The shift to digital education is bringing about a paradigmatic shift in how teachers teach and students learn in India. In a virtual class, a teacher must apply all of his teaching skills to ensure that students remain engaged and interested. Online learning redefining distant or remote learning, as well as teaching from the comfort of our homes.
Virtual programs empower learners to discover their own academic paths and allow education to take place in class, at home, and anywhere in between.
Online tutoring jobs are quite different from teaching a class of students at school. A private online tutor must adapt and adopt new and effective strategies to aid learning, irrespective of the student's own level, and the subjects one is teaching.
Technology for an Effective Home Tutor Job
Many teachers with years of experience and a conventional bent of mind may view technology as invasive, making them averse to the idea of online tutoring from home. However, students need online guidance to supplement what they learn in school.
For those who have already decided to delve into the liberating world of online learning, be prepared to learn new technologies and skills. Dedicate an hour, every day, or a few days every month, to familiarize yourself and learn the technology at home.
Signing up for an online tutoring job will be a new experience, so be prepared to troubleshoot and let your students know you are working on it.
Once these technical skills are picked up, convey the information to your students as well. Give out clear instructions on where they should seek support in case they experience difficulty accessing an online resource. You can also provide them with a list of online communities for support.
Use Blended Private Tutoring Resources
The best online teachers provide their students with a combination of both traditional online learning styles with newer, more collaborative audio and visual tools. Working with a combination of tools will make your teaching content more immersive, thereby increasing student engagement. Be it college or school students, blended learning resources have enjoyed a fair amount of success to date.
Embrace the Mobility of e-Learning Resources
Technology has gone mobile. Why not use it to enhance a student's learning experience? Mobile learning can be an effective ally for online tutors as students are already used to the idea of accessing content on their mobile devices.
The advantages of mobile learning can be extremely helpful for learners who can:
- Access course materials that are regularly updated
- View relevant content anywhere, anytime
- Pace their learning as per their own capabilities, thanks to the small, manageable chunks of online learning resources
- Increase productivity and performance through regular self-assessments.
As online tutors, you can upload regular course content, such as video tutorials, worksheets, that can be easily accessed through a smartphone, laptop, or an iPad. Make a big impression with your innovative teaching methods by demonstrating your willingness to update your style of teaching with the changing times and technologies.
Keep Yourself Updated on Resources and Tutor Applications
No matter which subjects you may be teaching, language courses like English or computer science as an online tutor, it is imperative that your search and update yourself regularly on the available learning resources, modules, and activities.
Assist students who are having difficulty navigating course links or managing the material spanning across various web pages.
Online content and technologies are updated by the hour. Make sure your learners are not disengaged from updated content. Guide students on the right way of looking for and navigating to relevant websites. Demonstrate how to manage site navigation without losing track of all the resources they search for.
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Practice Cooperative Learning
Also called small-group learning, cooperative learning is an instructional strategy in which small groups of students work together on a common task. The teacher can provide small tasks, such as a multi-step math problem that students can solve together in a group.
One of the weaknesses of online and distance learning is that students have fewer opportunities to interact and collaborate.
Online learning provides an interactive platform for participants to engage with each other. Today's learning software is embedded with social features that provide a holistic learning opportunity. Some of these features include:
- Discussion forums
- Real-time communication, either one-on-one or in groups
- Search and share files
- Polls and surveys
- User groups
- Authoring and co-authoring own content, such as student blogs and wikis
These affiliate learning tools increase student agency and encourage them to think beyond the classroom syllabus. It also facilitates a forum for constructive feedback and collaborations that provide further opportunities for knowledge gathering and performance improvement.
Collaborative learning enables students to come together to work on real-world problems. This type of practical learning sees students working together as a team and can apply to students at every level of learning - from kindergarten and high school to college and university.
Exercise Differential Instruction
Every student learns differently. The learning style and level of capabilities differ for each student, depending on their socio-cultural background, life experience, and education. Students also come with their own set of preferences and innate skills.
As an online tutor, your job also includes understanding these variations in students in order for your tutoring to be effective and have a lasting impact year after year. This is where differentiated learning comes into play.
Recognizing the diversity of your students, involving them in group work, conducting formative assessments regularly, varying the difficulty level of lessons, are some of the teaching criteria for making differentiated instruction really effective.
Differentiated teaching entails the teaching of the same subject matter and imparting the same resources to students, but with variable instructional strategies.
For example, there can different levels of training for the same subject, such as English. The first one is designed for beginners, new to the subject, the second for those who are somewhat familiar, and a third for students who can be considered experts on the subject.
While the essential elements of the subject course remain unchanged, they can be presented in a variety of instructional ways, with the aid of different learning materials to address the student's level of understanding.
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Recognize the Power of Self-Paced Learning
Students may have their own limitations when it comes to online education. For example, they may only be able to devote a few hours every week, or even just a couple hours in a day every week to learn online.
There may be a host of factors contributing to such restrictions. A good tutor will make it her job to understand that learning happens at one's own pace, and not try to impose learning on a student.
Accommodating different learning speeds and needs by letting the learner control the speed of the course is the hallmark of an extraordinary tutor.
Self-paced learning can often contribute to better learning for the student. In an online learning class, students are an advantage as the tutor, on most occasions, facilitates self-paced studying. For example, a student can choose to go through the materials that the teachers provide and pick the most appropriate ones for your needs, disregarding the rest.
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Build Effective Rapport with Student
Online tutor jobs involve great rewards for tutors only if you are willing to invest the right of time and effort in each of your students. A great online tutor is defined by the relationship he/she shares with the students. This not only means that your students are able to retain what you taught three lessons ago but are also enthusiastic and engaged in your virtual class.
One of the most commons fears about digital learning is that the lack of face-to-face interaction will be detrimental to learners.
A tutor must be able to teach new skills and subjects to the students. This is the main job of a tutor. However, they must also build a working relationship with learners who are looking for a mentor to guide them.
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These requirements especially apply to tutors looking to help and support school students. With a little bit of initiative and the right intent, you can turn your work from home teaching job into an enriching and enlightening experience!
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Be Open to Experimentations
Tutoring jobs provide tutors with ample opportunities to experiment with their styles of teaching and create a new kind of pedagogy. These jobs remove the restrictions imposed by conventional teaching methods.
Not every teaching method will be useful and not every question you are looking to address as you teach will be answered. However, teachers will always try to provide the help that students search for when they search for online tutors.
The important thing for every teacher in online tutoring jobs is to keep looking for the best combination of tools and strategies. This will only be possible if you keep testing your theories in practice. Cooperative or differentiated learning? Which one works better? Live streaming or pre-recorded online tutorials? Which one appeals to students more?
There is only one way to find out...