How to be an Ace Home Tutor
Hey, you over there. Yes, you! Do you want to be the very best … tutor there ever was? Do you want all the aunties and uncles and other murubbis recommending you as the #1 choice for all the education-hungry students out there? Well then, today is your lucky day. Here are some top secret tips collected from all the industrial-grade tutors out there.
First things first: do not lie about what you can teach and what you cannot. Imagine your first day when the parent/guardian asks you to teach"photosynthesis" and the only photo you can think about is your Facebook profile picture. No, this stuff is not going to work. Trust is pretty important and lying about your credentials will honestly create a dent in the mind of the student about your calibre.
Try to maintain a balance between being friendly and being strict. This means that playing FIFA with your young grasshopper just before his exam is a definite no-no. Being over-friendly also means that he or she will put less concentration on studies while you are teaching, and their mind will continuously focus on when the "boring" lesson will come to an end. Show the student that you have complete authority: your words will have more value and daily lessons will get their fair share of attention. However, if you are a complete control-freak, your student will soon try his/her best to get you fired.
Do not be the mind-numbingly boring "master moshai" while teaching either. Provide interesting examples that your student can relate to. Try to put the entire concept of a chapter in a lovely package of dramatic humour. While this is not always possible, this technique makes sure that the student remembers their lessons for a very long time. Ask questions. Make them feel like there is a mystery that they themselves need to solve.
Positive reinforcements are vital. Whenever they do something great, a nice pat on the back or a candy will always work wonders. Young ones always love approval from their seniors and it pushes them to do better every day. Similarly, you also need to point out when they are going wrong, without going for extreme measures like "kaan dhore utth bosh". Here is an awesome tip: whenever they are being slobs, just tease them with age old taunts like "I hope you like being homeless."
No, do not ask for food. Definitely not on a regular basis. If they are serving it to you, that is terrific, but do not be a shameless vacuum cleaner.
Be very strict about your hours. Each session should last for a certain duration – no more, no less. Reluctant to teach longer may cause you to get fired soon, since some parents think that the student's grade is directly proportional to how long you teach them. If you teach for longer sessions than you are supposed to, do not be surprised when they keep on saying "leaving so soon?" every other day.
Be bold. Ask for the measly sum of money you are entitled to, right at the end of the month. It is better if you ask the student though; it's a chain of command: you ask the student for money and the student badgers his parents while the latter party never has to see you beg. This way the parents realise that you are not spineless and they respect that, keeping you in their priorities. If you think you have way too much self-respect to ask about payments, well wake up and prepare to smell the poverty headed your way.
Teaching is a work of art. Anything can happen in this competitive industry, so try to be at the top of your game. Survival of the fittest, my friend.
Jawad is your next-door superhero who needs you to get him his cape. Your curtain will work too. Shout at him on facebook.com/jawad.muhtasim or [email protected]