When is it Time for a Tutor?

Time for a tutor

When is it Time for a Tutor?

One of the most difficult and frustrating moments for parents is seeing their child struggle in school. Often times it happens suddenly as a child enters a new grade and the work and expectations become more rigorous. What can a parent do when their child’s academic progress begins to falter? In this article, you’ll learn when it is time for a tutor.

Start by Talking to Your Child’s Teachers

As a teacher, it is always encouraging when parents take the initiative to be a partner in their child’s education. With the advent of more and more technologically infused classrooms, it is easier than ever to get a two-dimensional snapshot of your child’s grades or assignments from your personal electronic devices. However, there is something to be said for actually making those personal, human connections with your child’s teachers to get a more holistic look.
Not everything in your child’s educational experience is a quantifiable grade or part of a digital learning environment. Be sure to talk to your child’s teachers about areas of strength and weakness, use of class time, and school behavior. Sometimes struggles in school have more to do with social or emotional factors than actual academic understanding. Establishing a rapport with your child’s teachers can help give insight into these factors and possible ways to address them. That being said, if your child is truly struggling with their understanding of class material, regardless of the cause, it may be time to consider bringing in some extra help.

Explore Support Programs in Your Child’s School

Many times I see parents immediately place the expectation of academic remediation onto their child’s school faculty. Most teachers make themselves available before school, after school, or even at lunch to offer extra support to struggling students. Some schools even offer formal “Homework Club” type programs to encourage students to stay after school to complete their homework and get extra help. This can sometimes prove to be a benefit if there is enough time and attention to go around.
Keep in mind, in these types of situations your child will likely not be the only one seeking out help. This means your child may only be spending a fraction of their time interacting with a teacher about personal academic struggles. Furthermore, depending on the ratio of faculty to students, many of these situations can devolve into social environments – meaning the amount of significant academic work that gets done can be negligible.

The Benefits of Hiring a Tutor

Bringing a tutor into the mix can be an effective and targeted approach to supporting a struggling student. By doing your research, you can choose from many qualified educators who would be willing to provide your child with direct, one-on-one instruction and practice in areas of academic weakness. As the employer, you are free to negotiate the optimal time, environment, and price you are looking for.

A tutor should be able to create an individualized plan for improvement by combining information from talking to your child, from the materials they bring home from school, and from the feedback you can provide from your child’s teachers. A good tutor can not only help with the mastery of particular skills, but can also help develop personalized study habits that will help your student moving forward in all academic areas. In the long-run, tutors can serve as a valuable asset in helping your child conquer academic struggles and help prevent similar struggles in the future.

Ultimately, all students can be successful. Some students simply need additional support and help during their educational careers. As a parent, creating that environment for success often means combining multiple perspectives and resources to give your child a broad array of opportunities to master concepts and skills. Families who bring together teacher feedback, practice outside of the classroom, and tutoring create an environment where learning is a priority and academic struggles are proactively addressed before they escalate.

So if it’s time for a tutor for your student, then it’s time to find a tutor in your area using our searchable database of tutors ready to help your child be successful.


About Sheldon S

Sheldon Soper is a ten year veteran of the teaching profession and currently serves as a junior high school teacher in southern New Jersey. His primary focus is building reading, writing, and research skills in his students. He holds two degrees from Rutgers University: a B.A. in History as well as a M.Ed. in Elementary Education. He holds teaching certifications in English Language Arts, Social Studies, and Elementary Education. Sheldon has also worked as a tutor for grades ranging from second through high school in a wide variety of subjects including reading, writing, calculus, chemistry, algebra, and test prep. In addition to his teaching career, Sheldon is also a content writer for a variety of education, technology, and parenting websites.

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