Finding tutors for children is a difficult task for parents. On the one hand, the offer is often confusing, on the other hand, the need is often great. And so many parents rely on recommendations on the Internet or spontaneously fall back on the first offer that comes along. We have researched how parents go about finding suitable tutors and what warnings they should look out for.
Tutors have incomprehensible documents
A diploma of special education is not always enough. In the case of foreign languages, for example, it is important that parents pay attention to whether teachers have international certificates. It is also important that teachers have completed a full course of study and not a shorter course.
Tutors assume guarantees of success from the very beginning
Reputable tutors will first test the child and then, after discussing goals and deadlines for achieving them with parents, present a learning plan, format and frequency of lessons. They will also consider the specific challenges and character of the child. At this stage, it is important for parents to remain relaxed if their child is not declared a genius. Seeking out a* tutor who immediately promises the best results on the upcoming exam in a phone call without even knowing the child usually points to an incompetent person.
Tutors insist on their own methodology
Unfortunately, the reason for this is often the incompetence of a tutor, coupled with a desire to stick to a standardized learning program and not adapt to individual students. Even the most comprehensive collection of instructional materials and proven methods do not guarantee results if they do not do justice to the child because he or she perceives information differently.
Parents do not receive feedback
If a child is in no hurry to share his or her new knowledge with parents after tutoring sessions and also seems unhappy, there is a good chance that a tutor is not a real teacher at all. This may be the case, for example, when scientists act as teachers. They may be experts in their subject, but at the same time they cannot pass on this knowledge. A good teacher always takes into account the individual characteristics of a child and their perceptions. They develop an emotional connection and a trusting relationship with the child. It usually takes about one to three lessons to build a relationship. If it does not, that is a reason to reconsider. If the child is uncomfortable or even scared, stressful situations are inevitable. Furthermore, if the stress is related to a particular subject, it becomes enormously difficult to maintain motivation for additional instruction.
There are only good evaluations, or none
If tutors do not have a negative or neutral rating on the Internet, parents should be cautious. It is no secret that sometimes positive reviews are posted via fake profiles or bots are in use. The lack of good reviews is also a reason to have doubts. Either the tutors are new to the business, which can happen naturally, or they keep changing their account due to negative reviews. In general, the easiest way to avoid searching for other parents’ reviews about tutors is to choose suitable tutors on official online education platforms. The advantage of such platforms is that teachers registered on such online resources have been carefully checked and all diplomas and certificates have been verified. Moreover, it is convenient that reviews from other parents are added up. Therefore, it is easy to see the overall rating of a tutor.
Tutors refrain from giving homework
If homework is not assigned, this can be a cause for concern. For tutors who focus on results, homework is a useful tool that allows them to be informed about the progress of the lesson. Incidentally, it is good if teachers ask for homework to be sent to them for checking after it has been completed, so that they can then focus on personal assistance in the lesson afterwards, rather than having to check homework. The worst is when tutors do the student’s homework with the child, even in the lessons you pay for, unless the parents have asked the teachers to do it.
The fees for the lessons are very low
The popularity of online services for finding professionals of all kinds certainly has an impact on pricing. Often, a minimum price is set by people who have no qualifications or are unfamiliar with the industry, in hopes of attracting customers. Of course, in certain cases, good tutors may charge a price ‘below market’. But prices below 5 euros per hour should be a warning in any case.