F AT SOME POINTTHE MENTEE DOES NOT RESPOND IN KIND , THE PATTERN OF THECONVERSATION SHOULD BE REDIRECTED TO MAKE THEMENTEE FEEL MORE COMFORTABLE . THIS TYPE OF INTERACTION PATTERNFOSTERS THE DEVELOPMENT OF TRUST IN THEMENTORING RELATIONSHIP .GUIDELINES FOR COMMUNICATIONTO ENCOURAGE THE DEVELOPMENT OF TRUST IN THE MENTORINGRELATIONSHIP :• MAKE COMMUNICATION POSITIVE , CLEAR , AND SPECIFIC .• RECOGNIZE THAT EACH INDIVIDUAL SEES THINGS FROM A DIFFERENTPOINT OF VIEW.• BE OPEN AND HONEST ABOUT YOUR FEELINGS AND ACCEPT OTHERS .FEELINGS .• ASK QUESTIONS FOR CLARIFICATION ON AN ISSUE .• LEARN TO LISTEN. ALLOW TIME FOR THE STUDENT TO TALK WITHOUTINTERRUPTIONS .
  4. 4. THESE SUGGESTIONS SHOULD BE USED AS GUIDELINES. THERE MAY BESITUATIONS THAT REQUIRE MENTORS TO ACTDIFFERENTLY .ACTIVE LISTENING SKILLSACTIVE LISTENING IS AN ESSENTIAL MENTORING SKILL . ONE OF THE MOSTCOMMON MISTAKES MENTORS CAN MAKEIS CONFUSING .HEARING . AND .LISTENING .. HEARING IS MERELY NOTINGTHAT SOMEONE IS SPEAKING . LISTENING,HOWEVER , IS MAKING SENSE OF WHAT IS HEARD AND REQUIRES THEINDIVIDUAL TO CONSTANTLY PAY ATTENTION ,INTERPRET , AND REMEMBER WHAT IS HEARD . HEARING IS PASSIVE ;LISTENING IS ACTIVE . THE PASSIVE LISTENER ISMUCH LIKE A TAPE RECORDER. I F THE SPEAKER IS PROVIDING A CLEARMESSAGE , THE LISTENER WILL PROBABLY GETMOST OF WHAT IS SAID . FOR MENTORS, THIS IS NOT ENOUGH . THEY MUSTBE ACTIVE LISTENERS . ACTIVE LISTENINGREQUIRES THE LISTENER TO HEAR THE WORDS AND IDENTIFY THE FEELINGSASSOCIATED WITH THE WORDS . MENTORSSHOULD BE ABLE TO UNDERSTAND THE SPEAKER FROM HIS OR HER POINT OFVIEW. THERE ARE FOUR ESSENTIALREQUIREMENTS FOR ACTIVE LISTENING :
  5. 5. • INTENSITY• EMPATHY• ACCEPTANCE• WILLINGNESS TO TAKE RESPONSIBILITY FOR COMPLETENESSAN ACTIVE LISTENER CONCENTRATES ON WHAT THE SPEAKER IS SAYING .THE HUMAN BRAIN IS CAPABLE OF HANDLINGA SPEAKING RATE SIX TIMES THAT OF THE AVERAGE SPEAKER . THUS, THELISTENER MUST FOCUS ON THE SPEAKER .TUNING OUT DISTRACTIONS WILL INCREASE LISTENING ABILITY (ROBBINS,1991).SUGGESTIONS FOR IMPROVING ACTIVE LISTENING SKILLS1. MAKE EYE CONTACT: LACK OF EYE CONTACT MAY BE INTERPRETED ASDISINTEREST OR DISAPPROVAL.MAKING EYE CONTACT WITH THE SPEAKER FOCUSES ATTENTION , REDUCESTHE CHANCE OF DISTRACTION , AND ISENCOURAGING TO THE SPEAKER .
