If you can think it, you can Google it. So whatever subject, worksheet, re-teaching or enrichment materials
you may need are only a click away via the internet. Below is a very short list of those resources that
I have used.
It is always helpful to have back up review work for your students to work on especially if they say they have
finished all of their work or have forgotten their book and homework at school.
When I tutored full-time, my car was like a portable schoolroom. While Iím not suggesting that you become
a teacher supply store on wheels, I do recommend having some of these handy tools in tow. I have had to
utilize the things that I brought to a session many times and it helped us keep going without missing a beat.
Keeping a Notebook:
Once you have several students in the mix, especially if you meet with them back to back, it is always helpful
to keep a notebook and a running record of the things you covered with each student, their respective areas
of challenge, as well ideas and activities for next time.
You may have been given contact info for the teacher and need to be in touch on occasion. You will be able
to make a note here so that you can give updates as you go and record necessary information that will maximize
How to Begin with a New Student
Getting to Know You
By Donna Duffy
Here are a few quick tips to help your student feel more at ease during your tutoring sessions.
Share a few things about yourself by finding common points of interest and affinity. Here is an opportunity
for you to let your student know a bit about you. You may have had the same struggles in this subject when you
were in school, perhaps you like the same sports team, or you went to the same high school. Find a place to
connect and help your student to know you are in their corner.
You are an ally By building a bridge; they will help understand that you are there to help
clarify things for them. Help bring insight and understanding by showing another way to approach the
problem or passage, assignment or project. I often use graphic organizers to help me set up my work.
I reveal my need of these things in my everyday life and show them how they can be added to their toolkit
for success. It helps for me to make myself vulnerable by saying, "I find this helps me and I use it all
the time." OR "Maybe youíre like me and need to read something several times before you get itóhere's
how I get around that problem." My openness puts them at ease and helps them to trust that I am on their
side. I know what it's like to struggle.
Seek to understand Some students have been through a hard time and have found the subject you're
helping with to be incredibly challenging. They may be shy and withdrawn; lacking in motivation and confidence.
Meet them where they are and take them on from there. Do your best to truly relate to the need at hand and
then do your best to help them work through it. You have an opportunity to connect one-on-one and focus in
the area of challenge. That student may be one of a class of 25 and your riveted attention on their academic
challenge may be the most they have received in a long time. Make the most of that time and give of your best.
Help the student to understand that you are expecting the same from them and that you believe they can do it.
A word of encouragement and praise Lastly, letís not underestimate the power of our words. Words that
build confidence and motivation can help a student press forward toward academic goals they may have otherwise
abandoned. Your words can help a child believe in himself again. As you cheer them on and praise their
efforts, they will strive to work harder. You are helping raise the bar and your words of praise give
them the necessary encouragement to go for it!
The great reward for a tutor is to see their students move beyond the fog and the quagmire, out into the
clear and walking on solid ground. I trust these few bridge building tips will help you establish an
excellent rapport with students as you help them in their quest toward academic confidence and success!