Finding the Perfect Primary School Tutor
Are you looking for Primary School Tuition for your child? Do you want to give your child the perfect head start in today’s demanding and competitive education system? Do you wish for your child to outperform all his/her peers in education right from the beginning?
For most parents, the answer is an empathetic YES.
Primary school is the first major step in your child’s education. This is where the learning truly begins. Without the proper fundamentals, your child may reach only a fraction of his/her immense potential in the future. Furthermore, your child is now in the competitive world of PSLE students where only the crème-de-la-crème get into the top secondary schools in Singapore.
Why is Primary School tutoring important?
Primary home tuition sets the correct mindset in place for your child. Tuition forces your child to take some time out from play to actually sit down and study. The two major examinations in primary school are the P4 streaming exercise, where students are divided into the EM1/EM2 or EM3 steam; and the P6 leaving examination (PSLE), which will determine the Secondary school that your child will be posted to. These are the two decisive exams in your child’s primary school education. A tutor is not absolutely necessary, but a tutor almost certainly will help you child to improve his/her grades and class ranking in school.
Almost all of us have been through primary school, secondary school, and then on to JCs or polytechnics. If you’d take a moment to reflect back on your own learning experiences — were all the teachers which taught you at school professional and adequate?
Why is it that, even though our children are attending primary school everyday and being taught by M.O.E. teachers, we still have to assist our children in their homework and in their understanding of the subject?
It may not be easy for young children when they first get uprooted from their friendly kindergartens and step foot into the formal classrooms that comprise our numerous primary schools today. It is a totally new experience to them (as it was to us!). Young kids might need some time to adapt to the environment and their surroundings. Some of them might feel overwhelmed and start wondering about other things instead of paying attention in class. The reality of primary schools are that they are preparing your child for the trials of life ahead. And as such, primary schools pit students against each other in a game called the Primary School Leaving Examinations.
Does tuition help?
Tutors were once students before and have gone through the same education system that your child is now going through (and that you, as parents, went through a long time ago). Good tutors are usually recent graduates or university students who have gone through the system not too long ago, and who have done well, and now understand what your child is facing.
Through their experience and expertise, tutors can identify with your child, and a good tutor will be able to find out what needs to be improved on and what study plan can best help your child. With the help of primary school home tuition, students get the individual attention required and this helps to bridge the gap between a child’s learning and a child’s understanding. A student is simply able to concentrate better during a one-to-one learning session as compared to rote learning in a class of 30 to 40 students.
Moreover, there are also children, who may not be able to cope with the pressures of performing well in the school. And although we know that this may not necessarily mean they will not be successful in life, the cards are stacked in favor of those who score at the top, and who graduated from name-brand schools. The Singapore education system is demanding right from the start. Tutors are there to help your child reach their fullest potential in education, to set the stage for their future accomplishments in career and life.
What makes a good Primary School Tutor / PSLE tutor?
- Good understanding of the Primary School syllabus
- Patience towards the student
- Good teaching plan and self-study plan for the student
- An ability to explains concepts during the lesson (and not simply ask the student to do readings or homework)
- Able to come up with Primary School learning methodologies (as opposed to Secondary or JC learning methodologies) so the student is able to understand the concepts.
- Ability to adjust the speed and content of learning according to the learning aptitude of the student. This is important; some “high performing” tutors can only teach high-ability students.
- Able to summarize and explain the core of each topic easily and comfortably to the student, this is because the lessons are only 1.5 to 2 hours a week.
- Not changing the tuition schedule, or cancel lessons, frequently.
- Communicates with the parents regularly to inform them of the student’s progress. This is crucial as parents are fundamental in assisting the tutor in monitoring the student’s work.
- From experience, we understand that an average primary tutor probably lacks about half of all the qualities listed above.
- Most student-tutors teach primarily to earn extra pocket money and are not entirely concerned with whether or not their student(s) actually improve. Also, parents need to dismiss the notion that MOE (or NIE trained) tutors are always the best tutors.
- The main difference between M.O.E. primary school teachers and primary school tutors is that M.O.E. primary school teachers are trained at NIE for 1 year. Would a one-year stint at NIE make a significant difference in the teaching aptitude of a teacher? — Possible, but unlikely.
One student commented to us that, when he was studying for his PSLE, he had an expensive tuition teacher with about 20 years of teaching at Hwa Chong Institution. However, the tutor was more concerned with making money and always stopped exactly at the exact time regardless of whether or not the student still had questions.