  6. 6. 2. EXHIBIT AFFIRMATIVE NODS AND APPROPRIATE FACIAL EXPRESSIONS:THE EFFECTIVE LISTENERSHOWS SIGNS OF BEING INTERESTED IN WHAT IS SAID THROUGH NONVERBALSIGNS . TOGETHER WITH GOOD EYECONTACT, NON -VERBAL EXPRESSIONS CONVEY ACTIVE LISTENING .3. AVOID DISTRACTING ACTIONS OR GESTURES: DO NOT LOOK AT OTHERPEOPLE , PLAY WITH PENS ORPENCILS , SHUFFLE PAPERS , OR THE LIKE . THESE ACTIVITIES MAKE THESPEAKER FEEL LIKE THE LISTENER IS NOTINTERESTED IN WHAT IS BEING SAID .4. ASK QUESTIONS: QUESTIONING HELPS ENSURE CLARIFICATION OF WHATTHE SPEAKER IS SAYING , FACILITATESUNDERSTANDING , AND LETS THE SPEAKER KNOW THAT THE LISTENER ISENGAGED .5. PARAPHRASE : PARAPHRASING MEANS RESTATING WHAT THE INDIVIDUALHAS SAID IN DIFFERENT WORDS . THISTECHNIQUE ALLOWS THE LISTENER TO VERIFY THAT THE MESSAGE WASRECEIVED CORRECTLY .6. AVOID INTERRUPTING THE SPEAKER: ALLOW THE SPEAKER TOCOMPLETE HIS OR HER THOUGHT BEFORERESPONDING , AND DO NOT ANTICIPATE WHAT HE/SHE WILL SAY.
  7. 7. 7. D O NOT TALK TOO MUCH: TALKING IS EASIER THAN LISTENINGINTENTLY TO SOMEONE ELSE . AN ACTIVELISTENER RECOGNIZES THAT IT IS IMPOSSIBLE TO TALK AND LISTENACUTELY AT THE SAME TIME.POSITIVE FEEDBACKMENTORS SHOULD FOCUS ON PROVIDING POSITIVE FEEDBACK . NEGATIVEFEEDBACK INHIBITS THE MENTEE FROMTALKING FREELY AND USUALLY MEETS MORE RESISTANCE . POSITIVEFEEDBACK , HOWEVER , IS TYPICALLY MET WITHACCEPTANCE . SUGGESTIONS FOR PROVIDING POSITIVE FEEDBACK :• FOCUS ON SPECIFIC BEHAVIORS: AVOID VAGUE , GENERAL STATEMENTSLIKE .Y OU DID A GOOD JOB. OR.THAT WAS A REALLY BAD DECISION .. I NSTEAD , PROVIDE INFORMATIONTHAT TELLS WHY YOU FEEL WHAT YOUEXPRESSED . FOR INSTANCE, .Y OU PLAYED A GREAT GAME TODAY. I LIKEDTHE WAY YOU PLAYED DEFENSE ..• KEEP FEEDBACK GOAL ORIENTED: MAKE SURE STATEMENTS ARERELEVANT TO WHAT THE SPEAKER ISSAYING .
  8. 8. • KEEP FEEDBACK WELL TIMED: PROVIDING IMMEDIATE FEEDBACK ISMUCH MORE EFFECTIVE THANCOMMENTS GIVEN AT A LATER TIME .• ENSURE UNDERSTANDING : JUST AS IT IS IMPORTANT FOR LISTENERS TOUNDERSTAND THE SPEAKER , IT IS ALSOIMPORTANT FOR LISTENERS TO BE UNDERSTOOD BY THE SPEAKER . ASKINGTHE MENTEE TO REPHRASE WHAT HASBEEN SAID HELPS TO ENSURE CONFIRMATION (ROBBINS, 1991).EFFECTIVE COMMUNICATION REQUIRES PRACTICE . BY FOLLOWING THEADVICE IN THIS UNIT AND FINDINGOPPORTUNITIES TO PRACTICE THE SKILLS WITH OTHER MENTORS OR WITHFRIENDS AND FAMILY ( E.G., CREATINGACTIVITIES THAT USE SPECIFIC SKILLS ), MENTORS , OVER TIME , SHOULDFEEL MORE COMFORTABLE WITH EFFECTIVECOMMUNICATION STYLES .ADDITIONALLY , MENTORS CAN CONTACT THE MENTEE.S PARENTS. IT IS AGOOD IDEA FOR A MENTOR TO INCLUDE THEMENTEE IN THE LETTER WRITING SO THAT THE MENTEE KNOWS EXACTLYWHAT IS HAPPENING . HERE ARE GUIDELINES
