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Old 11-12-2008, 05:58 AM
 
13,247 posts, read 33,282,980 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by haggardhouseelf View Post
I have always done a lot of volunteer work in my kids classrooms over the years and have had lots of conversations with teachers and other parents regarding tutoring - private tutoring vs. sylvan/kumon type places vs. just working with your kids yourself. By far... teachers want parents to work with their own children more over any other kind of "store bought" tutoring. I am constantly hearing teacher's tell parents that "you are your child's best teacher". I hear them say that the sylvan type places are too expensive for what they are. I even heard this from one teacher who earned extra money by working at Sylvan in addition to his regular teaching job. He worked there, yet he didn't recommend sending your kids there unless you were also dealing with some kind of emotional or behavioral problems which might make it hard for you to work with your own child at home.

They sell the Kumon workbooks at most book stores. There are lots of good workbooks out there. Teachers also, if you ask them specifically, can show you things to do with your child.

Basically, it's just practice, practice, practice.... kids learn by doing... over and over until they get it. All it takes is your time and commitment. And it doesn't take long. Maybe 5 - 15 minutes a day depending on what it is. The important thing is to do it daily - same time for the same amount of time each day.

It's also helpful to know what sort of learner your child is. Once you figure out how they learn, you can find a method of teaching them that works best for them.
That works fine for young children and if you understand the material yourself but I haven't been able to help my kids in math for years and that's the one subject that they have all needed help in. Math in particular is hard to tutor because the schools often teach it differently. My husband is an engineer and loves math but all of our kids have complained that the way he has taught them was not the same as the way the teacher taught them and they would get points off if they didn't show it solved that way.
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Old 11-12-2008, 09:23 AM
 
Location: Chicagoland
5,749 posts, read 10,311,125 times
Reputation: 7009
Default Math Tutoring

I also found that just having a parent "tutor" their child worked best for us. It took less time (didn't have to drive to centers), less money, and allowed us to really focus on our child's specific needs.

There are some great homeschool math programs you can use to tutor your child. I like the Saxon Math and Singapore Math programs. I've used these materials for years and my children are now in the gifted math programs. You can also purchase the Instructor's Guides which provide a word-for-word teaching script. This really helped me since I was a little rusty in some math concepts. There are also some great workbooks you can find at teacher stores that are aligned to state and U.S. curriculum standards. Usbourne publishes a "Math Encyclopedia" that is an excellent reference. You can also purchase some Kumon workbooks but I believe they are only up to the 1st grade level (addition/subtraction). They'd really prefer if you spend the $ at their centers for the worksheets.

There are also good math websites (some require a membership fee for access to worksheets/tests). There are online classes for kids where they can progress at their own pace (there is an excellent online class through Northwestern University Chicago Center for Gifted). And there are good math DVDs/software you can check out from the library. I swear by the "Addition Rap/Multiplication Rock series" - I think this was the key to my kid's strong computation skills. My kids watched this on car trips (they were a captive audience) and also played some math games on their DS systems (e.g. "BrainAge"). We just try to squeeze in "lessons" wherever we can. My kids pretend they're annoyed but I often catch them humming "mutiplication rap" under their breath. They like it. And they like that I'm taking all this time to teach them rather than sending them to a center (they did not like the center when we tried it one summer).

BTW, if your child is using the "Chicago Math" series at school, you should have access to the "Math Extension" worksheets and the "HomeLinks" website for additional practice on some of these newer concepts that the parents never learned in school.

Best of Luck!

Last edited by GoCUBS1; 11-12-2008 at 09:39 AM..
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Old 11-12-2008, 10:00 AM
 
Location: Coastal Georgia
49,848 posts, read 63,010,443 times
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These are franchises which deal in group lessons. If your child needs individual attention for a chronic learning problem, they are not a good place. I can only speak about Sylvan, specifically.
My son has ADD and he fell behind in math. He required time and repetition to grasp algebra. Sylvan did not really help him much.
Basically we realized that we wanted to pay to fix a problem..sort of like taking a pill and being cured, but it's not that simple. Fortunately, my son was able to figure out some learning strategies on his own and made it through college math (he learned how to use one of those fancy calculators). Not that he understands algebra in the slightest, but they don't care as long as you get the right answer.
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Old 11-12-2008, 12:10 PM
 
Location: Papillion
2,589 posts, read 10,500,364 times
Reputation: 916
Quote:
Originally Posted by GoCUBS1 View Post
I also found that just having a parent "tutor" their child worked best for us. It took less time (didn't have to drive to centers), less money, and allowed us to really focus on our child's specific needs. !


Quote:
Originally Posted by gentlearts View Post
These are franchises which deal in group lessons. If your child needs individual attention for a chronic learning problem, they are not a good place. I can only speak about Sylvan, specifically. My son has ADD and he fell behind in math. He required time and repetition to grasp algebra. Sylvan did not really help him much. Basically we realized that we wanted to pay to fix a problem..sort of like taking a pill and being cured, but it's not that simple. Fortunately, my son was able to figure out some learning strategies on his own and made it through college math (he learned how to use one of those fancy calculators). Not that he understands algebra in the slightest, but they don't care as long as you get the right answer.


We taught our child a lot (I have a college degree and am a very successful professional and wife has two advance degrees - one education related and one medical related), we invested lots of time, but something still wasn't clicking. School assessments showed her just far enough into the "good" that their special programs wouldn't be made available. We supplemented with teachers as tutors. She held her own for awhile and because of the schools touting what some of these other posters have said we didn't go the Sylvan route until 5th grade. In 5th grade things were getting further behind (even with both parents and a teacher doing supplemental tutoring).

Out of desperation we went to Sylvan. Their assessment (no charge) showed much more holistically where her strengths and weaknesses were more than the schools had ever showed. Again, out of desperation we signed up for both Math and Reading Comprehension.

