Do You Feel Great When Your Students Focus 100% On Your Lessons?
Feb 3, 2013 Classroom Management 2741 Views
Tutors have a variety of challenges to face when it comes to providing tutoring services for a student. In addition to teaching the designated curriculum and helping students be successful academically, often there are lack of focus issues that arise that must be handled appropriately in order to maintain a healthy environment for learning. Students may contribute their lack of focus to many reasons. Students who seem to become angry, annoyed, or frustrated very easily can disrupt the tutoring session by refusing to comply with the tutors requests, and making outbursts to express his or her displeasure with the environment. When a student is acting out, the situation can often escalate to the point of frustration causing the experience to be very uncomfortable for all of those involved. Any time spent dealing with negative behaviors impacts the learning session, as the student is taking the focus off of the tutor's lesson.
It is important for tutors to be knowledgeable about strategies and interventions for students who become distracted and lose focus easily. The actual tutoring environment can play a large role in how the student behaves. The environment should be a place free of loud noises so that the student can concentrate and you should provide as much positive reinforcement as possible. Tutors should have a routine and expectations regarding work and behavior that are consistent. The consequences for negative behavior should also be clear and consistent.
What about if there were a service that takes the worrying out of your hands. We don't want you worrying about the student being able to focus on their assignment. Your time as a tutor should be spent teaching the lessons, in order to maximize the overall learning experience. Tutor traits want to help you identify the right student for your teaching methods.
Here are some tips and guidelines to go by to help ensure you will have a positive tutoring session with your student:
If the problem is that the work is too difficult and causing frustration, modifications can be made. For students who feel overwhelmed by 50 math problems, reduce the number of problems the student needs to complete to a reasonable number. Reduce the frequency of high-stress situations (reading aloud or solving problems on the board) for the student. On the other hand, if a student is losing focus because the work is too easy and he or she finishes early; create a "work folder" with supplemental activities to complete to avoid unstructured down-time.
When a student appears to be losing focus, allow him or her to take a short break. Be careful not to let the break run over, or you will find that it is even more difficult to get the student back on track. Remember, you are providing a tutoring service so it is important that the student shows positive progress or this may be a reflection on you.
Feeling great for a job well done:
A good session always ends on a positive note. This requires knowing when to stop. There is the old adage of "quitting while you are ahead." Well, this certainly pertains to a tutoring session. Of course, the tutor always wants to accomplish as much as possible in the time allotted, but sometimes it is better to stop a few minutes early rather than get into something that the tutor does not have adequate time for, or for which the client is not totally prepared. Solution? Simple-the tutor should discuss the situation with the client. This is done by telling the client what a fantastic job he/she has done so far and how much time is left. The client is given some alternatives such as: a new skill/area in which to work, quitting early, reviewing some material or some suggested activity by the client. The client should be involved as much as possible in the planning and decision making of the sessions. The more involvement a client has, the more sense of accomplishment he/she will feel during the sessions.
Ending a tutor session on a positive note is extremely important. Tutors want their clients to feel good about themselves and their accomplishments so that these positive feelings will carry over to the client's classes and assignments. These positive feelings will also encourage clients to continue to seek tutorial assistance. This continued assistance will lead to improved knowledge and grades, and eventually, the ultimate tutorial goal, the client's academic independence.