7 Practical Tips For Online Tutoring

7 Practical Tips For Online Tutoring

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In a world dominated by technology, online tutoring has become a convenient and reliable solution for young people seeking a tutoring programme. 

Although mostly similar to the classic method of in-person tutoring, there are a few differences that both the tutor and the student need to adapt to. This will ensure that they are able to reach their academic goals and get the most out of the tutoring programme.

Here are a few tips that tutors can use to make online tutoring work best:

  1. Set up the perfect learning environment
    Since the tutoring will be done online, most of the ‘human feel’ can be lost. However, this can be overcome by creating a more natural and relaxed environment for your student to feel welcome and not feel like they are alone in a room. Doing simple things such as asking the student to get a cup of tea or a glass of water can make them feel more at ease.
    You should also ensure that you have chosen a quiet and private place to do your tutoring so that you are not disturbed or bothered by loud noises. This helps you to remain focused and make the student feel like they are your first priority. Any distractions can cause your student to be unfocused, so you can also ask your student to put away their mobile phone so they are not tempted to check their messages or play games. Remember, young people will follow your lead so you should remove all distractions from your side as well.
  1. Be well organised
    To make sure that your time is used efficiently, ensure that you have structured the lesson well by making a lesson plan that is well organised. You should focus on reaching specific goals, while also allowing sufficient time for interaction and for the lesson to digress a little as you want it to feel more relaxed and not too rigid. However, if you find that the lesson is digressing too much, gently steer the conversation back to the problem at hand. You should also ensure that you have additional material in case you have a fast learner or if tutoring went by swiftly.
    On the technical side, ensure that your laptop or computer is fully charged and that there is no lag or delay with your internet connection. No one wants to be tutored if they have to keep waiting for the screen to stop buffering. If there is a technical glitch, ensure you have already established a back plan so that you and your student are aware of what to do should you be disconnected.
  1. Be easygoing and open while still maintaining professionalism
    The best way for a student to feel relaxed and at ease is to be open and easygoing, while still maintaining a level of professionalism. Finding the right balance can be hard, but with time, you’ll find it easier. You can use ice-breakers to make things lighter. You can also mix in a bit about your personal life in the conversation, but you don’t need to reveal too much about it. For example, it is fine to share some of your hobbies but it is not appropriate for you to share your dating plans. You should also keep conversations age-appropriate and avoid letting your personal problems from affecting your lesson as young people can sense when you are not in the right space of mind.
  1. Encourage discussion and interaction
    Always ensure that you set aside sufficient time for discussion and feedback. You can even allow for a few minutes of downtime by doing something that can allow them to refocus. It can be difficult to monitor their engagement during online tutoring so ensure that you make use of props, charts, or objects to help keep the student engaged. You can also find something that will allow you to connect with your student, such as music or making reference to movies or to a hobby that they may be interested in.
    You should also set realistic expectations, as each child has unique learning capabilities and will learn at their own pace. Do not rush through each lesson but rather be patient and remain focused. It will also be useful to develop an understanding of the kind of student you are tutoring. Some can be very direct and will give you a lot of feedback, while others can be more reserved and prefer that you do most of the talking.
  1. Set objectives and specific targets
    When planning your lesson, you should also set objectives and targets that you can use to measure your progress. Try to be slightly ahead of your targets so that if you fall behind a little, you will be able to easily catch up on your lessons. You should also ensure that you do not rush through your curriculum and that you adjust your lesson plan depending on the speed at which your student is learning. This means that your lesson plan has to be tailored to suit each student to ensure that you cover all sections of the subject that you are tutoring. You do not want to be rushing the last section if you did not plan correctly.
  1.  Prepare tests and quizzes
    The best way to measure your student’s progress and ensure if they have understood your tutoring is to set tests, quizzes, and assignments. Setting tests can help train the student to utilise their time well for their real exams. It can also help to specifically see where your student is excelling or falling behind. Tests can be scheduled ones so that your student can prepare for your test but it is also beneficial to set a spot test or two to ensure that your student is able to understand the work rather than just memorise it. Assignments help to allow the child to work independently and figure the work out on their own.
    Don’t set too long assignments or tests as this can deter them from doing the work since they already have homework from school. If they do fail the test, do not get upset or angry. Rather be supportive and encouraging as students thrive better in a positive environment. Use words like, “Let’s see where WE went wrong” or “Let’s see how WE can find another way to arrive at the correct answer.” Always be optimistic.
  1. Know your student and make tutoring fun
    Part of making online tutoring a success is to make sure you fully understand your student and what their needs are and how much can they retain before they become disengaged or uninterested. It is also important to keep tutoring fun so that the student is excited to learn and does not feel anxious or stressed for the tutoring session. Everyone retains much more when they are having a good time, so make sure to keep sessions exciting.

