With so many options for tutoring nowadays, it can be hard to know where to start. With the effects of the pandemics on K-12 education, students need more help than ever. In this blog, we'll share the seven most important tips you need to get started with tutoring in 2021.
There are many basic decisions to make to begin tutoring. The first being "What subjects will I teach?" A good tutor must be comfortable and confident with every subject they teach. Each student is different, and just because an explanation works for one student, it doesn't mean it will work for the next. You must have a deep understanding of the subjects you tutor to be adaptable to each student.
If you have any certifications or degrees in a subject, that's an excellent place to start. Although you may be qualified to teach different topics, starting with your strongest subject is highly recommended. This will make lesson planning easier and propel you as an expert in that subject. Teaching your strengths will ultimately save you time and help you brush up on concepts, plan lessons, and build up your reputation.
Another critical decision is whether to start independently or work for a tutoring agency. Before you decide which route is best, it's important to weigh out the pros and cons. Starting independently can be more lucrative, but more workload. Starting through an agency reduces costs but also profits.
By working independently, you're responsible for nearly everything, from marketing to managing scheduling and so forth. For some people, this can make the idea of starting independently seem riskier than it is; luckily, there are tools to make these duties easier, like our platform here at Watton Tutoring! We help streamline all of the logistic aspects of running your service and ensure you keep 100% of your earnings; scouts honor!
If you prefer to give up a portion of the pay for someone else to run the business, that option is also viable. Just make sure to do your research on reputable and ethical agencies that treat their tutors and staff fairly.
One of the many benefits of tutoring is setting your schedule. While it's easy to think that free time easily converts to money, there are other considerations to take.
For one, it is crucial to set realistic time expectations. A good rule of thumb for getting started is that at least half an hour should be spent preparing for the session for every hour tutored. As you get more and more comfortable tutoring, the easier it'll be to allocate prep time.
Also, don't make the rookie mistake of overbooking yourself. Gradually increase your hours to make sure you can manage the workload and provide a healthy balance. It is worse to realize this after you are overextended, leading to burnout and compromised teaching quality. As you build up your hours, you will understand what works for you and what doesn't. Some tutors can tutor for six hours straight; others need a 10-minute break after every hour. Find what feels right! The benefit of gradually increasing your hours is finding what works for you without burning yourself out.
It may sound like a no-brainer, but it is essential to ensure your surroundings are appropriate for tutoring. Tutoring is a very intensive task, so you want to make sure you are in the right surroundings so that you and your students feel comfortable.
With that said, opt for a quiet and relaxing space, don't go for workspaces that are heavily trafficked or have distracting backgrounds, such as coffee shops or co-working spaces. Instead, choose a quiet setting that has virtually no distractions and comfortable seating. If you are tutoring remotely, make sure you have a reliable internet connection and a computer that can handle running video software, along with the other teaching tools you are using for your lesson.
Tutoring in 2021 has so many perks! Primarily because there are many online tools at your disposal to boost productivity and streamline efficiency. Using these tools efficiently add up over time, saving you multiple hours per week and thousands in your pocket. Here are some of our favorite tools to get started:
Watton Tutoring– https://getwatton.com
At Watton Tutoring, we're tutoring, simplified. We are a tutoring management software built by tutors for tutors. Designed with the input of several tutoring businesses, our software handles nearly all the logistics operations, including:
Watton is a free tool that can help you get started and grow your tutoring business – book a demo today.
SmartTutor - https://www.smarttutor.io/
SmartTutor is an excellent tool to organize and manage your marketing, advertising, and customer relations. A few features of SmartTutor include:
Several tutoring businesses have used SmartTutor to find new clients and grow their businesses. Check them out to learn more about how they can help you get started.
Quizlet - https://quizlet.com/
Quizlet is a learning platform with an array of products to support your students. Well-known for its digital flashcards, Quizlet can also customize a set to fit your student's curriculum or use another group that other educators created. There are several other helpful tutoring features, including practice problem sets plus more.
Mathcha – https://mathcha.io
Mathcha is a tool for math tutors to create clean notes and problem sets for students. Like any tool, there is a bit of a learning curve, but tutors can format equations and math notation with little effort and a bit of practice. Mathcha is such a helpful solution in comparison to other tools because all the standard math symbols are accessible. If you are a math tutor looking for a way to create clean worksheets for your students or show a step-by-step solution with remote learning, give this free tool a try.
Building a network and online presence is essential. Building a network is different from just finding new clients because connecting with other educators is also necessary. Other tutors and teachers can advise you on new teaching strategies and even recommend handling particular scenarios within your business. Remember, whatever problem you are facing, there is very likely someone else who has experienced it and is happy to help.
A great way to build your network is through social media. Many support groups are available on different social media platforms to help tutors get a leg up in the tutoring world. Whether on Facebook, Clubhouse, or Instagram, be sure to take some time to investigate the tutoring communities available to join.
Now that you have the groundwork done, it's time to find prospective students! There are so many ways to connect with students, to the point where it may be overwhelming. We briefly covered taking advantage of your network to meet new students, and that is always a great way to get started. At the same time, we understand that your network is not always enough to fill your availability. It can take time to build your reputation, and although word of mouth is a tutor's best friend, it's not the only way to connect with new students.
Many tutors opt for searching for students online, but that process can become overwhelming. How do you find leads? Or close a client? There are several ways to get your name out there, and they don't have to be daunting. Opt to promote yourself on social media, take advantage of client testimonials and build your community organically. Partnering with local schools in your area is also a great option. Several schools offer organized programs that can refer students to tutors and vice versa.
There are also several coaches helping tutors get started using tried and true methods. Adelle Southall, for example, is a veteran tutor with years of experience running a successful tutoring business who now coaches and spreads her knowledge to tutors and the community. Check out her YouTube channel to learn more.
You've made it! With all the necessary ingredients for success, you are ready to jumpstart your tutoring business. At Watton, we can help you get started with everything from choosing a niche and building your network to finding students and streamlining your business, whether remote or in-person. To get started, schedule a demo to make your tutoring journey a breeze.
Get started for free and find out what you can accomplish with the power of Watton.Book a Demo