Is your home tutor planning lessons properly?

Is your home tutor planning lessons properly?

A short guide for parents of full-time tutored children

There are different levels of home tutoring that range from hourly after-school support in a particular subject to residential tutors that teach a range of subjects on a full-time basis. How much lesson planning, and where the lesson material comes from, should be appropriate to the circumstances.

In a situation where a pupil is cramming for a particular exam, it is entirely appropriate that the tutor make use of the vast array of practice papers and materials available on the internet. Time constraints and the commonality of the material, if it is for a standard exam, mean it’s not worth trying to reinvent the wheel.

Where a pupil has a full-time private tutor, it should be expected that much of the tutor’s evenings and weekends are spent in lesson planning, and that most of the material is tailored to the unique opportunities, abilities, and educational goals of the student.

There are two situations, regarding lesson plans that would concern me: Firstly, if a parent said that they didn’t have access to lesson plans and post-lesson reports. At Tutors International we always offer a transparent, shared folder that contains all the curriculum materials, educational schedules, reports and action plans so that parents, and I, can see the work being doing by the tutor and the progress of the student.

Secondly, it would ring alarm bells if a parent said that their full-time tutor wasn’t spending most of their non-teaching time planning lessons. The unique opportunity for integrating subjects, for experiential learning, field trips, and bringing in specialist equipment that comes with full-time residential tutoring means that a tutor should be fully immersed in producing tailored materials that will give that pupil an unrivalled academic footing.

As an example, one of our private tutors wanted to plan a treasure hunt in a museum in Washington DC. The city was a short flight away from the family’s home, so a few weeks in advance, the tutor flew to DC one weekend (ostensibly during their own time) to conduct a risk analysis for the outing, to purchase tickets in advance, to view the exhibits and plan the treasure hunt. The risk analysis, trip plan and subsequent report are all discussed and shared with the parents.

At Tutors International, we also invite tutors on other similar placements to comment or contribute where they have particular experience in a given academic area or have materials they have already produced that worked well in another situation.

Comments

Lesson-planning should be tailor-fit to what kind of learner the student is. My son’s home tutor assessed my son as a visual learner. I didn’t even notice! Was she right. Ever since they started, my son has shown a great improvement in school and his interest in studying.

Written by Kristianne Bernard, August 5, 2015

    For sure, if we could know what kind of learner everyone is in everything all the time we could teach them to match their ideal learning style and their outcomes should be significantly better. In a home tutoring environment that’s fine. Although there is little formal research on the subject it is a widely held view from precisely your kind of experience, that one on one teaching when the teacher understands the student is the very best way for a student to learn.

    I am pleased that you found a tutor that got it right. In my experience, that is an exception to the norm.

    Written by adamcaller, August 5, 2015

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