With these tips, you should be able to make your online tutoring sessions productive, impactful and useful so that your student can reach their academic goals.

GT Scholars is a not-for-profit social enterprise and registered charity. We run after-school and weekend programmes that help young people achieve their academic and career aspirations. Our programmes include tutoring, mentoring and enrichment sessions for young people aged 11-18. Contact us if you would like to know more about any of our programmes and courses.

In the Know – Ace your exams!

In the Know – Ace your exams!

In The Know Parents What's new?

It’s that time of year when young people start worrying about their upcoming exams. However, studying for exams does not have to strike fear into their minds! This week we bring you three great ways that will help to get their brains into gear for exams!

Ready, Set, Go: Acing Your Exams!
GT Scholars will be hosting our popular Ready, Set, Go: Acing Your Exams! workshop that aims to help young people conquer their exams. This free workshop is suitable for young people aged 12-16 and helps them by improving study skills, time management, and mindset techniques. It also helps young people navigate the stress and demands of exams. To book your ticket, click here.

Gojimo
Have you heard of Gojimo? It’s a free app that helps young people aged 13-18 with their homework and exam revision. Not only do young people gain access to quizzes, practice questions and study tips, but they can also learn about future careers, universities, apprenticeships and so much more! To find out more about Gojimo and the subjects covered, click here.

Seneca Learning
Seneca Learning is an online platform which encourages young people to study by using humour in the form of GIFs and memes. The site’s algorithm works to identify questions that young people struggle with and uses alternative formats that help them to better understand and answer correctly. Young people can join a class or revise on their own. To find out more, click here.

GT Scholars is a not-for-profit social enterprise and registered charity. We run after-school and weekend programmes that help young people achieve their academic and career aspirations. Our programmes include tutoring, mentoring and enrichment sessions for young people aged 11-18. Contact us if you would like to know more about any of our programmes and courses.

In the Know – Upcoming scholarship opportunities!

In the Know – Upcoming scholarship opportunities!

In The Know Parents What's new?

University can be quite expensive, but there are many different ways young people can access funding for tuition, accommodation or books. One such way is through a scholarship programme. Here are three scholarship opportunities that are currently open for young people looking to join an undergraduate engineering programme at a university.

The Kingsbury Scholarship
The Kingsbury Scholarship is a highly prestigious engineering scholarship aimed at bright and dynamic students who intend to study at Imperial College London. With a total value of £20,000 per year for up to 4 years, eligible candidates must also agree to take part in one or more internships or work placements in a UK engineering industry, either before their start at Imperial, as part of their course, or in two or more summer breaks. Online applications must be submitted no later than 5pm on Thursday, 1st June 2018. Find out more here.

Chris Seymour Bursary
The Chris Seymour Bursary aims to support one UK female student in financial need who wants to study electronic or electrical engineering at University College London. The award will be £10,416 per year, based on a three-year programme and is subject to satisfactory academic progress. Applicants must hold an offer of admission to UCL to study a full-time undergraduate degree within the UCL Faculty of Engineering Sciences. The deadline for the application is Friday, 6th July 2018 at 5pm. Find out more here.

