The search for an English tutor for your child doesn’t end when you find the “right one.” You’ll also want to tell them about your expectations for the lessons as well as your child’s interests, English level, and learning style.
The more the tutor knows about your son or daughter, the better they’ll be able to customize their lessons.
So as a parent, here are five things you’ll want to share with your child’s tutor as early as possible to ensure their English lessons are a success!
From the start, it’s important to tell the tutor what you want your child to take away from the lessons as well as what your son’s or daughter’s wishes are.
Letting the tutor know about your and your child’s goals will allow them to tailor their instruction to your needs. For example:
- If you want the tutor to help your child prepare for a standardized test or do better in school, the tutor will know to focus more on grammar and vocabulary and correct them more often.
- If you want the tutor to prepare the child for the family’s relocation abroad, they’ll know to focus more on speaking and listening skills.
You can also be clear about how strict you want the tutor to be. For example, if you just want the child to have fun with English, you can ask that the tutor play more games and not correct your child as much.
And if you plan to provide a textbook, you’ll also want to let the tutor how much you expect them to stick to it. Sometimes, tutors may pick other materials if they notice the textbook is too challenging or too simple or if a child seems bored or tired. So it’s helpful to let them know if they absolutely need to use your materials or if it’s OK to do something different than planned.
Whatever the case, it’s important to get the tutor on the same page as you early on.
2. Your Child’s English Level
You’ll also want to let the tutor know about your child’s current English abilities. This can be anything from “They just know how to say hello” to “They are in third grade now and seem to be doing better than their classmates.”
You can also share some of your child’s experiences learning English so far. For example:
- Have you exposed your child to English at home through speaking it or playing English TV and songs for them? If so, how they have responded to this?
- How many years has your child studied English in school? At what age did these classes start?
- What is your child currently learning about in their English classes?
- How does your child feel about their English classes and their English teachers?
If there’s any English-related experience your child isn’t happy with, make sure to inform the tutor about it. This allows them to avoid activities that your child won’t enjoy.
It’s not easy to have a child sit down in front of a computer with a stranger speaking to them in a language they don’t totally understand.
So letting an online English tutor know about your child’s interests can help them better connect with and keep your child engaged. For example, if a tutor knows that your daughter likes dancing, they can do some little dances with her during the lesson to keep her engaged.
Here are some things you can share about your child to help the tutor better understand them:
- Hobbies (e.g. sports, singing, dancing, drawing, reading)
- Favorite food, candy, and snacks
- Favorite movies and actors/actresses
- Favorite songs and music groups
- Favorite books
- Favorite video games
- Favorite Youtube channels
4. Learning Style
While tutors will eventually figure out the best way your son or daughter learns, you can save them a lot of time by directly sharing your experiences, such as:
- Tricks you used to teach your child to ride a bike or tie their shoe laces.
- Who your child’s favorite teacher in school is and their teaching style.
- Whether your child likes being complimented (“Great job!” “You’re awesome!”), rewarded (e.g. with stickers), and so on.
- Whether your child likes competition and games.
5. How Often You Want to Check In
Finally, having check-in meetings with your child’s tutor can make their classes more effective. During these check-in meetings, you can:
- Ask questions about your child’s progress.
- Make requests like “Could you teach my daughter more vocabulary?” or “Could you correct my daughter less?”
- Update the tutor on the child’s life, such as “We recently got a puppy, so you can ask my son about it!” or “His best friend recently moved away, so he might be a little sad.”
Tutors will find this kind of information very helpful. Just make sure to tell the tutor how often you’d like to check in so they know what to expect. For example, would you like to check in every two weeks or once a month?
Still Looking for a Tutor?
If you’re shopping around for tutors, check out Engoo! We’re an online tutoring platform that teaches students ages two and up.
We also have materials for children of all levels. If your child doesn’t know the alphabet, no problem! Our kids materials start with just that. And for older kids, we have a range of lesson materials to keep them happy.
You’ll also get one free lesson when you sign up, so why not give it a try?