Homeschooling has become more and more popular, in recent years and with that, so has tutoring services. Most popular is online tutoring websites such as My E-Tutor, an International tutoring service that caters to grades 4 – 12 mathematics and physics. Another such paid tutoring service website is The English Tutor.
For budgeting minded parents, there is also free online tutoring websites, such as Tutoroli. These online sites provide help when needed and parents are able to, in most cases, schedule around their timeframe.
Some parents however, prefer to have a tutor come into their home, where they can closely monitor their children’s progress, first hand. Some good sources of information on available home tutors would be local schools, school boards, homeschooling forums and even local parenting forums.
When Choosing any Tutoring Service
Whichever tutoring services parents choose to utilize for homeschooling, caution should be used, especially when using any “free” service. Since most free services are provided through a volunteer bases, they are ‘as is’ and should be scrutinized as such, however, these free tutoring services can be of great help to those who need it.
Interviewing a Tutor
With any tutoring service parents should research the tutors thoroughly, by comparing them against other such services, before beginning. Some key questions to ask would be:
- What is the age of the prospective tutor?
- What are the tutor’s academic qualifications?
- How long have they been tutoring?
- Who screens the tutor’s and what criteria process is used?
- Is there any recourse or official to speak with if a problem arises?
When choosing a tutor
It is important to match up the right tutor with the children as each tutor will have a different approach to tutoring and each child or student will respond differently as such. An aspect to remember, when choosing a tutor, is that most tutors are students themselves, and not actual teachers, so their style or approach to tutoring is influenced by their teachers and others within their academic circles.
There is another key point that can help when choosing a tutor. If a child is having particular trouble within a certain subject, parents may want to try and choose a tutor that is closer in age to that child.
This can have a positive effect, since the tutor can relate to the child’s age group better. If no such tutor is available, then choosing one that tutors the subject on a regular basis will help, as they will be more up to date on that subject.
Tutoring for homeschooling
Whichever type of tutoring a parent chooses to utilize for help in homeschooling their children, whether it is online or in home, screening the service and interviewing the prospective tutors is important to the child’s overall education and how well they will do.
Parents as well as the children must feel comfortable with the tutor; so that the help received is valuable and that it has a long term positive effect. The time spent with a tutor is hard to recover, if that tutor is not a good match, so interviewing and research on tutoring services is vital in a child’s home education and is well worth the effort.
Homeschool Graduation Traditions
For parents who are finishing up their homeschooling years, a graduation ceremony can be a rite of passage for the entire family. Planning a homeschool graduation can mean a lot more than sending out graduation invitations and praying for enough gifts to cover the rise in auto insurance premiums. Graduation traditions take on a new and deeper meaning for homeschooled teens who are often heading off to college with a far different perspective than their peers.
Homeschool Graduation Invitations
Graduation announcements for homeschoolers can be just as fun and festive as for teens in a traditional school setting. Announcements are usually postcard-sized notes with photos and basically state “We’re proud to announce that our student is graduating.” While these aren’t technically formal graduation invitations, parents may choose to use them as a low-cost invitation that conveys the student’s personality, or party theme.
Graduation Caps and Gowns
A homeschooler might consider renting a cap and gown for the sake of photography, or simply to feel official. Graduation tassels are often purchased through graduation diploma companies. Homeschooled graduates can choose their favorite colors, instead of arbitrary school colors, and customize their cap, gown and tassel however they wish. For a June graduation, begin shopping in January for the best bargains on graduation supplies.
Grad Night Parties for Homeschoolers
Some homeschooled teens are plugged into the local teen scene and have the desire and opportunity to carry on irresponsibly for one last night with their childhood friends. Others, however, deserve a rollicking good time even though the teen party scene might not float their boat. Consider a road trip, a barn dance a potluck, a weekend at the beach or a ski trip to help graduating homeschoolers honor the rite of passage with a memorable holiday.
When Grandma adds the tassel to the family’s collection, or when the diploma is hung in the hall next to Uncle Jim’s, it becomes clear that an era has passed. Whether families choose to celebrate graduation with a local support group, or independently, implementing traditional graduation rituals or turning them on their head can make a homeschool graduation personalized and memorable for everyone involved. Traditions can connect a child to past and future generations.
Graduations are meant to honor the child that has grown, the adult he is becoming and mark the start of an adult life. Many teens enjoy participating in graduation planning. Use the relationship and personality that has developed over the years to plan a personalized homeschool graduation that reflects carefully chosen traditions and honors the actual student as a growing adult. Order a diploma, then create new traditions or rituals to honor the unique experiences the graduate has enjoyed, as well as the future she has planned.