Your high school student is in honors classes. It doesn’t matter if it’s just a couple or his entire schedule is full. Those classes, coupled with SAT prep and college preparation work, can be a lot to handle. While your teen may have trouble keeping up, he may just need a little extra help staying on track so that he can meet his ultimate college goal. Hiring a tutor is a great way to maintain your own parent/child relationship (not adding schoolwork frustration to the mix) while ensuring your teen is on the right academic track.
Talk to Your Teen
Including your teen in the planning process is critical. If he doesn’t really need a tutor, but could benefit from one, ask him how he feels. He may be open to having some extra help or to learning some new organizational or study skills. He may just want you to continue letting him do his own thing. If he’s having trouble, tutoring isn’t optional, but he should be included in the conversation about why he needs it and the approach you’ll take to finding it.
Private or Group
There are a number of different tutoring options available to high school students. Group tutoring, like SAT prep classes, may help give him the edge he needs without boring him with one-on-one attention. Private tutoring, whether in-home or at a formal tutoring office, can help him to focus on his individual needs – whether that’s help in a specific class or some guidance on how to write a series of college application essays. Work with your teen to decide which option will best serve his needs.
Working with Potential Tutors
You can’t choose a tutor based on a current deal, special, or coupon. If your teen doesn’t identify with the person helping him, he won’t be receptive to the information you’re trying to present. It doesn’t matter if you’re using an established tutoring company or hiring a private tutor. Do you need a college student familiar with these classes? Will your teen listen to a teacher he knows? Maybe he needs to hear advice from a complete stranger. Again, you need to work together to make sure your teen is comfortable. Don’t sign a contract with any group until your child has had at least one or two sessions so you can gauge his reaction and reception levels.
Most kids don’t like the need for tutoring. Those who need it for additional advancement may be more receptive, but that doesn’t mean you can sacrifice comfort and quality. Take the time to talk to your teen and listen to his responses and you’ll use to find a tutor is easier than you had initially imagined.