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Admin/Paperwork for Home Tuition (Primary)

Discussion in 'Private tutors' started by juju, Oct 6, 2012.

  1. I was wondering what kind of paperwork you keep or give to your tutees/their parents, e.g. invoices, receipts, record of work etc.
    Also, do you use exercise books or individual workbooks or sheets or anything else?
    I'm thinking about setting up as a Primary tutor, and would be interested to see what works (or not), particularly in keeping effective records, for others.
    Thank you all!
  2. I was wondering what kind of paperwork you keep or give to your tutees/their parents, e.g. invoices, receipts, record of work etc.
    Also, do you use exercise books or individual workbooks or sheets or anything else?
    I'm thinking about setting up as a Primary tutor, and would be interested to see what works (or not), particularly in keeping effective records, for others.
    Thank you all!
  3. decj

    decj New commenter

    Quick reponse as planning lessons right now!
    After each lesson, I email the lesson plan and evaluation (i.e. how well the pupil did) to the parent.
    I give a receipt upon payment.
    Parent buys a book or loose leaf paper and A4 ring file for each child. Personally, I prefer pupil to have a ring file as I can take work home to mark more easily and it saves on the cost of buying glue sticks to stick all the work in. Prefer squared paper for maths, but it's not that important.
    I keep spreadsheets on ALL expenses, (make sure you claim for everything - it all adds up) fuel used and all income for HMRC purposes.
    Have a client list with all names, addresses, phone numbers (in case I get run over by a bus and husband needs to ring people!).
    Complete a 'student profile' for each pupil, listing interests/hobbies, NC levels, strengths/weaknesses etc.
    I make sure I tell the parents about the fact that I don't have a cancellation policy but appreciate as much notice as possible, ask whether they want me to give homework, tell them they have to stay on the premises (you're not a babysitter) and give them a business card.
    One thing I find works for me is that I have a labelled bag for each pupil (I have 9) within which is the file that I keep all their lesson plans in, resources etc, a pencil case (green and red pens, pencils, rubber, pencil sharpener, ruler etc) and stationery, receipts, reward stickers and anything else that child needs/uses so that I don't have to make sure I transfer stuff from one bag to another as that's how things get left out. Office looks like a bag shop!
    Can't think of anything else at the mo. Hope this helps. Good luck!

  4. Mathsteach2

    Mathsteach2 Established commenter

    Throughout my career I have not been a teacher to keep comprehensive records on students, and now in private tuition I still do not find the need. If I ever needed to know the personal background of a student in school, I would consult the school records. On the very rare occasions when I made any personal records of my own on a student, I would audio-tape them in the same way as a therapist does so after a consultation with their client.

    Working one-to-one in private tuition, I get to know my students quite well and am able to remember any personal details I learn about them. I write nothing down. The only notes I keep are the details of the work I am going to do with them in their session (about 3 to 4 lines handwritten in black ball-point pen on plain file paper), and after the session I write 3 or 4 lines in pencil on the same sheet, detailing how the session went and any notes for the next session. Occasionally I highlight a particular problem in red.

    That's it, taking about fifteen minutes of my time in total for each student for each session (each session may be a half, one or two hours, but this off-tutor time remains about the same). Primary children sometimes take longer because I need may need more activities during a session.

    I rarely write to parents (they do not ask me for it) but will telephone them if I have a red highlight in my notes.

    The most comprehensive record of the work done has always been, for me, their own exercise books which they keep for themselves and can therefore take home to show their parents. In one-to-one now, I find I do not use a board (black or white - or whatever) but sit by the side of my student and write directly into their book. This keeps their attention, especially if I am teaching a new topic, and they can carry my scribble (!) instead of having to make their own notes, which they can do in their own time if they want to.

