This guide has been developed to help tutors who work with children and youth on homework and/or reading support. This guide provides various techniques and ideas for tutors to use to help their students strengthen reading skills and learning strategies which will also motivate the students to learn. It does not provide a set of prescribed lessons for tutors.
The first section in this guide, Getting started, will help you decide where to begin and how to keep your tutoring on track. Being an effective tutor starts with building a relationship based on trust and mutual respect. Without this relationship, no learning can take place, especially for an older child or youth who has struggled for years at school.
The tutoring techniques in the second section, Learning to read, will help a beginning reader learn how to read. Techniques such as phonics, sight words and the language experience approach will help your students learn the mechanics of reading.
The third section, Reading to learn, will help you tutor a child or youth who can read fairly well but who struggles to understand — or to think critically about — what he or she reads. These strategies will help your students to focus on understanding and interpreting what they read.
Although, tutoring a student one‐on‐one is ideal, it is not always possible. Whether you are working with one student, two students or a small group of students, it is important that you build a relationship with each of your students so that you can meet his or her individual learning needs.
We hope that you find these strategies and techniques useful in helping your students learn!
Additional resources for tutors
There are many factors that can impact how a student learns. You may encounter students who have learning disabilities, who have second language issues, or who are dealing with issues of abuse or violence. For these students in particular, you can play a key role in building their confidence and helping them learn.
In addition to this guide, there are a variety of resources that will help you to work with these students more effectively. To find these resources, talk with other tutors, visit your local library or search the web. Visit the Frontier College website at www.frontiercollege.ca for information about resources for tutors.