london parents

Could Cheap Tuition Be Harming Your Child's Education?

I hear it time and time again.

'Your prices are high'

'Tuition is too expensive!'

'I'm just looking for a cheap tutor'

Many parents seem to have a mindset that cheaper is better. But is that really the case?

Do you really think it's safe or wise to place your precious child into the hands of a person who you've hired solely because they're inexpensive?

Do you really believe that it's smart to trust a total stranger to teach your child if they're being underpaid?

Let's reverse roles for a second.

Imagine you're not a parent but instead you're a tutor who is trying to make a living by teaching their knowledge/expertise/wisdom to others. Someone contacts you by phone or email to ask whether you'd be available to teach their child. You say 'yes' and you travel to the parents home to teach. You arrive there and your told that your fees are too high and the parent begs you to charge a few pounds/dollars less. You say 'yes' because you don't want to seem rude or ill-mannered and you start the lesson.

Whilst you'd initially headed over to the house feeling excited about meeting new people, teaching a new student and making a difference. You now feel a little bit different. You feel glum and unmotivated. Naturally, you move from wanting to give your absolute all into teaching this new pupil to feeling far less motivated to teach at an optimal level. Rather than putting in 100% of your energy into the student, you're so bogged down by the fact that you're being underpaid that you put about 70% into the lesson.

Now, step out of the tutors shoes and be a parent again.

Has the 'cheap' parent in this case actually benefited from hiring a 'cheap tutor'?

Realistically, should such a parent expect any tutor (irregardless of experience) to put 100% of their efforts into teaching the student if they're being underpaid?

I'm always amazed that so many parents only think about private tuition from their own viewpoint and they never for one moment consider things from the perspective of the tutor.

The frank truth is that you get what you pay for and if you hire a cheap tutor one of these three things will indefinitely happen:

  • The tutor won't give your child 100% of their time and effort. Ultimately, they won't spend money buying, photocopying or printing education resources because they simply can't afford to. That means that your child will receive an inferior level of tuition.
  • They'll stick around for a brief period, will teach your child for a few weeks or months and then they'll leave.
  • Another parent who's willing to pay the tutor a higher fee will snap the tutor up and the tutor will gladly stop teaching your child.

Just think about how chaotic it would be for a tutor to stop teaching your child a few weeks before their big exam.

It's clear to see that basing your tutor selection on price alone causes havoc both on a long and short term basis.

If you're a smart and savvy parent who really cares about how well their child does, you won't pick a tutor because he/she is 'cheap' or because you can intimidate them into accepting a lower wage.

The moral is that you get what you pay for and quality tutors are not cheap. They're pricey for a reason.

Now I want to hear from you:

Parents, have you hired a cheap tutor? What was the outcome? Leave a comment below.

Tutors, have you been asked to teach for a cheaper fee? Again, leave a comment below and share your experience.

Compound Word List For 11+ Exams

If you've been looking for a compound word list to help your child prepare for their 11+ or SATs exams you're in the right place. I've created a brilliant one which includes 100 of the most popular compound words. Many of these words have appeared on 11+ Verbal Reasoning and English papers over the past few years so it's important for your child to familiarise themselves with the words.

Click here to download the compound word list.

If you'd like me to create more free 11+ resources, tell me what you'd like to see by leaving a comment below.


Christmas wishes,

The Tutoress

How To Motivate Your Child To Do Their Homework

Homework! teaching your child to read

It's one of those words that make most children shudder.

It also greatly affects busy parents who simply don't have the time to sit with their children and help them solve tough questions, equations and conundrums.

Whilst most children hate doing their homework, the fact remains that it is an essential part of their learning progression. Research shows that children who engage with their school or academic work on a daily basis significantly improve their grades.

So how do you motivate your child to do their homework?

Here are a few tips to help parents like yourself.

Schedule it.

It is so important to embed the mindset that homework is a daily activity (that should always be done) into the mind of your child. The more they become accustomed to doing work at an already scheduled time, the more likely they are to do it and they'll be more used to doing it. Growing up my parents for instance made it clear that homework was to be done for an hour after school every single week day. The only exceptions were the weekends or holiday periods when we'd be expected to do at least three hours of homework or studying per day. To motivate your child to do their homework, schedule a fixed time for them to complete it every single day. Stick to that time and get them into the habit of doing the work. For instance, 4pm-5pm could be 'homework hour.'

Give incentives.

Your child is human and like most humans they sometimes need a little incentive to motivate them to do things.

Whilst I'm not a fan of over-pampering children, bribing them or throwing incentives at them, I do however recommend giving them a good incentive for consistently great behaviour. For instance, you could set up a reward chart and whenever they complete 10 pieces of high-standard homework (without being told by you to do it), they receive a prize or gift. This method is brilliant for encouraging children to consistently work at a high standard. If they forget to do their homework or don't do it to a high standard then they simply don't move up the reward chart which means that they're one step further away from getting the incentive.

Be direct.

Communication is absolutely essential when it comes to handling children of all ages. It's therefore crucial that you make it clear to them that you have high expectations for them. For instance, let them know that they are expected to complete all of their homework and there are no excuses for missing it. The better you are at communicating with your child, the more likely you are to have a better relationship with them overall.

