When you see how hard your child is working without much improvement in grades, it’s discouraging. What about the child who stresses out about homework assignments and tests? Maybe your child simply doesn’t like school.
In any of these situations, a tutor can help. But how do you find the best tutor for your child?
Read our mini-guide to hiring a tutor who makes the best fit for your child and their unique needs and personality.
Determine Your Child’s Needs
Tutors, like children, come in all sizes. That’s why it’s critical to spend time determining what your child needs—before you start looking for a tutor.
Think about how your child relates to other people. If they do well in small groups, you might consider group tutoring. If you feel they need more one-on-one attention, look for a private tutor.
Know your budget. Private, one-on-one tutoring is often more expensive than group sessions.
Your budget is also tied to how much tutoring your child receives. Keep in mind that you’ll likely see better results with more frequent tutoring sessions.
Another thing to consider is whether your child needs help with more than one subject. You may need more than one tutor unless you find someone who’s qualified to tutor multiple subjects.
Begin your search by talking to people in your immediate circle.
Word of Mouth
Finding a tutor is a bit like looking for a new doctor or dentist. Just like you ask friends and family for recommendations on a good health care provider, you can ask for tutor referrals.
Don’t forget to ask outside your circle of friends. Talk to your child’s teachers. Teachers and school counselors may have a list of prospective tutors they’re happy to share with parents.
Check the board at your local library. Tutors often post their information at the library. You can also ask the librarian in the children or young adult section.
Consider an Online Tutor
Online tutoring is growing in popularity for students who need help with homework assignments after school hours.
When you hire an online tutor, you get flexibility and technology combined. Online tutoring is usually convenient. No traveling to another location!
As far as technology goes, online tutors use a variety of tools to engage your child. They may use instant messaging or video chat. They may also use shared whiteboards, educational videos, and other interactive tools.
Check Credentials Before Hiring a Tutor
Once you find a tutor or tutoring center that you feel is a good fit, do more research.
Check the tutor’s credentials. If your child needs help with writing, science, math or another subject, make sure the tutor has experience teaching that subject. Also, ask how much experience they have working with children at your child’s grade level.
Ask about the tutor’s track record. This could include parent surveys that indicate the tutor helped their child raise test scores and improve grades.
Don’t shy away from graduate students. Depending on their degree path, they may have strong content knowledge of the subject your child needs help mastering.
Why Not Look for a Peer Tutor?
Peer tutors are students in the same grade as your child (or higher). These are students with proven proficiency in the subjects they tutor.
Like any tutor, peer tutors don’t do the work for your child. Rather, they help guide your child so that they can complete assignments on their own.
The reason peer tutors are so helpful is that students often relate better to fellow students than to a teacher.
Great Job Helping Your Child Succeed
As a parent of a school-age child, the number one goal is helping your child succeed. Hopefully, our guide helps you begin the process of hiring a tutor.
If you enjoyed this post, check out more articles on parenting from our archives.
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