  9. 9. FOR WRITING A LETTER TO PARENTS .• INTRODUCE YOURSELF AS A MENTOR.• TELL THE PARENTS ABOUT YOURSELF. FIELD OF STUDY , INTERESTS ,WHERE YOU ARE FROM , AND HOW YOUBECAME INVOLVED IN THE PROGRAM .• EXPRESS YOUR DESIRE TO FORM A POSITIVE RELATIONSHIP WITH THEIRCHILD AND YOUR WILLINGNESS TO WORKIN PARTNERSHIP ON ANY PARTICULAR ISSUES THEY FEEL COULD BEBENEFICIAL TO THEIR CHILD . EXPRESS YOURSINCERE INTEREST IN THE GROWTH AND WELL- BEING OF THEIR CHILD .• INCLUDE THE DAY AND TIME OF THE WEEK THAT YOU AND YOUR MENTEEWILL BE MEETING . (THIS HELPS THEMREMEMBER TO ASK HOW IT WENT , NOT TO PICK THEM UP FROM SCHOOL ONTHAT DAY, ETC .)• TELL PARENTS HOW MUCH YOU ARE LOOKING FORWARD TO GETTING TOKNOW THEIR CHILD AND EXPRESSEXCITEMENT ABOUT GROWING CLOSER TO THEM IN THE COMING YEAR !• YOU MAY INCLUDE AN ADDRESS FOR THEM TO WRITE BACK, IF YOUCHOOSE . USE A NEUTRAL ADDRESS SUCH AS A
  10. 10. P.O. BOX , SCHOOL, OR CORPORATE ADDRESS . BE AWARE THAT THIS MAYPUT YOU IN AN AWKWARD SITUATION .
  11. 11. COMMUNICATION AND LISTENING SKILLSLESSON PLANOBJECTIVES: TO HELP MENTORS UNDERSTAND COMMUNICATIONGUIDELINES AND LISTENING SKILLS WHILEBUILDING RAPPORT WITH THEIR MENTEES .LESSON: THE INSTRUCTOR WILL DISCUSS:• GUIDELINES FOR COMMUNICATION• ACTIVE LISTENING SKILLS• SUGGESTIONS FOR IMPROVING ACTIVE LISTENING• POSITIVE FEEDBACKMATERIALS:• 5 GUIDELINES OF COMMUNICATION
  12. 12. • ESSENTIAL REQUIREMENTS OF ACTIVE LISTENING• WAYS TO IMPROVE ACTIVE LISTENING SKILLS• SUGGESTIONS FOR PROVIDING POSITIVE FEEDBACKCOMMUNICATION AND LISTENINGSKILLS5 GUIDE LINES OF COMMUNICATION1. MAKE YOUR COMMUNICATION POSITIVE, CLEAR,AND SPECIFIC.2. RECOGNIZE THAT EACH INDIVIDUAL SEESTHINGS FROM A DIFFERENT
  13. 13. POINT OF VIEW.3. BE OPEN AND HONEST ABOUT YOUR FEELINGSAND ACCEPT OTHERS.FEELINGS.4. ASK QUESTIONS FOR CLARIFICATION ON ANISSUE.5. LEARN TO LISTEN ACTIVELY AND ALLOW TIMEFOR THE MENTEE TO TALK WITHOUTINTERRUPTION.COMMUNICATION AND LISTENINGSKILLSESSENTIALS OF ACTIVE LISTENING
  14. 14. 1. INTENSITY2. EMPATHY3. ACCEPTANCE4. RECOGNIZING RESPONSIBILITY FORCOMPLETENESS
  15. 15. COMMUNICATION AND LISTENINGSKILLSWAYS TO IMPROVE ACTIVE LISTENING SKILLS1. MAKE EYE CONTACT2. USE AFFIRMATIVE NODS AND APPROPRIATEFACIAL EXPRESSIONS3. AVOID DISTRACTING ACTIONS OR GESTURES4. ASK QUESTIONS5. PARAPHRASE6. AVOID INTERRUPTING THE SPEAKER7. DO NOT TALK TOO MUCH
  16. 16. COMMUNICATION AND LISTENINGSKILLSPROVIDING POSITIVE FEEDBACK1. FOCUS ON SPECIFIC BEHAVIORS2. KEEP FEEDBACK GOAL ORIENTED3. KEEP FEEDBACK WELL TIMED4. ENSURE UNDERSTANDING

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