Things To Look For in a Good Math Tutor

Patience

Working on math problems can be incredibly frustrating because there is often a very clear answer and a very clear order of operations to reach that answer. The problem is the process in between. If you help a student too much during a certain step of the process, you might risk negating all of the effects of the tutoring session. The student needs to be able to replicate the process when they are all on their own, so an impatient tutor’s actions meant to speed up the process toward an answer might mean the whole session is a waste.

Experience

The value of experience is obvious in a field where the material is not changing that much. Tried and true is not an effective strategy in teaching because it reduces students to interchangeable cogs in the machine. In reality, every student is unique and finding the right strategy to make ideas stick is something that takes practice and skill. Where an inexperienced tutor might be limited by what they have seen before, experienced tutors are able to use lessons from before to craft the best experience for what is next.

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Good References

Bringing someone into your home brings certain risks with it, so you want to make sure that you are bringing someone in that you can trust. That might mean a background check or other official means of vetting, but one of the best ways to get to know a math tutor is by talking to the parents of students they have worked with in the past. Most are free from bias, as the ties between parents and tutors are likely colored only by students’ success. The right match is vital to the effectiveness of tutoring, so you want to take the time to know it is a good fit.

Qualifications (To An Extent)

There are certain things that you want to know about your tutor. They need to at least have some education and, hopefully, they got good grades themselves in the subjects that they are tutoring. That said, the resume is only as important as you want it to be. Many successful tutors are not great because they are the smartest, but do well because they know the best ways to reach students. Finding someone that has a good mix of smarts to go with personability is key in tutoring.

Personality

There is nothing worse than a student that is not engaged in class. When you are already dreading math, you reach new lows when working with a tutor that can’t help inject excitement back into you. Sometimes, all it takes is to see the passion that a tutor displays and you will start to feed off of their energy.

Empathy

When working in school, it is almost expected that you are going to get lost because there are so many learning styles and personalities to service. When that moves to tutoring, you want to make sure that you are getting service that is catered to you. A tutor that gets to know their student and sees things through their eyes is able to better use their time together, allowing the student to learn as efficiently as possible.

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