The tutoring landscape is shifting. It is going where the world is - online! The young population that is our children of school-going age are finding many of their answers online more than ever before. It would not be too difficult to understand that they are more likely to relate to virtual
mode of learning than the traditional method of learning via physical classes.
However, with this evolved acceptance of online tutoring among the younger population and its growing popularity we tend to wonder if this mode of tutoring also calls for the same or different level of parental guidance and involvement.
Due to its utmost flexibility and self-paced attributes, it is easy to assume that parents will have little or no role to play to support students for online tutorials. However, we must not forget that most of the online programs are designed keeping in mind parents as the decision-makers- right from the selection of the platform to pursuing of the particular programs to tracking the child’s progress and all these attributes are
all the more true keeping Indian families in mind.
Selecting the course or program
Parents with their ability to see the big picture from student’s current tutoring need analysis to the effectiveness of the program to the affordability can play a crucial role in selecting the right online tutoring platform for their children. They stand in a better position to assess the background of the tutors and testimonials of existing students – parents to take a decision regarding the ideal tutoring platform keeping the end objectives in mind.
Parents while selecting an online program, must look out for features like reviewing mechanisms, availability of recorded sessions on the platform and the proactive sharing of the structure of the course to be covered along with timelines. Revisiting recorded sessions are a great help when a child is revising work at night or at an off-hour and is stuck at a point, a recap provided at that time is most helpful and trust me is easily memorized as well.
Let us see another scenario, wherein you need to discontinue the course for some reason or are not finding optimum results and you are stuck as you would have paid a full term’s fee upfront!! The point in case here is that parents must keep in mind flexibility offered at the time of registering for a particular program such that it is non-obligatory and not binding for a long duration course or full-year only – this, in turn, could lead to unnecessary financial implications. Parents should be able to renew the program as and when required and for the required duration only.
Reinforcing a schedule
While flexibility is a key benefit of online tutoring concept, sticking to a timed regimen will not only reinforce the value of discipline and keeping to a time structure, but will also encourage children to be responsible to finish and submit the assessments or homework in time. Many a distraction that is present online and in the physical world can be avoided easily if parents help in simple but effective ways like helping students prioritize their to-do list, making a plan for the upcoming study session. Ensuring the phone is turned off during sessions, and using a browser extension to block websites that could be a potential for distraction and subsequent procrastination. After all, children will be children but parents role – modelling persistence affects children the most! Look out for my next blog to know about simple ways to apply parental supervision and allowing only age-appropriate website browsing for children and young adults.
Online classes are pretty stand alone in the sense these do not require special supervision and preparation on parents’ part to go and drop them for physical classes at a tutorial centre or leaving them in the presence of an outsider if it is home-based tuition. Suppose, you have heard of one tutor who is superb in what he/ she does and you believe only that tutor can give the right impetus needed for the child’s progress, however, time and distance is an issue – parents often have to even forego the opportunity of learning from really skilled tutors as they cannot have access to those tutors, travelling is an issue and the nearby coaching centre only has so much to offer. Keeping these challenges in mind online classes are especially a boon for working parents and can be pretty much attended to from the comfort and security of their own homes, however, the participation of parents is still required nonetheless. How?
Parents need to participate to understand the program, the time taken to cover a topic, homework submission and assessment timelines and the methodology used by the online tutor. Parents can, this way, easily keep a track of the progress made by the child, areas of improvement needed and the future course of action of the tutor. Parents know exactly the pain areas and where the student is lacking. They also are the best judge to know if team session is stimulating for the child or merely distraction. If one on one session will be able to provide more benefits - this way they can take an informed decision with regards to one on one coaching or group sessions. Of course, at Edugraff, this option is available and offered only after an assessment is duly taken of the child’s needs and after discussion with parents.
At Edugraff (www.edugraff.com) we encourage a virtual interaction with parents on fortnightly basis to ensure not only all of the above are achieved but also an active parent – tutor relationship is established to ensure child’s progress is always accomplished most effectively.
We believe motivation is key at any age. Young learners can only see one step at a time and it is only parents who have to show them the whole staircase with their direction and advice to keep things moving forward.
And we are here to help…
Editorial team – Edugraff