It is never a pleasant experience when your child is struggling at school. The first time they bring home a failing grade, get a low score on a project or scream at you about their hatred for a particular subject area. As a parent, you may not know where to begin the process to get help and the whole situation can be overwhelming and an uphill battle.
When you finally feel like you have exhausted all of your options (rewards, bribery, yelling) and hit an educational roadblock, the best thing you can do is hire a tutor! A tutor can help your child build their confidence around a specific content area, improve grades, and get things back on the right track. Did you know that a tutor can also help when studying for a standardized exam or writing a history paper that has been a nagging issue for weeks? Take a look at the list below to identify the top 6 signs that your child needs a tutor.
The most obvious sign that your child needs help in school is a change in grades. Slipping grades can happen slowly over time or suddenly when content materials change and new ideas are presented within a curriculum or subject area. As a parent, it is vital to be aware of how your child is performing in school and be looking for those warning signs when they first occur. Make sure you are reviewing all tests and assignments that come home, check online grades if that option is available, and contact the teacher(s) to get more information if your child isn’t forthcoming with grades.
#2-Loss of confidence when it comes to school
It is perfectly normal to lack confidence when dealing with a new subject or content area. However, if a lack of confidence starts to interfere with grades and causes anxiety, it is time to get help. A tutor can work with your child on numerous school-related task such as homework, test prep, and specific subject area weaknesses. With each tutoring session, your child will improve their knowledge, which will increase grades, reduce anxiety, and help with confidence in school.
#3- A state of constant confusion
The first time a skill or content area is introduced to a student, there is a level of disequilibrium; a short period where the task is new and confusing. Once the skill is master and equilibrium is met, anxiety is reduced, the subject area becomes less intimidating, and new concepts can be further developed. However, if your child is in a constant state of disequilibrium, they will never truly grasp the skill. This constant state of confusion will interfere with grades, confidence, and their overall attitude towards school. A tutor can help by breaking apart difficult content and teach your child on an individual and personalized basis. This one-on-one teaching style can help your child to reach a state of equilibrium and build on existing skills.
#4- Frequent meltdowns about school and homework
The word meltdown is often associated with young children who don’t get their way and have fits of uncontrollable behavior. However, meltdowns aren’t reserved to disgruntled toddlers! Meltdowns can occur when your child has no other way to express their feelings (frustration, confusion, stress) and have an emotional eruption. This loss of control can also be a warning sign that something bigger is at play. It is important to read deeper into the meltdown and discover the root of the problem. Is school too hard? Are you stressed out about a big exam? Is homework too overwhelming and you can’t calm your mind after a long day at school? If this is the case, a tutor can better prepare your child and release some stress and anxiety through a tailor education plan that fits their every need.
#5- Your child doesn’t want to attend school
If your child is avoiding school and doesn’t want to attend on a regular basis, this may be a sign that they are struggling. Avoidance is a natural behavior for both children and adults and it makes complete sense to want to avoid a situation that provides discomfort. A tutor can help your child become more confident with the content and therefore increase their comfort level at school.
#6-Lack of time management when dealing with school or assignments
Time management issues can present themselves in two ways: 1) spending too much time on assignments or 2) not doing the assignments at all. If your child is spending hours on their homework or consistently procrastinating, these may be signs that they need additional help. A tutor can get your child back on track by making assignments more meaningful and allocating time more efficiently. A tutor doesn’t just teach the content but also how to work through the materials in an efficient manner so that your child isn’t spending too much time on school work or losing focus.
There are many different reasons your child may need a tutor, but the most important thing is not to ignore the warning signs. The sooner you realize your child needs help, the faster the problem can be addressed and fixed with additional help and support. If you found this blog helpful, take a look at “Four steps to hire the right tutor.”