Look for someone who:
1. SETS A WARM and comfortable environment for learning. Does the tutor provide the setting which compliments your child’s learning style at a time when your child is fresh?
2. HELPS ENHANCE YOUR child’s self-esteem. Your child should feel positive when working with the tutor in order to create the good rapport essential to repairing the developed weaknesses. Give the relationship a few weeks to develop, but if it doesn’t, look for another tutor.
3. HAS A REPERTOIRE of strategies; is creative/innovative. It is essential that a student with learning problems work with a tutor who has been trained to use the appropriate multisensory techniques.
4. KNOWS ABOUT AND can accommodate various learning styles. Is your child a visual learner? Learns through seeing . . . Is she an auditory learner? Learns through hearing . . . Is she a tactile/kinesthetic learner? Learns through touching, moving, doing . . .
5. COMMUNICATES FORTHRIGHTLY and effectively with you and your child. It is equally important that the tutor be able to effectively communicate the learning strategies and content subject. Can she communicate with you as you monitor the progress—when the child is not present? Is she clear on whether you are focusing on remedial work, content subjects, or how to study.
6. CHALLENGES BUT DOESN’T frustrate your child. Resist the temptation to try to accomplish too much or have lessons that are so long as to lose the student’s attention. Set a minimum of two sessions a week. Often practice and repetition are needed to facilitate “breaking through” to a normal learning pattern.
7. HAS A WORKING knowledge of current curriculum. If the goal is anything other than learning strategies or how to study, be sure the tutor has an excellent grasp of the curriculum which your child needs help with.
8. ASSESSES YOUR CHILD’S individual needs. Is the tutor capable of quickly determining where your child is academically? What she needs to know to catch up? What are her strengths and weaknesses?
9. IS STATE CERTIFIED; has teaching experience. While certification doesn’t guarantee that you will have a good tutor, it is a starting point for determining the qualifications of the tutor. Be sure to ask about training, experience, and references. Don’t hire a qualified tutoring service that will later turn your child over to an unqualified tutor.
10. IS WILLING TO communicate with your child’s teacher. Teachers feel reassured to know that someone is helping a student, and they are working toward common goals.