Working with a tutor can be one of the most beneficial steps in transforming struggling students into successful students. The one-on-one attention works wonders by focusing on the student’s individual needs, strengths and weaknesses. The tutor and student relationship is an important one, and when a match is made and a student finds a tutor that truly helps them, magic happens. But magic can only happen if both the student and the tutor do their part. The tutor is responsible for showing up with the right tools to help the student, to provide a safe and comfortable working environment, to know the curriculum and to be patient, honest and on time. The student also has a few responsibilities, and if you ask any qualified tutor, this is what they’d want you to know:
- Show up- Tutors know that life is busy. There are games to play and movies to watch and friends to see and clothes to buy and TV to watch. But these aren’t valid excuses to skip, cancel or reschedule tutoring sessions. Tutors can’t help a student who doesn’t show up. Constantly missing sessions tells the tutor you don’t need or want the help, and can be detrimental to your math grade.
- Show up ON TIME- Coming to the tutoring session is a great start, but if you’re always starting in 5, 10, 15 minutes after the agreed upon start time, you’re wasting valuable time that could be used to explain the curriculum that is causing you so much stress. Be ready on time with all your material (or even a few minutes early!) to show your tutor that you’re serious and want to use the time together to your advantage
- Be Honest- If you don’t get it, say you don’t get it. Don’t pretend to understand just to move the lesson along or because you are worried that you’ve spent too much time on one concept. The tutor can’t read your mind, and needs your honest input on what you are comprehending. They use what you already know to build on for the next concept; so don’t tell them you have a solid foundation when really it’s shaky. They are trained to teach and explain the math concepts in a multitude of ways until you really do understand.
- Come Prepared- Your tutor will use a variety of techniques to help you in the way that works best for you. Help them by providing class notes, your math book, or homework to each tutoring session. This will help your tutor see exactly what you’re working on and can get an idea of the format your teacher is trying to use to teach the specific concept.
- Stay Positive- It’s hard to help someone who is rolling their eyes, sighing , slouching or acting like they’d rather be anywhere else. It’s hard to help someone who isn’t ready to help themself. So remember to think positive and be excited for the opportunity to turn a class you dread into a class you feel confident in. Everyone has bad days, hey, your tutor may have an off day every once in a while, but what matters is that you push through and focus on getting the most out of the time you have with your specialized tutor.