As I write this in March of 2020, the major topic in the news and in our conversations in the Coronavirus. Life has changed dramatically for many of us as we stay home under the government’s orders to “Shelter in Place.” University professors are told that all their classes will be taught online for the rest of the school year. And, perhaps most surprising of all, toilet paper has become a horded treasure.
Families around the country are finding that they are homeschooling their children for the first time.
It has been a time of change for all of us. I have been tutoring high school and college students in math, science and numerous other topics in my home office for many years, but this week, as my students transitioned to online classes, I transitioned to online tutoring.
I have done some online tutoring in the past, but that service was usually reserved for students who had received tutoring from me in
This week, everything changed, and all the tutoring was done online with Skype and several other online tools, and I was pleasantly surprised to find how easy it was for me and my students to transition to this type of learning environment. It was a very successful experience for all of us.
HOW IT WORKS: For those of you who are considering Online Tutoring, here is how it works at Up and Over Educational Services.
Each student needs a laptop or desk top computer with audio and visual capabilities as well as a Skype account or a Zoom account. Currently I am using Skype with Zoom as a backup. Students call in at their scheduled tutoring time, and after a quick greeting and discussion of the day’s goals, I share my computer screen where I can pull up assignments on Gmail, and where I can use an online white board feature to write out math problems and chemical formulas.
All students provide copies of their assignments and textbooks ahead of time by either scanning (or taking photos of) the documents and emailing them to me or by providing an extra textbook. Additional documents can be shown using the “sharing” feature on Skype or Zoom.
For students who are doing upper level chemistry or math, having an extra web cam that points down to where the student is writing can be helpful but is not required.
For students who are studying English or History, the Google Docs program is used so that the tutor can see the writing process in real time and contribute verbal and written assistance.
Students who have slight colds and who were not permitted to come to tutoring can now receive their instruction in the comfort of their own homes (maybe even in the pajamas!) while the rest of the students – and their tutor – stay well.
The Corona Virus pandemic is changing how I tutor students, and I think it will change our society in many other ways, and perhaps for the better.
Schools are now requiring that students study and learn at home. With college students no longer on campus, will we find that online college education is just as valuable? All three of my kids finished their bachelor’s degrees through online programs at accredited public school universities, but at a much lower cost than the typical on-campus university experience. They all got a great education and graduated with no student debt. You can read more about it here:
Many families are now homeschooling who would have never considered that possibility before. Homeschooling was one of the greatest joys of my life. My children are grown adults now, but all attest that homeschooling changed our lives for the better. You build close relationships with the people you spend the most time with. Perhaps we will come out of the pandemic with a deeper appreciation and love for our families.
We are all experiencing a larger amount of free time now that we are not out and about as much. And perhaps what our society needed the most was a chance to rest. (and sleep more!) And even with the mandated “Shelter at Home,” I am finding that I can use this extra time and some online tools like Skype to stay connected to family and friends… and to my students too!
None of us know how long this pandemic will last nor do we know how long our children will be learning at home. Online tutoring is an important resource as we navigate these new educational waters. If you need some help, I would be happy to discuss the possibilities of online tutoring with you, so feel free to contact me at the email address below.
Stay safe and stay well!
All the best,