What is online tuition?
Online tuition is live interactive tuition using video conferencing. It is effective, engaging and focussed. Online tuition is not prerecorded or passive learning.
How does online tuition work?
Through video conferencing software, Catherine quickly establishes a rapport with her students. The live video means that she and the student are able to talk and see each other throughout the session. Catherine also has a second camera that she is able to connect to the video to make her session interactive using manipulatives. The interactive whiteboard, which both Catherine and the student can write, type and draw on at the same time, is where the majority of the learning takes place. From writing and answering questions, drawing diagrams to explain understanding to playing an interactive game to consolidate a skill, the whiteboard is extremely versatile. Not only that, it is really fun and engaging!
The top 8 benefits of online tuition
Students are used to using computers for their school work. By using a simple whiteboard and video conferencing, students have a clear focal point for their concentration. I have successfully tutored students who have autism and ADHD as, when using a computer, they are more attentive.
Online tutoring encourages students to articulate clearly their thinking and understanding. It is only when students articulate their reasoning, that their thought processes become clear and, consequently, as a tutor, I gain an insight into their understanding and misconceptions and this is when true learning can begin to take place. With increased articulation, focussing on explanations, students make quicker progress.
Online tutoring can take place at any location. My tutees have continued to have their sessions while on holiday in Mauritius, from a hospital bed in London as well as from their homes. Parents do not need to spend time driving through busy traffic, dropping their child off and waiting. All that is needed, is for a laptop (or iPad) to be set up and a relaible internet connection. Children as young as 10 are able to connect to their session on their own.
Working with a computer is second nature for today's students. For highly anxious students, online tuition is less stressful so the student is more relaxed and at ease. This gives them the opportunity to show what they can do without the feeling of a person hovering over them. Anything written on the whiteboard can be erased immediately, meaning that students are more prepared to have a go.
All my resources are on my computer and I can bring up any topic within seconds. Frequently, students come with homework that is unrelated to the topic we are looking at. By having my resources close to hand, we are able to address these immediately without wasting any time. Images, videos and music can really enhance understanding and provide inspiration for creative writing.
There is something about online tutoring that makes it feel more fun! My students enjoy their sessions and are often surprised about how quickly the time passes. We play games, stand up and move around as well as use manipulatives, just as if we were face to face. My students write on paper and whatsapp their work to me, which I then share on screen. Frequently, I hear my younger students singing to themselves while working and ask to continue for longer!
Students have the opportunity to lead their learning. If they have a particular interest, they share their screen with me and find the relevant resources themselves. It provides a fantastic opportunity to use the Internet safely and effectively, under my guidance. Being able to discern reputable websites and information, how to use the information to make notes and mindmaps are all necessary skills in today's world.
The interactive whiteboard that I use in my online sessions is accessible to the students at any time. Parents are able to request a copy of the work covered at any time and this provides a good record. The whiteboard has clear explanations, example problems and working out, enabling the student to use it as a revision aid at a later stage. For home educated children, the whiteboard provides a clear link with their parents so that they are able to follow up the session with further work and support.