Are there any other homework tips that you'd like to share? If so, leave a comment below.

PS. If you'd love to have parenting and homeschooling tips that go straight to your inbox, subscribe to my free newsletter. Click here and simply enter your name and email to subscribe. (It's free!)

Private Tutors- Are They Worth It?

are tutors worth it
are tutors worth it

Do tutors make a difference? Are they worth the cost? Should you hire a tutor for your child?

These are just some of the questions that millions of parents ask themselves each year.

In today's guest post, written by Biljana Dimovska, we'll address some of these questions and concerns.

What is a private tutor?

Private tutors are teachers who are hired to help children individually with their school work. A tutor may help with math, English, or any school. If your child is currently dealing with difficulties regarding certain subjects in school, then consider looking into getting a private tutor. However, just like most parents, you are probably worried about your child's grades and if a tutor is really worth hiring. There can be both pros and cons of tutor hiring, and sometimes it is hard to be certain they are really doing their job right.

Are Tutors The Right Choice

The biggest question among parents is if a tutor can really help their children with their math, science, history, or any other  subject. The truth behind all of this is that math tutors for example, are very much worth hiring. If they are professional and helpful, they can really help your child. Their job is to make the child understand a certain subject much better. Teachers usually do not have the time to always help each individual child to learn well all that is required, so a tutor can help with the learning process. Some kids may need extensive help while another kid may need just a quick brush up to understand how to solve a certain math question. Professional tutors do their job well. When the child and the parents are cooperative, then success is the outcome.

First of all, tutors are usually just coaches and/or motivational speakers. They can help motivate your child to learn more, understand more, and get better grades. If your child has a teacher that does not focus on his or her education enough, then a tutor can help them feel more important in the schooling world. Sometimes, a young kid just needs a slight push from a teacher to help them learn with confidence. Tutors do more than just teaching; they can pave the way for a child to develop more skills that can help in the future education ambitions.

Benefits of private tutors

The main benefit is that private tutors can help adapt the teaching process to your child needs. If your kid needs to be taught in a specific way, a professional you hire can adjust the learning process to fit. You can also find math tutors and other teachers who can help your child with the subject they are mainly failing at. There are so many benefits, ranging from your child getting better grades at school to having your kid simply "get it" when they are learning. It is truly a wonderful way to help him learn and enjoy the teaching process along the way.

Hiring a professional tutor is simply the greatest favor you can do to your child if he's are just not succeeding at school. All tutors, including  math tutors do more than just teach; they can inspire. Finding the right tutor doesn't have to be hard. There are some online sources for professional tutors in your area of living and others that are in your child's school already. The only thing you have to do is read their references and maybe talk to other parents with similar issues and ask for recommendation. Your child will thank you later.

Biljana Dimovska
Biljana Dimovska

Biljana Dimovska is an online writer and a researcher investigating best steps a parent should be taking towards improving his or her child education. She has been researching the online sources of information for suitable professional tutor services worldwide and the quality of service they provide. You can find updates of her recently published work on her Google + profile.

The 11 Plus Exams Are Coming: 3 Signs You're Prepared

11 plus exam is my child ready? As an 11 plus exam tutor, I regularly see the the upside and the downside of the 11 plus frenzy.

  On the upside, there's the excitement of preparing for the exams, the curiosity of whether your child (or student) will pass and the   potential for a child's life to be changed when they obtain a place at their dream school.

However, there's a very big downside.

The endless worry of whether your child will obtain a place. The anguish of watching them go through one of the toughest learning  experiences of their life and the fear that they might not do as well as expected.

It's a roller coaster ride that doesn't end until your answers have been resolved.

At this time of year parents wonder whether their child is ready for the exams and this is usually the period where tutors like myself, receive the greatest level of enquiries.

My inbox is flooded with requests and my waiting list is jam packed.

It's that time when parents, teachers, tutors and students worry constantly about the exams.

So how do you know if your child is ready? 

There are three simple signs that shed light on how prepared your child is.

1. They know all of the VR types.

2. They know the exam entails- they know whether they're sitting the English, Maths, NVR and/or Verbal Reasoning paper.

3. They've done heaps of practice and are scoring at least 85% on average. Scoring less than this at this stage is a cause for concern in my opinion. If your child isn't hitting the 85% mark, it's a sign that they definitely need to do more practice.

For parents who are teaching their child themselves and aren't hiring a tutor, I strongly recommend buying/downloading as many of the 11 plus practice papers as possible.

If you're a parent who really wants to their child to succeed in the exams then I suggest signing up to the early access list for my 11+ success book. The book is a guide for parents who want to learn about what it really takes to get your child into a top school.

In the book, I spill the beans on all of my top tips, recommendations and advice which is all based on years of preparing students for the exams.

Click here to sign up to the early access list (just enter your name and email and click the 'sign up' button). Once the book is complete, I'll email you the link to download it for FREE.

If you'd like to ask a question about the 11+ exams, leave a comment below.

The Tutoress.