How Long Should My Child Be Tutored?
When parents decide to find a tutor for their child, one of the first questions they might be asked is, “How long do you want tutoring for?” But this question can surprise parents because they often don’t know how long tutoring *should* last.
But this question is important. It will shape parent and student expectations and the tutor’s actual teaching. My sessions are going to look way different if a kiddo will only be with for 2 months as opposed to 10 months.
I wish I had a magic wand and could tell you how many tutoring sessions your child will need. But if I did, I wouldn’t be writing this blog but making bank waving that wand! 😉
[click_to_tweet tweet=”Tutoring can last anywhere from a few weeks to a few years!” quote=”Tutoring can last anywhere from a few weeks to a few years!”]
The length of tutoring really revolves around what the tutoring is for. For students with very specific skill gaps or timelines, tutoring tends to last less than a school year and often just a few months. However, for students who are struggling across academic disciplines or who have significant skill and knowledge gaps, tutoring often lasts for multiple school years.
As a tutor, I don’t always know how long I will work with a student. Sometimes, I know in advance that the family only wants, say 3 months
Let’s talk about the most common scenarios and how long they tend to last. Keep in mind that these are rough estimates and your child’s situation may be different.
How Long Should My Child Be Tutored?
Short Term Tutoring
A student is preparing for a standardized exam such as an AP or IB exam, SAT or ACT, or TOEFL exam. (Wow, that was a lot of acronyms!) Usually this lasts anywhere from 2 weeks to 3 months.
Students receive study strategies and content for the particular exam they are preparing for. For example, I might review content for the AP World History exam, prepare a study plan, and teach strategies for taking the exam. Obviously, tutoring stops when students take the exam.
This is more common at the middle or high school level where students take a specific content course (ex – Chemistry or US History) for a semester or year. The student is struggling with the content or skills the course requires. Tutoring usually includes intensive content review and help preparing for tests and major projects. Typically, tutoring stops at the end of the school year.
Specific Academic Skill
Sometimes, students struggle with a single skill across academic classes, such as note-taking or test-taking. Tutoring focuses on teaching and strengthening that particular skill and showing the child how it applies in all academic courses. This often lasts a few months to an entire school year.
Long Term T
Executive Functioning problems
Th student struggles with executive function, including planning, organization, and assignment completion. Tutoring includes teaching the student how to plan, creating organization systems that work for the child, and helping organize time so the child can complete assignments. Executive functioning can take a long time to improve, so this tutoring usually lasts at least an entire school year, if not more.
Skill & Content Gaps
When students start tutoring, the tutor quickly realizes that the child has skills and content gaps. Somehow, they missed learning certain skills or course content along the way. Over time, those gaps add up and the child can no longer keep up with the class.
Tutoring consists of teaching those missing skills and/ or content and trying to help students stay current in the class. Depending on the size of the gaps, this tutoring can easily stretch beyond a school year.
Specialized Tutoring for Students with Disabilities
For students with a diagnosed learning disability, specialized tutors can work with students to learn how to compensate for the disability. As a child ages and course rigor increases, students often need to find new strategies to be successful. This type of tutoring varies widely depending on the child’s needs. You don’t grow out of a disability, so this tutoring can last for years.
As a parent, make a plan with your child’s tutor to assess your child’s needs and the extent of tutoring early on. Setting tutoring goals is a huge help in that process!
Psst – I would love to help your family! If your middle or high schooler
Let me know how it goes in the comments below!
Related Posts: What NOT to Say When Your Child is Failing, How to Know If Your Teen Needs a Tutor, Find the Right Tutor for your Child, What is Academic Coaching? And How It Can Help Your Child
1 thought on “How Long Should My Child Be Tutored?”
I found it interesting when you talked about long and short-term tutoring! The other day, I visited my sister, and we talked about her son’s last report card. My sister said she’s worried about his grades and wants to help him get back on track, so I’ll suggest she looks for a tutor’s guidance! Thanks for the tips on how tutoring focuses on your child’s specific learning needs!