Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Five Options for Tutoring a Child - Guest Post by Jessica Socheski

The following guest post was contributed via email submission by Jessica Socheski. Today, she shares tips on how to secure effective tutoring for your child. Take it away Jessica...

While some parents might feel reluctant about hiring a tutor to help their children, this can often be a wonderful way to help children who are having a difficult time listening and learning from their own moms or dads. Because, each child is different and subsequently learns in their own unique style, it is important to explore different types of tutoring. Here are 5 major ways to tutor your child and how they can work for different personalities.

1. Private Tutoring
The most commonly referred to style of tutoring is one-on-one instruction. Usually this comes in the form of meeting with a teacher after class or when a tutor comes directly to the child’s home once or multiple times per week. The National Center for Learning Disabilities recommends this as “perhaps, the most desirable” form of tutoring because the “tutor considers your child’s needs and the school’s and teacher’s expectations.” Tutors can be retired or active teachers or college students.

Private tutoring usually works well for any student because it is undivided attention from a person who has been chosen based on their knowledge and fit with the specific child. Although parents would like to be the ones who can help their kiddos with everything, it is sometimes better to relieve tension from the parent-child relationship by bringing in a third party to inspire and motivate the child.

2. Tutoring Centers
A closely related option to private tutoring is finding a local tutoring center. At places such as Sylvan or Huntington, students can work with a one-on-one instructor and/ or in groups to get the attention and reinforcement they need. Centers have also proven effective by using specifically developed methods of teaching concepts to accompany classroom learning. This method can work very well for many children but especially more social ones who want to be with people.

3. Online Tutoring
A newer approach that may work for older students who can work independently on a computer is called online tutoring. This works when an instructor meets in real time with a student over the internet. Using a headset or video calling program, the tutor and the student are able to interact mimicking a face to face meeting.

4. Tutoring Software
“From the earliest days of computers, researchers have strived to develop computer tutors that are as effective as human tutors” writes Kurt VanLehn in his paper on intelligent tutoring systems. However, it is hard for software alone to stand in for a human who can oversee and know where a child does not understand a concept.

However, this does not mean that computer programs are totally out. Depending on the child, tutoring software might be the perfect method for practicing problems and reinforcing concepts. And for children who love technology, this is a potential way to help them become excited about learning.

5. Peer Tutoring
Peer tutoring is a tutoring arrangement where students work in pairs or groups with students of the same age or older children. This kind of environment can help kids to learn and practice academic tasks, but it is not the best fit for every child and may not be able to totally replace normal tutoring.

The National Education Council found in a study that “Most of the students benefited from peer tutoring in some way, but same-age tutors were as effective as cross-age tutors.” So peer tutoring can have good effects if the child can learn from others well and work in group situations.

So when searching for tutoring for kids, first identify what strategy seems to work well with your individual child’s learning style. 

Jessica contributed this piece as a guest contributor via email submission. While insightful, please note, her views are exclusively her own and not necessarily shared by HerMamas.com. 


  1. I like the above all way of tutoring a child but specially i supports the private tutoring or home tutor . Their are several points as my point of view . As : Best understanding between teacher and student , time relaxation , motivating to parents also .

  2. Child tutoring is one of important issue of concern . Because child is in adolescent and what tutors will give they grab it and apply the same in their future. So, it is necessary that what is communicated by the tutor clearly understand by student , parents will help in this as well .


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