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tutors in amman

“I have been a teacher and I have been a tutor, and I will always choose the latter”

Well it’s true! Although I have been tutoring for 7 years, I have worked as a full time teacher in a private school in Amman a while back. It may seem natural to a lot of people; that a person can be both a teacher and a tutor, right?

Not really!

I’m going to be frank here, not only have I enjoyed being a tutor more than a teacher, but I have also found out that I am better at doing my job as a tutor than doing it as a teacher. To me, teaching isn’t only about giving a class on numbers or atoms, it goes far beyond that. It is the way you explain it and the way your students react to receiving the information. That’s where all the magic happens!

I realized that focusing on one student, making sure that he grasps the information you’re giving him and watching his reaction when he finally gets it, is much more rewarding and exciting than having my eyes on the board in a class full of students the whole time. But do my students feel the same way about having a class with me as I do about giving them a class?

It’s quite uncommon to ask a student if they enjoy learning Math, right?

Well, that’s what I thought at first which is why I never got my hopes high. All I cared about then wasdelivering the information, you know, explain this and that, give a couple of examples, let them solve some questions and wrap up the lesson. As time passed; however, and after a couple of classes, I started noticing that some students are actually enjoying solving Math problems and are asking me to challenge them with even harder questions than the ones in the book. It appeared as if they didn’t only need a tutor to help them with Math problems, but they mostly needed someone to push them beyond their capabilities and make the experience a little more entertaining and challenging.

Students react better to having to solve problems if you make it sound like only they have the key to solving them, rather than solving boring questions that make no sense to them. To my surprise, it wasn’t long before many of my students started showing genuine interest in doing Mathematics; using logic and common sense when solving problems became one of the approaches that they mastered.

If someone asks me what moments I have enjoyed the most during my journey as tutor, I would say it’s when I get those phone calls from my students after they finish a big exam that we’ve been preparing for over 6 months, and I hear that tone of relief in their voices. What’s even better than that is the feeling I get when I receive those phone calls from them a month later with their voices shaking, loud sounds and music all around them, then they tell me: “Miss, I just wanted to let you know of my score, I don’t think I could have done it without you, thank you!”. Of course I always tell them that it’s their efforts not mine and that they should be very proud of what they’ve been able to achieve, but hey, there is absolutely no harm in taking pride in the fact that you have helped them get there and achieve their goal! I will always celebrate those little achievements as if they were mine, because they are. Nothing will ever beat that feeling.

 

Written by Areen G. – Grandmaster @instatoot

What Makes a Great Tutor?

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Let’s all be honest for a minute; we’ve all had our moments of doubt before tutoring a student. Be it lack of confidence or lack of preparation, this happens more often than not, even to the best tutors or classroom teachers out there. And in most cases, it’s just our minds playing tricks on us. So this got me thinking, what really makes a great tutor?

There are quite a few amazing ones out there. Those who show up on time, those who graduated top of their class, and those who are really good and do not charge much (parents’ favorites). The list is endless, and is quite frankly subjective.

I have been tutoring for a few years now, which has exposed me to different situations and has given me the chance to meet all types of students and parents. Most of the time, I get to teach courses that I know like the back of my hand, but every now and then, I find myself in a situation where I need to work really hard to deliver a concept to a student. You see, I realized that all classroom teachers and tutors face challenges that make them either doubt themselves or inspire them to work really hard and overcome those problems.

Great tutors are the ones who are willing to commit themselves entirely to that one student in that hour or two. Preparing for a lesson, tailoring that lesson to the student’s needs and the way he/she perceives concepts, and trying to make the subject interesting, if not enjoyable, is what really matters. Those who are willing to go home and think of solutions for problems they come across while tutoring are in my opinion the greatest of all tutors.

For many parents, great tutors are the ones who graduated from well-known universities with the highest scores. As for students, they tend to love tutors they get along with, who are flexible and friendly, and know how to deliver a message in a way they understand and can relate to. For me; however, great tutors are the ones who help students learn and grow, not the ones who teach them facts. I read somewhere that the difference between a teacher and a tutor is that teachers must get a class from point A to point B. Unfortunately, you’ll always find some students who lag behind while others pick up concepts and new information quickly and easily. A tutor; however, teaches at the pace of the student, ensuring that he/she is learning effectively while motivating him along the way.

Great tutors understand that students probably lack confidence in the subject they need help with, because of that, they must be able to clearly communicate concepts in the simplest of ways. Great tutors are also passionate about the subjects they teach. Their enthusiasm for the subject can easily inspire students and rub off on them.

Being a tutor is a great responsibility, but it can also be an incredible, rewarding experience if one has passion, dedication, and empathy towards students.

But hey, that could be just me.

What do you think makes a great tutor?

Written by Dania Mousa — Co-founder & CMO @instatoot

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Five Tips to Get You Ready for the New School Year

Well, it’s official. The new school year has begun!

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Summer break was fun. You traveled, you spent time at home watching movies or doing nothing (never a bad idea) or you just hung out with friends and family, unless you wanted to get a head start and prepared for the next school year (we like you, student).

Needless to say, after several months of relaxing and not thinking about school, returning can be a bit challenging. All the rushed, early mornings, the overwhelming amount of handouts and homework, and all the activities can be easily eased into if planned right.

Here are a few tips from us to make going back to school a little less intimidating and a lot more doable!

1. Adjust bedtimes and wakeup times a few days before the first day of school. This can be gradually done a week or two ahead. If your meal times changed over the summer, consider adjusting those as well to make them suitable with the new sleeping schedule. For example, if you’re a late sleeper, set your alarm earlier and earlier everyday, closer to the hour you usually wake up in for school.

2. Get organized in advance. There are countless things that need to be done before the start of the new school year, from buying stationary, books and uniforms to planning for lunch and snacks. Nothing calms down that new school year chaos like planning and avoiding doing everything last minute. Shop early to have your uniform and school supplies ready beforehand, and benefit from all the back-to-school discounts out there (hint: malls).

3. Organize your study space and supplies. Time to declutter that desk to make sure you or your child have a quiet, distraction-free space to study. Older students could benefit from these apps that help them organize their study and homework schedule.

4. Prepare yourself mentally for the new year. Setting study goals and routines will make the first few days of school a lot easier and more manageable. Find out what you’re going to be studying next year and plan for it so you’ll get a sense of what your after-school time is going to be like. You don’t have to work ahead and study if you don’t feel like it, a simple review of what you’ll be covering should be enough to help you ease into the new school year.

5. Focus on your weaknesses. Getting a head start on that one subject you need help with the most is never a bad idea. If you’re doing your SATs, external IGCSE or IB exams or any other official examination this year, start your test-prep early and try to get your hands on the syllabus.
If you’re feeling anxious about a particular subject, go for summer tutoring, it doesn’t have to be intensive and overwhelming, just go for a few lessons every month to keep your skills and knowledge fresh, and help you hit the ground running when the school year begins again!

Let us know if that was helpful by leaving a comment!