You can hire a tutor anywhere these days, right? From any company? Or...not even a company, but someone working independently? Right?
Well, of course. You can do anything you want. But, it doesn't mean you should.
There's some important things to think about when it comes to hiring a tutor, the right one for your child(ren). One of which, is, of course, the price tag. But that's not the most important one. There are a few other important factors to consider when you are paying for such an academic service.
It's definitely not only about the paper qualifications, either. Not all degrees are created equal. It can feel overwhelming, confusing, and slightly disheartening to try to find a tutor that suits all of the requirements you need filled. I've taken a closer look at some hopefully helpful criteria that you can use to get some clarity.
Introvert Or Extrovert: Personality
This is, arguably, the most important of any of the criteria. Not every personality will fit every student. Some students just will not click with certain tutors. The fault is no one's in particular; it's just a matter of mixed personalities. Make sure that the tutor you choose meshes well with your child. Kids will learn when they want to, and for them to want to learn, they have to like the person who they are working with. If you've hired a tutor to teach your child, they should inspire your child to learn. And that's hard to do if your child doesn't like them too well.
Paper Matters!: Qualifications
This can be a touchy subject, but it must be addressed. Tutoring is something very often seen as a "side gig," and hence attracts all types of individuals. Here's the thing: not everyone has the academic qualifications to be a tutor. If you are looking for a chemistry tutor, for example, you at the very least need to look for someone who knows the subject matter and has paper proof - ideally a degree from an accredited establishment. If you are looking for someone to teach your child how to read (in English), you need someone with a specialized degree in the English language. That chemistry tutor may be absolutely brilliant, but it's just not the right choice for your child. In a perfect world, you would also want the person teaching your child to have some sort of teaching credential - again, ideally a degree from an accredited establishment.
Teaching degrees are almost as costly as a down payment on a house these days, if not more so. If someone does not have one, ask for experience instead! Some of the best tutors are actually teachers-in-training, or those who have worked in numerous childhood educational establishments.
You Get What You Pay For: The Ultimate Cost
This, again, can be a very touchy subject. Finances usually are. The temptation, as always, is to go with the lowest bidder. Or perhaps the second lowest. You definitely don't want to go with the most expensive on the market. After all, it's saving you money, right?
Nothing could be further from the truth. When it comes to education, to quality teaching, there really is no price tag. I'm not suggesting that price does not matter and you should hire the most expensive tutor out there. Not at all.
But hiring someone with the proper credentials, who can give your child an unforgettable learning experience, at a more expensive rate than an individual who is offering "bottom-of-the-barrel" prices, is going to be a better choice for you, your wallet, and your child in the long run. Think of it as the difference between paying someone to do the job, versus paying someone to do the job well.
A Gut Feeling: The "Right Fit"
The absolute most important thing about finding a tutor suited for your child is that "gut feeling" you get when you speak to them. It's called intuition for a reason - listen to it. Are you comfortable talking to them? Do they come across as professional, educated, and intelligent? Most importantly: are they representing traits that you would want your child to pick up on?
Observe them working with your child. Ask questions for clarification about what and how they have worked with children in the past. Interview them - they should always be open and willing to answer questions.
What does your heart tell you? How does your child feel about working with this person?
For those of you looking to hire a tutor, I hope these have been helpful tips!
If you are looking for a tutor for your child, and you'd like to find out more about how we might help, shoot us an e-mail. With response times as low as 2 hours, we stand behind our word when we say that we place a high priority on finding a solution for you and your child - even if that solution doesn't include us.
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