I love mentoring Kripalu teachers. I have been helping teachers achieve their 500-hour professional level certifications since my own certification by Kripalu in 2003. The primary goal of mentoring is to support you as a teacher in becoming your own ongoing mentor by empowering you to self-observe in the manner so wisely suggested by Swami Kripalu: "Self-observation without judgement is the highest spiritual practice."
The prescribed structure of the formal mentoring program includes:
1). An initial session of 1-2 hours in length in which you are asked to explore your experience of yourself as a teacher, articulating both your special strengths and areas which you identify as "edges." You or we may end up articulating particular goals or areas of focus as a result of this session that will evolve and transform as we move through the months to follow together.
2). Three mentoring sessions in which the mentor will be a participant-observer in one of your classes and will meet with you for a minimum of 90 minutes after class to allow you to explore your experience of the class and to permit the mentor to share her experience and suggestions. These sessions must be a minimum of 3 months and a maximum of 6 months apart in order to provide time to actualize any intentions that emerge from the mentoring process.
3). Six written self-reports you will complete after teaching a class. Three of these will be written and submitted to your mentor between your first and second mentoring sessions, and three between your second and third mentoring sessions. There is a form for these reports but you should also feel free to develop your own format if it better serves your learning process.
Within this structure, some of which will remind you of YTT practice teaching, there is ample opportunity and support for you to figure out what inspires you and keeps your teaching a fresh, exciting, developing practice for you and your students. "Without judgement" does not imply "without discernment." Compassionate self-observation includes developing awareness and clarity about our own needs and motivations as well as our strengths and edges and about how all these interact with the needs, issues, limitations and preferences of our students and the contexts in which we teach.
As a mentor, I am also not at all shy about making suggestions, though I always want to be clear that I do so only with the understanding that my ideas may or may not be useful or relevant for you. There are many wonderful ways to context a yoga class and to teach each posture within a class and my primary intention is to help you continue to evolve your own unique style.
Several teachers I have worked with have indicated that they would be happy to talk with other teachers in the process of choosing a mentor:
Andrea - email@example.com
Patricia - firstname.lastname@example.org
Amelia - email@example.com
Fees: My fee for mentoring is $50 per hour. Thus the total charge for the 6 to 18 month period of mentoring tends to be between $500 and $750. No fee is paid to Kripalu for mentoring. Upon your graduation, I will present you with a certificate and contact Kripalu to let them know you have completed the requirement, and the mentoring credits will be added to your record. (Additional/optional coaching or mentoring sessions which go beyond the prescribed structure may be arranged at $50 per hour if desired.)