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After-school tutoring is on a global rise. Not just in South Korea, which accounts for 15% of the overall statistics, but all over North America, Europe, and other nations like Australia. Especially in competitive markets, it has become almost a fad–albeit a panic-driven one.

Math, since time immemorial, has been one subject in which parents have consistently turned to tutors. Math formulas have evolved to become shorter or longer or school-specific. As a result, more and more parents have turned to math tutors. The question is, what is needed from math tutoring to foster a healthy learning experience?

1. Drills in the Basics

The individual-based teaching styles have taken over many schools’ approaches to math lessons. However, this has resulted in an oversight near-fatal to overall math grades: a lack of math foundations. Memorization of the multiplication tables is not structured mental torture: it is the basic building block to advancement in math.

If a child is falling behind in math lessons, the issue might be that his math foundations are not yet set. This is because the lessons moved too fast for him or because he simply had not yet had enough time to master the basics.

2. Discovery of the Child’s Math-learning Style

Some students learn well in the classroom-setting, and only need extra explaining of the lesson to fully grasp the concept. Other students have a hard time thinking about numbers as actual quantities, and need to see them as items laid out in front of them.

If the tutor can study and discover the student’s learning style, and teach him how to apply that style to understanding math, the student’s grades will automatically increase. The student will also stop being bored in math class, something that happens when the learning and teaching styles do not match perfectly.

3. Motivation of the Child to Learn Math

One of the greatest hindrances to excellence is self-doubt. They are scared of being wrong, they are scared to get low grades, they are scared every time they lift the pencil because they want every answer to be perfect. For some children, this results in a lack of motivation and ambition.

In this case, math tutoring is a gesture of support for the child. The child should know he is not studying with a tutor because he is falling behind, but because they know he can do it. This kind of confidence is what will eventually and ideally work the tutor out of a job. As the child regains self-confidence, his grades will recover on their own.

4. Math Tutoring: Not Just About Grades

These three goals of math tutoring consider the foundational problems that children may have with the subject. Instead of using math tutoring as a means to raising their children’s grades, placing more pressure on the children. In some cases, this may inhibit their children’s willingness to learn and do excellently. With these foundational goals in mind, grades will go up of their own accord, as tutors discover and help the children through their challenges.