Homeschooling comes with many liberties, like the freedom for students to pursue their own interests regardless of what's being taught in school, and the ability to make your own schedule, taking days off as needed or finishing your schoolwork anytime between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m., depending on the day. But homeschooling comes with a lot of responsibility too, and sometimes it helps to distribute the load.
While homeschooling provides increased flexibility and broader learning options than a more traditional school experience, homeschooled students often have many of the same needs as their in-school counterparts, including the need for extra help from time to time. You may be used to taking care of your students’ educational needs and goals in-house, but there's nothing wrong with homeschool tutoring either. Here's what you should know.
When Should You Think About Homeschool Tutoring?
For some people, there's a stigma attached to finding a homeschool tutor. Sometimes, people think tutors are only for struggling learners or those who need extra help. This is not the case for anyone, and it's definitely not the case for homeschoolers who decide to seek homeschool tutoring services. There are many reasons homeschool families might look to hire a private tutor.
1. A Student Wants To Study Areas Beyond What’s Offered
Sometimes, a homeschool student might want to study something that is outside of a homeschool parent or other homeschool teacher's area of expertise. It isn't unusual for a homeschool family to decide to teach a foreign language in elementary school or computer coding in middle school.
If a homeschool student is learning something that exceeds the parent or other homeschool teacher's own experiences, homeschool tutoring can be a great choice.
Specialized curricula like foreign languages or computer programming are amazing subjects to learn, but they require a general base level of knowledge. If a parent or other teacher doesn't have the necessary knowledge to create their own lesson plans in this area, a homeschool tutor can make these topics more accessible.
2. Learning Styles or Personality Don't Align
There's a certain dynamic between parents and their children. While homeschooling can help you and your student build a strong relationship, it can also come with a certain amount of tension. Whether you're working on a tricky language arts concept or tackling some complex pre-algebra, sometimes it can help your child to hear input from an outside voice.
Sometimes, a child's specific learning style or the personality mix between parent and child can make learning harder than it needs to be. This might be particularly true in subject areas like reading or foundational math skills, as the content is higher stakes and requires mastery before your student can progress to higher levels.
If certain subject areas are bringing too much stress, bringing in a private homeschool tutor can be a great idea. This will take the pressure off the parent-child relationship and put the focus back on academics.
3. Homeschoolers Preparing for Public School or Standardized Tests
A homeschool student might also be a good fit for tutoring when they need to prepare for a specified level of knowledge. This might be the case when preparing to transfer to public schools or when preparing for a standardized test. Both of these scenarios require a specific skill set, and even bright, well-prepared students may need some extra help to get ready.
If a homeschool student is getting ready to transfer to public school, it's a great idea to use homeschool tutoring to help prepare for the transition. In this case, families might find a certified teacher or a master’s degree-level tutor with teaching experience who has the knowledge of necessary grade-level skills that a child needs to meet in the public school system.
Similarly, standardized tests require a highly specific set of skills and strategies. Tutors with a proven track record in this area are best suited to helping. Be sure to check how many years of experience a tutor has in the test prep area.
Where To Find Homeschool Tutoring
If you decide you need homeschool tutoring, it might be difficult to find someone with availability, budget, and expertise that suits your needs. Many homeschoolers work on a non-traditional school year schedule, furthering complicating the search.
Online tutoring can open the door for private tutoring in your own home without the hassle of finding a local in-person tutor who fits your needs. As online tutoring grows in popularity, so does the substantial base of online tutors available.
Companies such as TutorMe provide a broad base of experienced tutors available on demand. Our tutors are already screened, and results can be filtered by experience and expertise. With rates as low as $26/hr, tutors here will suit every need from special needs elementary education or 3rd-grade social studies to 6th-grade math or high school level study skills. You’ll be able to match with tutors from across the United States.
How Will Homeschool Tutoring Fit Your Schedule?
One of the many advantages of homeschooling is students can determine their own schedules. Whether you're hiring a private tutor to come to your home or you're choosing an online tutor, homeschooling generally allows for a more flexible tutor schedule.
That said, sometimes a family has many commitments, and the homeschool schedule comes with time restrictions. Perhaps reading needs to happen first thing in the morning while learning engagement is still fresh. Maybe you'd like to keep private tutoring in the afternoon hours but have home instruction in the morning. Whatever the case may be, homeschool tutoring can sometimes present scheduling challenges.
Other times, the tutor has their own scheduling constraints. While you might have the flexibility to schedule instructional hours in the morning, many tutors have other full-time jobs or tutoring clients they need to juggle.
This is another reason why online tutoring through services like TutorMe is a good fit. Through TutorMe, you can filter tutors in real-time, finding the help you need, when you need it.
Is Homeschool Tutoring Right for You?
There are many different reasons that a family might consider getting some help with homeschooling their kids. While many people think of tutors as a crutch reserved for struggling learners or special education, tutors are actually a great option for many families who don't have these same concerns.
Homeschool tutoring can provide learning experiences that go beyond a parent's level of expertise, they can ease the strain on a relationship when a parent's teaching style doesn't match a student's learning style, and they can help prepare students for specialized skills or specific content knowledge.
While finding the right tutor can be difficult, online tutoring provides more options and a broader base of tutors to choose from. Online tutoring platforms like TutorMe also relieve scheduling constraints for families who may be worried about the time commitment or scheduling impact of hiring a homeschool tutor. For homeschool families who want some extra support or outside help, homeschool tutoring is a great choice.