January 24

When Tutoring is not Enough


Transition is a fact of life.  In the world of education it is a rite of passage.  It's also the point where many students start to struggle. Parents often start considering tutoring at this point, but what if this doesn't help? What if you're like many of the parents and students I've seen that are frustrated because they feel like they've tried everything and it isn't working? What happens when tutoring is not enough?

Transitions in School

As a student starts school, they begin in the sheltering, nurturing early childhood stage (generally through second grade). Starting in 3rd grade students begin the transition into the older elementary stage where our learning is quantified and ranked by more external means (standardized testing), yet still with a degree of nurturing.  It’s at this point that students, parents, teachers and the system in general begin to feel more pressure.

Just as we all begin to understand the system of Elementary School, Middle School and adolescence begins to loom.  School becomes more demanding and self directed. More independence, organization and self discipline are required. 

This is the stage that many parents seem to dread the most and where students tend to start having difficulties. How do we help our students accomplish successful transitions in school during the busy lives we find ourselves living especially when interventions like tutoring aren't working?

Understanding Gap

Each phase of school requires a basis, a well-developed understanding of previously taught concepts as well as organization and self discipline.  In order to transition from one level to the next successfully, students must have key concepts and physical abilities in place so that the newly presented curriculum makes sense.  

If a student is still in the process of making sense of a concept and the class moves on to the next step, it creates an understanding level gap that eventually can build on itself and eventually becomes too great to cross.  

Frustration and even failure can set in, even in otherwise capable learners.

Red Flags and Potholes to Learning 

When I hear a student say, “I really just don’t like to read,” a huge red flag comes up for me.  “Not liking to read”  may be caused by lack of the previously mentioned physical stamina for learning issue.  Not liking to read is self-perpetuating. 

For example, a student might have a lack of vocabulary understanding from not reading rich and interesting literature and therefore, a vocabulary concept deficit develops not necessarily a reading difficulty.

A student may not be able to grasp the material presented because lack of vocabulary has created a comprehension pothole on their road to reading. It’s a vicious circle! 

Unfortunately, vocabulary drills or writing and memorizing definitions are not always pathways to better vocabulary!

Discovering the Missing Pieces

At Synap2it! Learning Center we are experts at discovering the missing pieces, training them, and setting students back on the path of success! We can understand and impact learning in ways that no amount of conventional tutoring can.

We would love to talk with you more about your child’s specific situation and help you come up with a plan to address the root causes of the struggles they’re having in school.

Whether it’s reading, math, writing, problem solving, or other academic concerns, we’re here to help! Contact us here to learn more and schedule a free consultation.


elementary school students, high school students, middle school students, Tutoring

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