How the Value of Tutoring Extends Beyond the Report Card

One of the most frequent questions we are asked is “how much will Johnny’s grades improve if we get a tutor”? It’s a valid question, especially in the hyper competitive DC area. After all, a student’s GPA can make or break the scholarships they’re offered, awards they’re given, and colleges they’re accepted to. On the surface, it can seem like grades completely define a child’s future success; but by digging a little deeper we are able to see that there a number of skills that a tutor can help a child develop that allow him or her to be successful in the long run.


Tutors can improve a student’s confidence


One of the biggest values that many students gvalue of tutoring, tutor, tutoringain from receiving one-on-one tutoring is confidence. Regardless of your age, asking for clarification in front of a big group can be intimidating and for many students it is overwhelming. Students will sit in the back of the room not understanding the material being covered but will not raise their hand and speak up. Having a tutor sit down in a private and intimate setting allows for students to ask these questions. Once the student realizes the difference that asking question makes, they may begin to feel more comfortable doing so in the classroom environment.


Tutors create greater accountability


A huge skill that students can take away from tutoring is responsibility. Even for younger students, expectations should be set between the tutor and the student from the first session. For example, if Johnny is working with Tutor Tracy on reading, they can sit down the first time they meet and agree that Johnny will spend 20 minutes reading each night. If at their next session Johnny has not fulfilled his responsibility, Tutor Tracy will be there to ask him what prevented him from doing so. It could be something deeper than just that Johnny wanted to watch TV (or maybe it was just that), but having someone who can take an objective stance and hold Johnny responsible will help teach him a valuable life skill.


Study Skills for Long-Term Success


Perhaps the best skill that any student can gain from tutoring is study skills. These skills can be big or small; maybe it’s as simple as writing in an agenda daily or something more in-depth such as active reading. Since a tutor is with the student outside of school hours and helping him or her to prepare for upcoming assignments or exams, they are able to instill research proven study skills that the student can pick up and use for the rest of his or her life. Many tutors are current teachers, meaning that they are able to help students with skills that they need now, but they are also able to lay the foundation for skills that students will need in the long run. For example, after being a teacher in Fairfax County, our tutor Shelly knew that her student Brian in McLean was going to need to be able learn active reading strategies to succeed in high school. Shelly began working with Brian in seventh grade on active reading strategies and highlighting textbooks so that by the time Brian started ninth grade, he was more than prepared for his demanding course load.


Looking at the three benefits above you can see one common thread: they should improve academic performance. Though the results may not be immediate, students who work with tutors consistently do see an increase in their grades. But working with a tutor can do much more than that; it can provide a student with life skills that will allow him or her to be successful outside of the classroom. After all, your GPA eventually becomes a number or a fun fact and what truly measures your success is your skill set and work ethic.