Many families engage the services of a tutor to assist in their children’s schooling. This is especially true for those who work long hours and feel physically and mentally drained by the time they get home.
A lot of moms, however, readily take on the responsibility of being their children’s own tutor. More than the money that they are bound to save, being tutor-mommy gives them the opportunity to shape their children’s study habits and train them to eventually learn on their own.
Proud tutor moms Patricia Cuyugan, Janice Lim and Trina Ortega share some great tips for helping kids with their studies.
1. Begin with the end in mind From the beginning, Janice and Trina knew that they wanted their kids to be independent learners. According to Trina, the benefits of being tutor-mommy far outweigh the “huge investment in time and patience.” She doubts that a hired tutor will have the same long-term goal, much less the commitment to pursue such a goal.
Similarly, Janice set the goal for her kids to study without much intervention from her. She just made sure that she was there to check their work and to help them think through any mistakes they have made.
This goal setting paid off for both moms, as their pre-teen and teenaged kids are now independent learners who require minimal or no supervision at all.
2. Set up a suitable learning environment Kids get easily distracted, especially when facing homework after a long day in school. If you can, find a space for studying in a quiet place in your home.
It doesn’t have to be a separate room dedicated to just studying. It should be, however, a place where the door can be closed so you will be free of household distractions such as a slamming door, a ringing telephone, or a barking dog.
Mommy Patricia turns off the TV and makes sure that no one else is in the room with her and her 7-year-old while they are studying. There’s really nothing like a television commercial to break one’s thinking momentum!
3. Establish a routine Children thrive in routine, as it helps them organize their day. Knowing what is expected of them keeps them calm and focused.
So, set a specific time for doing homework. For Janice’s two daughters, homework is done in the evening after an early dinner and when they are already showered and dressed for bed. They go to sleep right after they’re done with schoolwork, because they are already wearing their jammies!
Trina advises that if you can’t follow a specific study time because of a different dismissal schedule each day, then an expected sequence of events should be established instead.
Preferably, let your child rest a bit before tackling what needs to be done. A shower and a snack do the trick for Patricia’s son.
4. Create a “review theme” for the day Other than the daily homework, it is also important to work on your child’s specific academic skills. After all, we want our kids not to just comply with school requirements but to really learn as well.
Patricia does this by having a “review theme” for the day, which she and her child spend time on after homework is done. She assigns Monday for reading, Tuesday for spelling, Wednesday for math, Thursday for penmanship, and Friday for Filipino.
This ingenious way of tutoring your child will go a long way in preparing for the all-important exams at the end of each quarter. Instead of cramming, your child will have already chalked up a significant amount of reviewing and really understand the subject matter. Exam time will then be a breeze.