While it is a franchise once you are in the building everything is very small groups (3-4 students to a teacher), there were always "happy" teachers (they said they wanted to be there with kids that wanted to learn as opposed to their "day" job babysitting in the public school classroom), the specific goal oriented teaching, and the multiple methods of testing for retention of a concept - all just "clicked" with our daughter. We saw her improving at Sylvan when they did periodic reassessments, we saw grades going up at public school, and we saw a child becoming happy once again.

The only mistake we made was listening to the public school teachers and not doing it a year sooner.

Not sure if there is a difference between elementary and Jr Hi teachers, but it was the elementary teachers that were very anti-Sylvan... once the daughter was in Jr Hi (same district), the teachers became open to talking with the Sylvan Director so Sylvan could reinforce the concepts being taught in the classroom.

I went from a child basically flunking 5th grade (who had both parental and school support) to a Senior in high school that pulls a very solid B average and has been accepted to her college of choice. I give Sylvan a ton of the credit.

Last edited by Dave1215; 11-12-2008 at 12:19 PM..
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Old 11-12-2008, 01:31 PM
 
Location: Pennsylvania
5,725 posts, read 11,638,294 times
Reputation: 9828
Again, different approaches for different kids. There are many kids (like Dave1215's daughter) who really benefit from the franchise learning centers, but there are also kids for whom it would be a waste of resources because of the depth of their learning problem. And parent as tutor doesn't always work, especially as kids get older.

Much of the negativity people have towards Sylvan and other centers comes from two places - not all centers are run as well as others, and sometimes they take on kids with whom they are not successful, leaving a bad impression. But these things still don't mean they are inherently ineffective - every child's needs should be assessed on an individual basis.
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Old 11-12-2008, 02:07 PM
 
5,340 posts, read 13,895,312 times
Reputation: 1183
Quote:
Originally Posted by haggardhouseelf View Post
I have always done a lot of volunteer work in my kids classrooms over the years and have had lots of conversations with teachers and other parents regarding tutoring - private tutoring vs. sylvan/kumon type places vs. just working with your kids yourself. By far... teachers want parents to work with their own children more over any other kind of "store bought" tutoring. I am constantly hearing teacher's tell parents that "you are your child's best teacher". I hear them say that the sylvan type places are too expensive for what they are. I even heard this from one teacher who earned extra money by working at Sylvan in addition to his regular teaching job. He worked there, yet he didn't recommend sending your kids there unless you were also dealing with some kind of emotional or behavioral problems which might make it hard for you to work with your own child at home.

They sell the Kumon workbooks at most book stores. There are lots of good workbooks out there. Teachers also, if you ask them specifically, can show you things to do with your child.

Basically, it's just practice, practice, practice.... kids learn by doing... over and over until they get it. All it takes is your time and commitment. And it doesn't take long. Maybe 5 - 15 minutes a day depending on what it is. The important thing is to do it daily - same time for the same amount of time each day.

It's also helpful to know what sort of learner your child is. Once you figure out how they learn, you can find a method of teaching them that works best for them.

Thanks for your feedback. In our case, we've BEEN working with her on our own though - and it's still not getting through. There is also a resistance on her part because we are her parents, she responds better to someone else teaching this sort of thing to her. Luckily, our daughter's teacher has a child who is the same way, so she really understands.
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Old 11-12-2008, 02:20 PM
 
5,340 posts, read 13,895,312 times
Reputation: 1183
Quote:
Originally Posted by maf763 View Post
Again, different approaches for different kids. There are many kids (like Dave1215's daughter) who really benefit from the franchise learning centers, but there are also kids for whom it would be a waste of resources because of the depth of their learning problem. And parent as tutor doesn't always work, especially as kids get older.

Much of the negativity people have towards Sylvan and other centers comes from two places - not all centers are run as well as others, and sometimes they take on kids with whom they are not successful, leaving a bad impression. But these things still don't mean they are inherently ineffective - every child's needs should be assessed on an individual basis.

I guess that's true, quality can vary from center to center. Also, I think there is negativity because of the high price tag too.
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Old 11-12-2008, 05:08 PM
 
Location: So Ca
26,535 posts, read 26,304,655 times
Reputation: 24464
Quote:
Originally Posted by EEEPNJ View Post
There is also a resistance on her part because we are her parents, she responds better to someone else teaching this sort of thing to her.
That's the same problem we had. We were too emotionally involved with the result, so we just couldn't be objective with our son. The reason Kumon worked for him was that we WEREN'T involved. This was in math, though.

OTOH, with reading, what helped was his teacher suggesting that we require him to read aloud to us every night for a certain amount of time, his choice of books only. (We could still read to him but that was not supposed to be part of the required time.) The improvement in his reading in a matter of months was remarkable. He went on to become a voracious reader by the time he was in middle school.
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Old 05-24-2023, 04:22 PM
 
20 posts, read 15,718 times
Reputation: 14
We used Huntington for a few months. It is relatively expensive compared to other tutoring programs. The cost can vary depending on the location, program, and sessions. After a few months, we found it difficult to afford. After discussing with many parents, we consider to sign up for Beestar's GT math. It is an online math program that provides high-quality worksheets and it is cheap and effective. I think it is more suitable and convenient for my kids.
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Old 06-07-2023, 01:20 AM
 
20 posts, read 15,718 times
Reputation: 14
We used Huntington for a few months. It is relatively expensive compared to other tutoring programs. The cost can vary depending on the location, program, and sessions. After a few months, we found it difficult to afford. After discussing with many parents, we consider signing up for Beestar's GT math. It is an online math program that provides high-quality worksheets, and it is effective. I think it is more suitable and convenient for my kids.
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