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 Post subject: The case for Tutoring
PostPosted: Fri Feb 27, 2009 10:42 am 
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My Yr5 son started with a tutor in November. I wish that we had started earlier - not because he will be unprepared for the 11+, I am confident that he will be very well prepared.

The transformation in his school work has be astounding, he has now progressed to near the top of the class in all subjects, and his school teacher is amazed by the improvement (and takes full credit of course)

It is not just 1 hour of tutoring per week, which is excellent; I think that a major part of the improvement is due to the standard and quantity of homework that the tutor sets. Homework from school is rarely challening for able students - my DS can clear his maths in 15 - 30 mins, however the tutors homework can easily take 2 hours, and it is pretty tough (I do have to think quite hard to work out some of the answers myself)

My conclusion is that able kids are rarely challenged in Primary school, they can just coast along. This is the age that will most shape a child's education - There is little wrong getting a tutor to challenge some more, even if they are not taking the 11+

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PostPosted: Fri Feb 27, 2009 11:10 am 
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I fully agree; the down side, of course, is that if you stop tutoring (e.g. when you've done your exams) you can see yet another "astounding transformation" in schoolwork - as we have done this year :x . But other than continuing tutoring indefinitely, which hardly seems practical, I don't know what the answer is - other than to be successful in choice of schools and have the little so-and-so stretched by a really good school.

Mike


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 27, 2009 12:43 pm 
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Joined: Mon Oct 06, 2008 1:41 pm
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Location: South Wilts
In an area where the 11+ tests include Maths and English tutoring should be a win win situation.

My daughter made a huge amount of progress from having one to one time with her tutor and spending extra time with me concentrating on problem areas. None of this time is wasted. Even if we get bad news on Tuesday, everything she has learned will directly benefit her at secondary school, both in terms of her ability and understanding, and most importantly confidence.

Unfortunately, while schools are chasing league table places, as soon as your child is regarded as a secure SAT level 5, they are more likely to be ignored in favour of those children whose progress will be recorded in the league tables.

Even if a group of children in a year group are capable of working beyond the primary curriculum (and I don't mean pushing them, just providing challenging work to reinforce and extend their knowledge), this falls outside the comfort zone of some teachers.

So in essence, tutoring for the 11+ can have huge benefits but I think children will probably reap the rewards at secondary school.


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 27, 2009 1:06 pm 
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mattsurf wrote:

My conclusion is that able kids are rarely challenged in Primary school, they can just coast along. This is the age that will most shape a child's education - There is little wrong getting a tutor to challenge some more, even if they are not taking the 11+


I totally agree with you. However, the challenge that provided quality homework can also be set by the parent not just the tutor. I suppose the child cannot have a tutor for life.

For example, if my son was taught about the area of a shape at school. When he understood the basic, I would set some higher level questions which he had to think harder to find the answers.

There are a lot of resources out there to challenge the more able. As you said, an able child can finish the school Maths homework within 15 mins. Then, more advanced level work can be provided for further challenge.

Of course, I must admit that it also means the parent will need extra time to search the right materials for that challenge.


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 27, 2009 1:53 pm 
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Location: Bexley
Quote:
The transformation in his school work has be astounding, he has now progressed to near the top of the class in all subjects, and his school teacher is amazed by the improvement (and takes full credit of course)


ditto


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 27, 2009 2:32 pm 
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We have always tried to set additional homework - but have trouble enforcing it - with the Tutor DS seems much more motivated to do his homework - even if we do have to nag a bit

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