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Does My Child Need A Tutor?

09.05.2013    |    Posted by:
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Does My Child Need A Tutor?


Students are tutored for a variety of reasons: To improve the understanding of concepts in a given subject area, to hone in on a specific study skills such as note taking or test preparation, to further enrich a student’s experience beyond the standard curriculum, or to prepare for school/college entrance exams. Tutors can also relieve the emotional tension created when parents try to assist their children with homework. It is important to be clear on your reasons for seeking a tutor.

 When faced with a youngster who is struggling in school, he/she may need a tutor to get the extra practice, attention and confidence needed to improve his/her performance in school.



What to Look For in a Tutor 

• Look for someone who specializes in teaching students your child’s age. If your child has special needs, ask their teacher for some recommendations.

• If your child is in middle school or high school and simply needs extra help in one subject area, consider older students who have excelled in the subject. This is cheaper and can be as effective as a professional tutor. Place a call to your high school’s guidance counselor’s office and ask if they can suggest an honors student who might be interested in the job.

• Consider if your child has a particular learning style and ask the tutor to describe his/her special training and the different modalities he/she uses when working with students. 

• After 6 hours of school, your child will not be looking forward to more school. Sessions should engage your child with interesting activities. A tutor is not your child’s teacher, and while the sessions need to be structured and serious, they also need to be enjoyable.

• Set realistic goals; collaborate with the tutor, and ideally the teacher, to create a plan from which the tutor will teach. Consider the possibility that your child might need to meet with the tutor more than once a week. The tutor should be willing to communicate with your child’s teacher on a regular basis.

• Expect a tutor to give an honest report of your child’s progress. In addition, get an assessment of your child’s progress from his/her teacher. Parents should realize and accept that under the best of circumstances their child’s abilities and skills may improve slowly. 

• Be sure to ask for a tutor’s credentials and references of experience. 

How Parents Can Support the Tutor

• Be sure you and your child can commit to the time requirements of tutoring. This might mean rearranging or eliminating some after school activities.

• Be respectful of the tutor’s time. Be on time for sessions and if you need to cancel, do so as soon as your know. 

• If you want to discuss your child’s progress in depth, schedule a time separate from the tutoring session to do so. This way the tutor is prepared and can speak candidly without your child feeling judged. 

• Prepare your child to be a participant in the tutoring by discussing with him/her the purpose and benefits of such assistance.


There are many excellent tutoring services available on Cape Cod.