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year 8 maths first lesson - at the risk of sounding rubbish - any advice?

Discussion in 'Private tutors' started by MisterFlibble, Jan 22, 2012.

  1. I've always (and explained to the parents I'm doing it this way) worked WITH the child on a range of tasks from different areas, with a pad of paper beside me - and just told the child "I'm not marking things right or wrong, I'm just making a list of things that we can go over together that I can take away and start to plan what to do first from" - anything the kid comments on like "oh no not that type of problem - I can't do that" gets just noted down - even if it's just a confidence-building type issue and they can actually do it quite well.
    From what I've seen parents would get fairly antsy if they paid for you to just shove a test paper on the table for the first session - and even working with the child on a problem - you get to see where they're going wrong anyway... but I find going in light-touch on the first session is more sensible - the last thing I want is for the session time to roll around the following week, and for the "I don't wannas" to start and the parents to decide that it's not the right time/person/place and cancel - if you get what I mean. Getting through those first couple of weeks so it becomes routine seems to be half of the battle in reducing timewasters and drop-outs.
  2. thanks for your replies - you have put my mind at ease! I have looked on a lot of these in house tutor sites and they seem to plug the whole 'assessment (test)' thing for their first meeting, and I think this is where I got the idea that I should be doing this. I agree with all that has been said above - thanks again, feel much happier.

  3. emmathe37th

    emmathe37th New commenter

    I always do a mind map with my pupils the first time I meet them on the different types of topics in Maths. After giving them quick examples of the kinds of questions they might find from each topic, we circle the topics that they feel they need more help with. Then we decide together which ones to look at first and that forms the plan for the first few weeks (about 9 times out of 10 I end up doing times tables in the first week, and then division and fractions!)
    I let them know that the plan isn't set in stone, and if anything crops up in class that they find difficult, we can concentrate on that instead. Good luck!
  4. thanks emmathe37th - that's a useful idea, many thanks

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