Tutoring is more than learning math facts for your child.
When people think of math tutoring, most think it’s only for struggling students. In truth, it can be so much more for every student.
My views on math tutoring have changed drastically from my first time tutoring in college to the first time my child needed tutoring and what happened next. Here’s why.
In college, I was tutoring children that were struggling in Calculus 1. I was paid by the college to sit in a room and when students showed up I tutored them. It was a value-add for the students who needed help understanding the concepts to pass those exams!
Contrast this experience with my son who was going into a very advanced math class his freshman year of high school. The school insisted he have some tutoring to fill in the gaps from middle school that he needed to be successful. Immediately, we got him a tutor from a professional tutoring business and figured that it would just be a few months to fill in the gaps. He stayed with that tutor for three years in math and physics learning much more than just the facts.
Why did he continue tutoring beyond what he actually needed? These answers are why we continued his tutoring for so long and why Fun Wise® Math expanded into math tutoring during the pandemic too.
A Person to ask Questions
Math can be hard. It becomes even more difficult if the student is embarrassed to ask questions in a class full of their friends. When I was young, I felt the same way. Most students need a person to just ask a few questions to truly understand the math concept. In a one-to-one tutoring lesson, the tutor should be completely dedicated to your child’s success. A dedicated tutor follows the “all questions are good questions” mode and gives your child the space to ask questions freely without embarrassment to fully understand the math facts.
Even if your child is good at math, how confident are they? It is surprising how many children that are successful in math still fear or get anxiety from math. The high stakes testing and constant assessments leads to math anxiety for many kids. If the students feel more prepared and confident, it can reduce or eliminate their math anxiety. This was the area I noticed the most improvement with students during Covid. Many children we worked with were successful in math but needed that extra confidence boost to know that “they got this” as my daughter always says.
A great tutor will even spark your child’s creativity with math showing multiple approaches to a question and how it could relate to the real world. This is one of my passions to show children that math is in everything we do and how they can bring those math concepts to their daily activities.
Build a Strong Foundation
Starting early with number sense is extremely critical to develop a strong foundation for the future. Research shows that numbers sense understanding by 1st grade determines math success in 7th grade. Setting your child on a successful trajectory in math begins in preschool with basic counting, shapes and patterns. There are definitely clear milestones for children to reach in the early years and your child’s teacher can share those with you. We have worked with children as young as 4-years old in tutoring because the parents understand the importance of the strong number sense foundation. Though, kindergarten through 2nd grade is more typical to begin tutoring before math gets harder with multiplication. Just like building a house, the foundation needs to be set and ready to go before more building blocks are added.
Based on my experiences both as a parent and as a tutor, the personalized approach to tutoring where children have the space to ask questions and learn at their own pace with a tutor is priceless. It boosts confidence, builds a strong foundation, reduces math anxiety and empowers your child in their own learning process. All of these factors together will set your child up for greater success in math and in life.
Through my experience, I have established Fun Wise® Math tutoring to go above and beyond the traditional math tutoring by bringing our fun game-based methodology to our tutoring students. Please take a moment to watch our videos – https://funwise.com/math-tutoring/ – to see how we make learning fun.