    In private tuition I think we can safely say we only keep those records which are going to be of use to us or the student. We do not have SMT or Ofsted breathing down our necks.
  5. langteacher

    langteacher Occasional commenter

    Fully agree with Mathsteach!!
    I have a folder for each child. In the folder I have a notebook and any notes that I have printed /worksheet etc. I generally go over with the parent at the end of each lesson and show them what we have done. Parents are happy with this. All they want to know is are they doing well. I teach students, I do not tick boxes. If I feel it is helpful, I will email my slideshow to the parents or if they ask for it. I don't feel the need to keep records in the way of evaluations, if it has worked, I know it has worked and I know why, if it hasn't worked,I know it hasn't worked and again I know why. I don't need to write it down. Most of my records that are kept are financial ones, nothing to do with the teaching. I save all my slideshows in folders in my computer.
  6. spiderwomen

    spiderwomen New commenter

    I have a notepad with the lesson objectives written. It takes less than 5 minutes to prepare as the parents are expected to buy the main resources. The children also work in their exercise books, so as to keep a running record, and map their progress. I verbally feedback session details and have never been asked for any more than that. I probably wouldn't take on demanding parents, as I can't work miracles if the child's pace of learning is slow. Every tutor works differently and it's entirely up to you what paper work to keep. Tutors who feel the need to keep so many records are probably not strong tutors and hide behind paperwork. I'm paid to teach, not develop files.
  7. decj

    decj New commenter

    Your sweeping statement has upset me, spiderwomen and I hope it wasn't directed at me. I am an established and busy tutor with a waiting list and very satisfied parents. I choose to keep records as I work best in that way - it works for me. The OP asked what other people did and I replied in order to be of some help. I do not expect my approach to be criticised.
  8. Mathsteach2

    Mathsteach2 Established commenter

    I do not think spiderwomen was directly having a go at you, deci. I recently gave some advice in the SMT Forum and was immediately hounded for suggesting nonsense! Such is the nature of some posters here, they appear to want to use these forums for their own self-aggrandizement, but I do not think that is what spiderwomen was doing.

    As you quite rightly say, what you do works for you, and I have to say, what I do works for me. Private tuition is not class teaching in a state school, we are not bound by the required paperwork of Ofsted and SMT.

    However, you do class yourself as a "busy" private tutor. I trust your business is devoted to your students, and not to keeping records, which in my experience, turn out to be of no use to anyone and therefore worthless.

    As a retired teacher, I recently cleared our my loft, and could not believe the rubbish that I had saved!
  9. I do very similar things to the others on this topic. However, I write a few notes during the lesson, to say what a pupil can/can't do. Then when I look back say a month or a term later I can see exactly where I need to go. As I now have more than 8 pupils, it really helps, as I was finding that I was confusing pupils.

    Each pupil has a folder which contains simple plans (and by simple I mean simple - e.g. it may say just the word 'time') and basic notes on how they progress each lesson. I then can access all the resources I need during the lesson.

    I give each tutee receipt for payment at the end of a lesson and log it on my excel page.

    This may not work for others, but after 4 years of trying to keep everything organised I've found it's the best for me.
  10. spiderwomen

    spiderwomen New commenter

    I actually forgot to mention I'm a minimalist and hate keeping unnecessary paperwork. I keep it simple, and tutoring is just an additional job, not my main source of income. People on this forum shouldn't be so sensitive, and read into posts as personal attacks. It's just a bit of fun, and not to be taken so seriously.
  11. I've seen a few replies of yours lately where you seem to have been very very snippy with posters.

    I keep lesson plans and evaluation notes in my diary written in on the relevant day so I can track back what was covered on what session easily - any notes regarding payment above the norm (so if it was a "didn't have change so over paid - £x off next week's session" type situation - otherwise it's the case that the session was paid for at the end as normal if no note is made) and stuff to follow up. I can go through whatever I've covered with the parent in whatever depth they need by either looking up the notes in my diary, or pulling the relevant session's work out of my folder (I polypocket everything done/used in a particular session together - and keep the previous/next couple of session's worth of work for each child in one of those folders with compartments for each child - and then transfer it into a larger set of files at home). Payments go onto my spreadsheet when I get home.

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