Does my child need a Maths tutor?

There is a common misconception that it’s only children who struggle that need a Maths tutor. This is not the case. The real question is, would my child benefit from a tutor? The answer is an absolute yes.

Common problems preventing getting a Maths tutor.

Of course, there’s lots of factors that might make getting a maths tutor difficult in reality. Financial reasons, a lack of space to fit a tutor in your home, being unable to commit to a regular time slot with busy family schedules. The trick is to find a balance between the needs of your child and the barriers you have to being able to commit to a tutor. Or finding a happy alternative like the Pocket Private Tutor’s SATs revision app; it is quite literally a mobile maths tutor! See a demo here.

How does a maths tutor help?

Having a maths tutor means that learning is personalised. Your child is able to get an individual learning experience. In terms of the content they need to learn and also in terms of learning styles. A tutor can create lessons that your child actually needs and design the learning so that it suits the way your child learns best. They can adapt things so that lessons may be practical with resources or they may make it visual. Your child might need repetition which builds upon previous learning, a tutor can do this because they are just focusing on the needs of your child. A tutor can not only revisit learning and but also ask questions to move learning on quicker while building their confidence at the right pace.

Does my child need a maths tutor if they’re already OK at maths?

Being good at maths can be a problem too.

The likelihood is that less time is spent on helping your child in class if they are getting on just fine. In a busy and full class of 30, the needs of others may appear greater. However, that does not mean that your child’s progress cannot be accelerated to their actual potential, if they were to receive some additional help and focus.  Your child might also get bored or complacent without any challenge, and it’s challenges that are needed to build resilience, especially when coming to their GCSEs. It can be a shock for kids who have never faced difficulties when they suddenly face some higher up their educational lives. Facing challenges is an essential part of being a good mathematician.  A tutor would help them to learn new things and to present what they already know in more challenging ways. The Pocket Private Tutor’s SATs revision app has challenging questions for every area of the Year 6 National Curriculum so that your child can build a greater depth of knowledge.

In busy classrooms, there is a real danger that many mathematical topics are simply left off the curriculum. It can be really difficult for teachers to fit the whole Year 6 National Curriculum in to one school year, especially as the SATs are in May.  Often, priorities are made to teach content that suits the majority of the class and things are simply left uncovered. A tutor can ensure that your child covers everything from the curriculum that they are able and capable of.

Another problem I encounter frequently with children who are quite able with maths, is their mindset when it comes to difficult challenges and unfamiliar problems. It might be surprising to learn that often children who are naturally gifted at maths just don’t know how to respond when they meet with something that doesn’t make sense to them or seems difficult. It’s actually quite detrimental when children don’t face difficulties regularly. They don’t develop the essential skills of resilience, being able to persevere or have the motivation and patience to try a problem lots of different ways to get an answer. You may have heard the terms “mastery” and “greater depth“, which are quite popular in today’s teaching world. These refer to a child’s ability to show that they really understand a math topic when it is presented in a variety of different contexts, and often through complicated and confusing problems.

Does additional help have to be from a maths tutor?

No! Any type of  “one to one” focus is beneficial for a child. Many children came on leaps and bounds in lockdown with the “one to one” focus they got from their parents. But it really depends on there being someone around who has the time, who enjoys maths and is good at it themselves! They also need to know the appropriate methods. I have also encountered lots of children who have been helped out by their wonderful grandparents but with methods so vastly different now, there ended up being a bit of confusion and frustration for both the child and the grandparent. Although many people think it doesn’t matter what method is taught, it really does impact a child, when they are measured against the current methods used in school. Methods these days are also focused around building solid foundations in understanding rather than remembering a method with little understanding of why or how they are doing it.

What if you need a maths tutor but don’t have the time, space, or finances?

When I first began teaching Year 6, I was obsessed with helping my children progress and I welcomed working collaboratively with any pupil’s tutors. Those children, unsurprisingly progressed immensely. It was great but it also got me thinking about some common traits of groups of children who really struggled with their math skills. It is often the children who spend little time at home on their maths- not just in Year 6, but from the start of their school journey that have the biggest gaps in knowledge. Those gaps had just got bigger and bigger as the school years went on with no solid foundations to build new learning upon. There are lots of reasons why some children get less time being supported in maths at home. More and more parents have to go out and work and don’t have the time to help out with homework. If parents didn’t have a good experience of maths themselves at school, this is often passed down and there is a reluctance or inability to help out. For those parents who were unable to help themselves at home, tuition may just simply not be an option if they couldn’t afford the extra help or have the time and space to commit to regular weekly slots.

I wished that I could help everyone and pondered a lot about the unfairness of finances being a factor in getting that extra help. It was then that I created the Pocket Private Tutor’s SATs revision app. It is affordable, it covers everything in Year 6, the video tutorials are easy to follow, the appropriate methods are demonstrated and even better, your child can complete lessons at home whenever they like! It really is a Maths Tutor in your pocket!

The app works on phones or tablets but you can cast the lesson videos to your smart TV! See a demo here. It is just £9.99 a month or £79.99 for a years subscription. Many of the content from Year 6 overlaps into Year 7 so even if SATs is not a concern for you, the maths lessons are invaluable for supporting right through Key Stage 3 in secondary school.

If you are looking for an online Maths Tutor you can send me a message to inquire or if you would like to try a free trial of the Pocket Private Tutor’s SATs revision app you can download for ANDROID or IOS here and try before you buy!


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