Parents with children in primary schools know that it’s kinda stressful nowadays. Maybe some of you don’t feel anything at all but I do. The first month of gor gor’s school, I got a list of dates on when he will be having his tests. Although it sounds less intimating compared to the word “exam” but nonetheless, a test is still a test where you go through the procedure of establishing or/and measuring your performance, your level of knowledge, your skills, your intelligence, etc.
As stressful as it may sounds, the role of the parents is to reduce the stress and not adding to it. We, as parents, need to tutor our own child on an ongoing basis, not when the tests/exams period is just around the corner.
What?!? Tutor my own child?!?
Ah ha…scary isn’t it?
What for?? My child has his/her own tutor.
I know you have hired a tutor but tutor won’t be available for you all the time, right?
How do I tutor my child when I don’t even know how to teach and/or what’s going on?
Don’t fret! You don’t need to be a teacher or an expert in order to teach your child.
For your information, a parent being a tutor to your child is to assist and guide them through their learning journey. If you rewind back the clock, who’s the one teaching your child to say the first word? Who’s the one teaching your child how to walk, to eat and to talk? It’s YOU! So, what makes you think that you can’t tutor your own child? You are their role model, therefore you are the best person to tutor him/her. On top of that, it increases your closeness between you and your child.
Alright, I’ll try. So how do I tutor my child?
Firstly, set a routine where you and your child can sit down together and focus on the work. Once it becomes a habit, you won’t have to worry about your child not doing it.
Secondly, you don’t really have to teach. All you need to do is to guide.
- Revise with them what they have learned in school.
The school teacher will teach what your child needs to learn. All you have to do is to ask your child what he/she learned in the school today and revise with them. Check out their textbooks, workbooks, exercise books. What have they done? Any mistakes? Revise!
- Show them how you find the solutions
There may be times where you don’t even know how to answer some of the questions. Don’t panic. You don’t have to show your macho side by pretending to know or hiding somewhere to find the answer. Just let them know that you don’t know. Do research and find the solution TOGETHER. There are times when we don’t know how to solve a problem and that’s ok. Just admit it and find the solutions. Finding solutions together also demonstrates your interest in learning. Thus, indirectly you are influencing them the love and interest of learning something new.
Thirdly, have mini breaks during the revision time. Taking short breaks allow one to maintain the alertness and focus. This also allows time for you to maintain your calmness and time for your child to absorb what he/she has just learned.
Lastly, praise your child. I don’t mean “Good job!” or “You are so smart/clever!”. What I mean is that you praise them for their effort on their hard work that they have put in in order to learn. Praising them in this way shows that you appreciate and they will put in more effort into studying. Even if you really need to criticize your child for not knowing something no matter how much you teach them, do start with a positive feedback before moving on to the negative so that he/she won’t get demoralized.
Being a parent-tutor doesn’t mean you have to know everything under the sun.
Being a parent-tutor doesn’t mean just for the sake of getting a distinction.
Being a parent-tutor is to enhance the bond between you and your child.
Being a parent-tutor is to model to them the love of learning and being motivated.
If you have more to add, do feel free to comment. Would love to have more feedbacks on how different parents tutor their own child.