Why Tutor Elementary School Students?
Before diving into how to become a tutor for elementary school students, it is important to understand why tutors for this age are crucial. The fundamental purpose of elementary school is to develop the foundation of learning that will carry students throughout their entire academic and professional future. Ensuring that these young learners grasp these fundamental skills and concepts goes beyond just improving their grades; it instills them with a sense of confidence, equips them with valuable life skills, and transforms their attitudes toward education as a whole.
In many elementary school classrooms, overcrowding can impede learning, leading to reduced learning time, limited skill development, and a lack of focus. According to the National Center for Education Statistics' School Pulse Survey, only about 1 in 10 students benefit from high-dose tutoring, characterized by at least 30-minute sessions with trained educators three or more times per week. Enrolling elementary students in tutoring sessions ensures their comprehensive understanding of the critical skills and lessons presented in school. To delve deeper into the efficacy and advantages of online tutoring, you can explore our blog posts, "Benefits of Tutoring Elementary Students" and "Is Online Tutoring Effective?"
There are many compelling reasons to become an online tutor for elementary students. However, the path to becoming one may be overwhelming for those who don’t know where to begin. While there are a few fundamental steps to follow, it's important to remember that the journey is unique for each tutor.
1. Determine your Expertise.
Before setting up a platform or just immediately scheduling lessons, it is important to determine which subjects and grades you feel comfortable teaching at the elementary level. Refreshing your knowledge and learning any new methods of teaching will allow your students to grasp the information you are teaching them effectively. There are many platforms to refresh your memory on these fundamental concepts.
Khan Academy: Khan Academy offers a variety of educational lessons at many different levels. Subjects like math, English, science, history, and art are offered and can be a great memory refresher when teaching at the elementary level.
YouTube Educational Channels: YouTube has an extensive range of video lessons. Many channels are solely focused on elementary curriculum, making it a great resource for learning and refreshing your memory.
Educational Websites: Many educational websites provide lesson plans, worksheets, activities, and videos that can help you get an outline of what students at this level are learning.
Many other websites and programs can help you fully understand the subjects you will be teaching students, and using these resources is crucial in ensuring you are providing your students with the most beneficial tutoring sessions.
2. Choose an Online Platform.
In order to offer your tutoring services online, you need to choose a platform to connect yourself with students. There are many different websites and platforms to consider:
Tutoring Websites: Dedicated tutoring platforms connect tutors with students and handle the payments, scheduling, and communication. These websites can be beneficial for anyone first starting out because of their emphasis on connection. There is little work for the tutor to do in terms of finding people to tutor, so more time can be dedicated to improving your lesson plans.
Freelance platforms: There are many freelance platforms that allow you to offer your tutoring services independently and only serve as a platform to get your services out. You can create a profile, set your rates, and find clients independently. These platforms are encouraged for those wanting a place to publicize their business but still want the freedom to choose everything else.
Your Own Website or Social Media: If you want a platform to offer your services fully independently, creating your own website or social media page dedicated to online tutoring is the best way to do it. Creating a website or social media page is the most technical but offers the most freedom in delivering your services to clients.
There is no “best choice” when it comes to choosing an online platform. Your choice should reflect your personal needs, abilities, and preferences, as the best platform to use is unique to each tutor. Your platform can also change throughout your online tutoring journey. You may choose to work through a tutoring website when you begin tutoring online and create your own brand and platform as you gain more experience.
3. Plan Your Educational Program.
After choosing an online platform, the next step is to plan out your curriculum. It is important to ensure that what you plan to go over in your sessions aligns with the elementary school curriculum that they are teaching in the classroom. Become familiar with the different grade-level standards and make sure that your lessons cover the necessary topics and skills that your students are learning in school. For many students, online tutoring will consist of reiteration of the lessons they are learning at school. While there are children in tutoring lessons to increase their knowledge base and learn ahead of their grade level, many students are in need of services that will help them learn and understand what they are doing in class. Because of this, understanding the curriculum that is taught at each grade level is crucial. Depending on the grade and subjects your services will focus on, reviewing the sites in the first step of this article can assist you in developing engaging lessons that align with your curriculum.
4. Set Your Rates.
Similarly to choosing your platform, setting your rates is a unique process for every tutor. Your experience level, competition, and demand are some important factors to consider when deciding which rates are best for you. There are many different ways to set your rates, some including:
Hourly: The average hourly rates for online elementary-level tutors vary depending on experience. For entry-level tutors (0-2 years), most tutors charge between $15-$25 per hour. Intermediate-level tutors (2-5 years) charge roughly $20-$40 per hour. Advanced-level tutors with 5+ years of experience charge $30-$70, on average, for elementary school subjects. These rates, however, are not concrete and should simply be used as a guideline when setting your own rates.
