The role of a tutor is to be supportive and help students get beyond the frustrations of school. A tutor is a student’s remedy offering them their one stop solution to finding their passion for learning. Here’s how you can become a more effective tutor and further your students’ interest in education:
As a tutor, it is your job to shape the learning environment. Get to know your students before hand and understand what they hope to accomplish through your tutoring sessions. Consider sending them a questionnaire focused on recognizing their preferred styles of learning early on. Assess their needs, strengths and weaknesses in order to develop the most effective action plan and know where to begin instruction. Be sure to include your students in the development of your action plan and help them feel empowered!
Your ultimate goal as a tutor should be to inspire your students to become independent learners. Turn your focus towards accomplishing the greater purpose of teaching your students how to learn rather than just teaching them the answers. Encourage your students to enhance their critical thinking abilities by exploring subjects in a more analytical manner.
Be honest with yourself, and with your students. If it’s been a while since you have last studied the material at hand, make sure you review important topics the night before you head over for a tutoring session. Be honest with your students as well – if you are asked a question you don’t know the answer to, don’t make it up. Collaborate with your students to find the answer, or let them know you’ll do the research and get back to them.
Note: Be sure to remember to get back to them!
Learn to Adapt.
Effective tutoring requires you to be flexible and understand that no two students are the same. More so, be ready to adapt to different study styles and identify individual approaches to meet the needs of specific students. There are three main types of learning styles: auditory, visual and kinesthetic. While most people learn best through a combination of the three, every individual is different and requires a specific formula. Make sure you are being a good listener and picking up on clues to better understand your students wants, needs and expectations!
Many students searching for effective tutoring are struggling in school and are in desperate need of some optimism. Be creative- show your students how fun learning can be. Spark their interest by making topics relatable and adding your personal touch of humor. You can even try incorporating games into your study techniques. Most importantly, to keep maximum levels of boredom away, try switching environments. Move your tutoring sessions to a new location every once in a while, maybe even venture outdoors. Be adventurous, both you and your students are sure to appreciate it!
Arrive organized, arrive confident- you were chosen for a reason. And remember, tutoring is not teaching.
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