If students are struggling in school or simply need additional help and support in the run up to exams, parents typically turn to home tutoring. But with so many home tutors out there, there’s naturally a lot of variation in the quality of tuition. So, to help you separate the good from the bad, here is a guide of what good quality home tuition involves.
Before tuition begins, a good tutor should ensure the following:
An assessment of the student's knowledge & skills
Before any form of tutoring begins, a good tutor should establish what a student knows, what they can do and what they need to work on. This could take the form of looking over recent assessments, written work, giving children a checklist of skills to mark their confidence levels, school books or perhaps undertaking a short initial assessment (although this should be handled with care - as it runs the risk of making a child feel like a failure even before the tuition has started).
Understanding Exam requirements & target grades
A good tutor will provide bespoke classes. To do this, they need to know the exam board (if a child is preparing for exams in the next year or two), set texts and units. This is because each exam board covers different material and questions can be worded very differently.
Similarly, the tutor should find out about your child's recent reports - what are their current and target grades, are they exceeding expectations or below expected standard. If a tutor doesn't ask these questions and plan accordingly, be wary. A good tutor will see what your child needs to study and plan to get the best possible, yet realistic, grades.
Find out about the student & any learning difficulties
Some children have low self esteem, some are shy at first, others are keen to move quickly and master the hardest subjects. There are also a range of learning difficulties that need different teaching strategies. A good tutor will talk to parents/guardians about these to ensure the correct approach from day one.
So, when choosing the best home tutor for your child, make sure the tutor considers the 3 points above before beginning. You can also use this blog to identify the qualities of a good tutor to help you choose.
Good Quality Home Tutoring Typically Involves:
Students learning something every session
Building self-esteem & confidence
Teaching students all the tricks
1. Students learning something every session
Students should learn something from the very first session and in all subsequent sessions. As a parent, check with your children what they have covered and what they know or are able to do that previously was challenging.
2. Building self-esteem & confidence
A good tutor should be a positive influence on your child, praising them for their successes and making them feel proud of their achievements. They will also respond clearly to all questions and ensure your child feels confident asking as many questions as they need to progress successfully.
Confidence is essential for students and can be key for their success, however many children feel rather lost in large classrooms. But with the right support from a tutor, these situations can be prevented.
3. Teaching students all the tricks
There are lots of tricks that tutors can teach students to help them do well at school. These range from mental maths strategies, rhymes or mnemonics to remember information, how to make revision cards, key terminology to use and grade criteria. Knowing these tips and tricks can be crucial for improving grades and performing well.
In a classroom setting, it’s unlikely teachers will have the time to teach students every trick in the book. Even if teachers did teach students certain tricks, some may not find them helpful. Tutors, however, can find out how each individual student learns best, and tailor their lessons, teaching techniques and tricks to suit each student.
4. Increasing Challenge
Tutors should ensure that children master the things they were struggling with first and gradually increase the difficulty of work to ensure constant improvement and, ideally, help a child know more than expected of their age group.
5. Exam practice
Many parents choose to employ a tutor to help their children get the best exam grades. In this case, it is crucial that the tutor not only teach individual topics, texts or exam questions but also helps the child with exam practice that mixes up all the required skills.
How We Can Help
At GCSE Masterclass, we use only the very best teachers. All our staff are fully qualified, experienced teachers who have a proven track record of high quality teaching and excellent results within their GCSE classes.
Contact us to find out more about how we can quickly improve your child’s confidence, grades and future.
Written by Kate, for GCSE Masterclass.