By Session: Rather than setting hourly rates, some tutors may charge by the session. Depending on the duration of sessions, these rates will fluctuate. Still, a general guideline to determining these prices can be to use the average hourly rates by experience level found above.
Package Deals: Another way to charge for your services is to offer package deals. The packages you offer may depend on how many times per week your average client uses your services. Many companies who offer package deals do so at a discount while still providing single-session options at the typical hourly or session rates.
5. Market Your Services.
One of the most important factors in beginning online tutoring is gaining a client base. Marketing yourself is a crucial step in becoming an online tutor, and there are many different ways to complete this.
Social Media: Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter are some of the most common social media apps for creating a professional presence. Reaching potential clients can be done through posts, stories, direct messaging, etc. By creating a social media page dedicated to your tutoring, you can gain followers and create a brand for yourself.
Online Educational Communities: There are many online groups that connect parents of schoolchildren together. Promoting your tutoring service through these groups and communities can effectively build a client base.
Local Schools: Reaching out to local schools and asking them to include your tutoring services in their newsletters or websites can gain a vast and distinct audience. Many parents looking for online tutoring services may do so through their child’s school, and seeing your advertisement in newsletters can build your credibility when finding clients.
Online Advertising: If your goal is to reach a large audience, using paid advertising online can help your tutoring services gain a bigger client base. Paid online advertising can be done through search engines, such as Yahoo or Google, or social media platforms, such as Instagram and Facebook.
6. Prepare Teaching Materials
When it comes to your actual tutoring sessions, the materials you use to teach your students may vary depending on that child’s needs. Some children may be visual learners who need things drawn out for them, while others may learn better through trial and error. Either way, your teaching materials are crucial to ensuring your students can effectively understand the information and lessons you teach them. A few to consider are listed below.
Videos: Many sites, such as YouTube, offer video lessons on a variety of subjects for all educational levels. For complicated concepts, a child who learns best visually may benefit by having the concept first shown to them in an extremely visual video that draws out every part of the lesson. Videos should not be used in place of teaching a lesson. However, many students can benefit from watching an educational video in addition to a thorough explanation and other teaching materials.
Worksheets: Worksheets are one of the most common teaching materials used in classrooms and tutoring. You can create worksheets yourself or find a worksheet online to help children practice the skills they are being taught. Worksheets can be extremely beneficial to any student who learns best by practicing or testing themselves and can assist in the reinforcement of concepts.
Games: Both online games and games that can be played without electronics can help add enjoyment to the learning process for young children. Sitting in one spot and listening to someone explain concepts can be extremely tough for many students, and games are a helpful way to engage these children. Games also effectively reinforce concepts because of their interactive qualities and memory recall.
7. Create Lessons.
Each tutoring lesson should be tailored to the specific child’s needs. Different teaching materials, such as games, worksheets, and videos, as well as the schedule for the session, should depend on the child’s ability to focus, preferred teaching styles, and difficulty of the concept they are learning. It is important to remain supportive and patient during your lessons and encourage students to stay engaged.
8. Assess the Progress of Your Students.
Progress can look different in each child. Making sure you are paying attention to what each child knows and doesn’t know during sessions can be crucial to detecting signs of progress. For some students, progress may be that they were able to pay attention for a few minutes longer that day. For others, progress may show bigger signs, such as being able to write a full sentence when they couldn’t before. However a child shows progress, it is important to communicate these things with their parents or guardians. Hence, they are aware of their child’s educational development and can be there to support them.
9. Stay Up-To-Date on Learning Methods.
The final step in becoming an online tutor is to make sure you consistently familiarize yourself with new teaching methods that may be taught in your student’s classrooms. With math, especially, there can be numerous ways teachers might show their students to add two numbers together. By ensuring you understand how your students are being taught in school, you can assist them in understanding concepts in a way that they are familiar with.
Smith Learning Services Tutoring
Overall, tutoring is an important resource for children, especially at the fundamental level in elementary school. We invite you to explore our comprehensive online tutoring options at Smith Learning Services, LLC. We are committed to providing the best educational support to students of all ages and backgrounds. Whether your goal is to excel in school, prepare for standardized tests, or advance your understanding of a particular subject, our experienced and dedicated team of tutors is here to guide you on your learning journey. Our online services are designed to be convenient and flexible, allowing you to access personalized instructions from the comfort of your own home. We offer a diverse range of subjects for all ages and skill levels, and our team of qualified tutors is equipped to address your unique learning needs. Visit https://www.smithlearningservices.com/ to take the first step towards a brighter educational future with Smith Learning Services, LLC.