Tutoring is a fun and rewarding experience that will help you and your students learn and progress. Many tutors transition from a school environment into private tutoring and the experience and style is vastly different, what may have made you an excellent teacher, may not work for a one-to-one teaching session. If you’re starting out as a new tutor, follow these three top tips for tutoring success and to make the most out of your new-found career choice.
- Build Rapport
While changing from a classroom of thirty children to just one child may be nerve-wracking for you, the student is likely to be feeling the same pressure. While they may have slipped under the radar in school, a one-on-one tutoring session is intense as they are the only one who will be answering your questions.
Building rapport can take time; it takes lots of trust and confidence for tutees to open up and be comfortable in the environment, particularly if they’re scared to make mistakes. Answering questions and making mistakes can make students feel like they are in the spotlight, so make sure a question is more like a conversation so that they can understand why they made a mistake. In time your student will come to realise that you’re a coach, not an assessor.
- Understand The Goals
Parents will commonly discuss the reason they have decided to tutor their child with you privately, but it is likely that the student has different goals, or perceives their parents’ goals differently. Many children will often think they have tutoring, so they pass a particular exam, but this is a high-pressure situation for a child to be in.
Instead of exam pressure, discuss what the student wants to achieve and build a set of goals that are manageable, fun and achievable for the child, so they feel like they have something to aim for. This way the tutee will still see success, without the stress and pressure of an exam goal which can make children nervous and uncomfortable which will stop them learning anything at all.
Unlike a school scenario, you have much more flexibility to create engaging lesson plans that are tailored to the tutee’s hobbies, interesting and rationale. Your tutee shouldn’t see you as another teacher from school, but a coach who is improving their skills. You’ll feel the collaboration yourself when they hit their targets thanks to your assistance.
One of the best ways to show that you are a team throughout your tutoring sessions is to share your own experiences. While teachers guard their private lives closely at school, this tutoring method can help to build trust and support. A tutee will realise that they are not alone if they know their tutor has gone through the same experiences. This method of tutoring helps to instil self-confidence in the tutee and gives them the belief that they can overcome any study hurdle as their tutor has done it too.