IGEM Undergraduate Scholarship
The Institute of Gas Engineers & Managers Undergraduate Scholarship is open to students who currently hold a conditional or unconditional offer for an undergraduate Engineering Council accredited course at any university in the UK. Successful students will receive up to £9,000 for full-time study. Renewal of the funding after the first year is conditional on satisfactory progress being made. Applications must be submitted by Saturday, 30th June 2018. Find out more here.

GT Scholars offers after-school programmes that focus on social mobility, growth mindset and helping young people to achieve their aspirations. Our programmes include tutoring, mentoring and enrichment sessions for young people aged 11-16. If you would like to know more, please contact us here.

In the Know – Spring STEM activities!

In the Know – Spring STEM activities!

In The Know Parents What's new?

With the season of Spring officially beginning, we are sure that your child is eager to put their winter jackets away and step into the warm sunshine (when it does eventually return). While they wait for the sun to show up, here are some upcoming events and fun activities for them to learn more about the fascinating world of science, technology, engineering and maths.

Imperial Festival 2018
The annual Imperial Festival returns on the 28th-29th April at the South Kensington Campus of Imperial College London. This free event is open to all ages and offers a showcase of technological marvels to celebrate the Year of Engineering, a hands-on zone for families, and talks from world-leading thinkers and innovators. There will also be a chance to go behind-the-scenes and explore the latest research and innovations from Imperial College London through interactive demonstrations, workshops and live experiments. Find out more here.

Young Astronomers Workshop
The Planetarium & Astronomy Centre of the Royal Observatory in Greenwich offers free weekend workshops for young aspiring astronomers. Running from the 1st of April to the 30th of June, these workshops will allow your child to learn about space science and exploration, and also learn more about careers in astronomy from the team of Observatory Explainers. Find out more here.

The Deep Time Walk
The Deep Time Walk is a ground-breaking new project, which enables anyone, anywhere to experience a walking audio history of the living Earth. As you walk across 4.6km of deep time (representing 4.6bn years of Earth’s big history), you witness the formation of our planet and its self-sustaining nature and you experience long geological processes and self-regulating patterns that have produced our current conditions. The app is available for both Apple and Android devices. You can also find out more here.

The GT Scholars Programme is an after-school programme that focuses on social mobility, growth mindset and helping young people to achieve their aspirations. The programme includes tutoring, mentoring and enrichment sessions for young people aged 11-16. If you would like to know more, please contact us here.

In the Know – Activities for British Science Week 2018!

In the Know – Activities for British Science Week 2018!

In The Know Parents What's new?

British Science Week is an annual ten-day celebration of science, technology, engineering and maths, featuring entertaining and engaging events and activities across the UK for young people and adults. Below are some of these activities to get your child excited about science this week.

British Science Week Poster Competition
Creative students can immerse themselves in science by taking part in this poster competition. The theme for this year is exploration and discovery, and there is an array of great prizes up for grabs. Students can enter individually or as a team, with help from their school. In the senior category, entrants must be in Year 7 to 9. There is still time to submit your poster as the closing date for entries is Friday the 6th of April 2018. Find out more here.

App Design Workshop
This free workshop is for young aspirational app designers between the ages of 10 and 14. At this event, they will learn more about designing digital products and software, and by the end of the workshop, they would have produced their first app prototype to present to the group. Additionally, they will also learn about presentation skills and practice. The event is taking place tomorrow, Saturday the 17th of March 2018 from 9.30am to 5pm at the Woolwich Centre Library. Find out more here.

Zoom In: A Closer Look at Science
Part of the Science Week programme at the British Museum, this free event promises to be interesting. You will get a chance to meet the Museum’s scientists and conservators, and take a closer look at work that goes on behind the scenes. You will also discover how science unlocks objects’ secrets, learn about techniques used to preserve objects for future generations, and see the latest technology in action. The event is taking place tomorrow, Saturday the 17th of March 2018 from 10am to 4pm at the Great Court in the British Museum. Find out more here.

The GT Scholars Programme is an after-school programme that focuses on social mobility, growth mindset and helping young people to achieve their aspirations. The programme includes tutoring, mentoring and enrichment sessions for young people aged 11-16. If you would like to know more, please contact us here.