The student was not able to understand the tutor’s explanations as the tutor would skip a lot of the details, and would also get angry if the student asked too many questions. The student’s parents decided to stop the tuition and approached several tuition agencies for help in finding a tutor, eventually finding a suitable tutor with TutorPlus. The new tutor wasn’t a “super” tutor, he was just a recent ‘A’ level graduate who had obtained straight distinctions in the ‘A’ levels. Yet this tutor was patient and explained everything clearly until the student understood all the concepts.
The tutor was also willing to work past the tuition time in order to complete the lesson plan. The student was really appreciative of the tutor, and the new tutor was also cheaper than the Hwa Chong tutor.
We agree that an NIE certificate or an MOE teacher knows the syllabus well, but we disagree with the conception that MOE tutors are always the better tutor.
I would like to thank the tuition agency for referring to me a good tutor! Grace understands her tuition sessions and actually does her own homework these days. We also note the improvement in her results, especially for Maths and Science. We are hoping all goes well and she’s able to perform to her optimal level during the PSLE.
Mr Bernard Chua, parent of Primary 5 student
How Does Tutor+ Help?
Tutor+ specialises in assisting parents to find quality home tutors for their primary school attending children. Whether you child needs help with his/her school assignments or whether you simply want to give your child a head-start, you may find that we have just the tutor you require.
At Tutor+, our sole mission is to bring you the tutor that best helps your child’s grades.
Our values, corporate philosophy, and training, are geared to achieve this one purpose. Finding a right tutor is not a simple task. We put significant resources into finding and then screening the thousands of tutor applicants, separately interviewing them. Our responsibility and our promise to you is that we will find you the best possible teacher to assist your child academically.
Unlike other tuition agencies, we do not have thousands of tutors to choose from. Instead, after interviewing thousands of candidates, we have selected a core group of about 300 highly proficient tutors within our database. We separately conduct a face-to-face interview for each candidate. And we actually call some of the schools and references listed on their resumes to verify the authenticity of our candidate tutors’ credentials. We are a reputed Singapore tuition agency in the field of primary, secondary, and J.C. education and we bring the most effective and the most competent tutors to the table.
Our tutors are professional and competent. Some of the characteristics we assess when interviewing a potential tutor are:
Is the tutor able to teach students with practical illustrations, diagrams, drawings, etc? The ability to reach out to young children is crucial in strengthening the understanding of concepts, but helps the student attain confidence and interest in the subject matter.
Will the tutor be able to help your child learn ahead of the class? With the introduction of every new topic, the tutor should enable the child to grasp a fundamental understanding of the subject. You child should be prepared for the examinations, should be able to perform the homework, and should attain greater confidence in expounding the subject matter.
Can the tutor help academically weaker students progress at an improved pace? Our tutors are professional and sometimes allocate extra classes as necessary to complete teaching a particular chapter.
Will the tutor commit to your child’s education throughout the year? Our tutors are full-time tutors who understand that tutoring is important to the student, and that they fully commit to an assignment before undertake it. We monitor all tutors for positive feedback from the parents.
Is the tutor able to offer a degree of flexibility in the tuition schedule? Unlike a school setting, where class timings are fixed. Tutors should be amenable to change tuition schedules to suit their students where possible, a tutor may also have to come for more classes when exams are near.
Tutor+ is dedicated to providing quality tutors to all children from a young age. Our corporate mission is to help students build a strong academic foundation that will prepare students for the academic trials that lie ahead. Ultimately, we commit to assisting our students achieving mastery of the subjects, and to outperform their peers in the PSLE.
If you’d like to speak with us, register with us here. Or simply pick up the phone and call us.
A message from our Head of Primary Tutors Division
After graduation from NUS with a double degree in English and Economics, I taught at a local Primary School first and later gave primary tuition classes at several established tuition centres. Each of the tuition centres provided Primary School Tuition for various subjects and I was assigned to teach multiple subjects.
After being promoted to Head of Department (HOD) for Primary English and Primary Maths at one of the tuition centres, I was responsible for training the primary school tutors, organizing lesson schedules, and drafting Special Primary Maths Tuition & Primary Science Tuition programmes during the June and December school holidays. I also developed new course plans and practice exam papers, etc.
During interviews with potential tutors, many of the tutors do not seem to fully comprehend the current Primary School syllabus in the subject they wish to teach. Moreover, many also are unfamiliar with the common mistakes made by primary students. We also ask candidates to present their teaching methodology for both strong and weak students.
We have a rigorous and strict selection criteria in place. And we reject almost 3 out of every 4 applicants. Candidates who do fulfil the interview requirements are able to explain the examination questions thoroughly in a patient and orderly manner. We are highly committed to improving your child’s marks in the examinations. Generally, most primary students should improve by 10 to 20 marks after 3 to 6 months of tuition.