With the back-to-school frenzy on the near horizon, there may be some extra things you need to be thinking about in regards to your child's education. For kids moving up to the more difficult grades, it may be necessary to consider a tutor to help your child keep up with the increased workload.
Check with the local high school or ask friends with older children about potential tutors for your child. If no one is available, you may want to consider the ads posted in the newspaper but do so with caution. There are also professional tutoring facilities available to check into which may be more costly than hiring an acquaintance on your own.
In order to effectively utilize a tutor in your child's life, here are 6 considerations:
1. Start an Early Search
As soon as there is an indication your child is having difficulties in a subject, start looking for a tutor. If you wait until the last few months of the school year when graduating to the next grade is at stake, it will put too much undue pressure on you, the hired tutor, and especially your child. You also want to make sure you have some options by interviewing tutors early.
2. Find a Compatible Tutor
In order for your child to get the most out of their tutoring sessions find someone your child is comfortable with and who is compatible with your child. Be sure to meet potential tutors with your child and see how they relate and how the tutor interacts with your child. Trust your gut instincts on the right choice.
3. Ask for References
Before making your final decision on a tutor, ask for references. Ideally you want to find someone who has some experience but who hasn't been tutoring the same kids for years, as that may indicate they are not doing well as a tutor. For tutors with no experience, give them a chance if your child gets along well with them. Keep communicating with the child's teacher to see if the work is going well.
4. Allow Time to Blow Off Energy
When you schedule the tutoring sessions, be sure to give your child enough time to blow off steam that has built up during a full day off school. Tutoring will be pointless if your child is too riled up or too tired to focus on homework and studying after a busy day of school and extra-curricular activities.
6. Don't Helicopter a Tutoring Session
While you may want to observe the first tutoring session, it is in everyone's best interest to allow the tutor to do their thing without your supervision or interruption. Your child may learn more effectively without your interfering. Give up control to the tutor or consider your options for providing the tutoring on your own.
7. Accept Feedback
If the tutor voices concern about your child's learning ability, listen respectfully. Bring these concerns to your child's teacher to see if they concur. If tutoring isn't helping due to suspected issues with learning, an evaluation may be necessary. Also ask your child for their thoughts. It may be true that the tutor is not compatible with your child after all as far as school work sessions are going.