How long does the course take? That depends on the student, but the course must be completed within 30 days. Even with schoolwork and other responsibilities, this has proven to be ample time (and often far more than enough) for successful course completion.
Does my child do this all by himself, or am I supposed to participate also? The student will need the assistance of an adult mentor—someone available to discuss the video lessons after the student has watched them (one at a time).
The parent(s) does need to be aware of the child’s progress through the course, through close communication with the mentor.
Why does the student need a mentor, and how do I find one? The mentor is a mature adult possibly having a background as an educator or student teacher, spiritual or educational counselor, social worker or intern, substitute teacher or coach. Sometimes a respected aunt, uncle, or family friend can comfortably fill the role. Most importantly in this case, the mentor is someone the parent is comfortable with and whose judgment, maturity and sensitivity justifies parent confidence. Mentors are sometimes recruited from among the child’s own school faculty with the help of school administration, though they may instead be a trusted adult friend or family member (not living in the home). The mentor’s job is to provide caring support and objective guidance throughout the duration of the course. Mentors normally and preferably assist remotely, e.g. by Skype or FaceTime, after the student has watched a video lesson in his own home and has then contacted the mentor to arrange for a conversation about it.
Can I mentor my own child? While occasionally successful, this is usually a disaster. For the health of family relationships and out of concern for his progress in the course, we strongly discourage parents from serving in the role of the child’s mentor.
My boy’s school suggested this course. What will he receive that says he completed it successfully? Upon request from the student’s mentor, we will forward a certified Notice of Completion that may be presented to school personnel for confirmation.
What if the student is not fully proficient in English, or has some learning challenges? Students with language limitations or learning variations can be successful in the course, though it might be necessary to commission both a mentor and a tutor for the 30-day period. While the mentor usually works remotely (Skype, email, and/or telephone communications) and engages with the student after each video lesson has been watched, a tutor might assist the student by watching the video alongside the student (under parental supervision), helping to interpret the information and make the important points accessible to him before and/or during the ensuing mentor conversation.
What is the cost of the course? Presently, $39. The one-time single-use fee is slightly variable over time, according to our efforts to keep the cost minimal while continuing to update the site and course content. The course fee (shown during the application process, before enrollment is confirmed or payment submitted) allows for temporary access to the videos, supporting materials required for parents and mentors (and—in some cases—school personnel), a Notice of Completion, and timely online response to questions or for assistance as needed.
The videos aren’t very entertaining; wouldn’t it be better if they were livelier so that the kids would look forward to watching? The videos are meant to be neither dull nor entertaining… they are meant to get the point across and to initiate the next level of conversation between the child and his mentor. Best For The Boy is nurturing and constructive, but it is also often intended to be a consequence; we believe that there’s a contradiction in the notion of assigning consequences that amuse.