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Sunday, October 12, 2014

What’s your advice?



What’s the one piece of advice you would give to a new tutor?  

Last week, one of the writing center tutors told me to write down every grammatical issue that comes up in a session when working with an ESL writer. Looking back, that’s what he would do differently as a new tutor. He’d write the issues down and figure out ways to handle each of the errors in future sessions. In fact, he said he’d figure out several ways to explain the grammatical rule, how students can notice the mistake in a sentence and various ways to explain the solution. Sometimes it takes several ways of explaining something to clarify it. I think this is a great idea and I’m betting that all you seasoned tutors out there each have a piece of advice that you could share. Is there something from your experience that you would do differently? Something you did that worked fabulously? Something you think made you (and can make us) a better tutor?

Even if you’re a newbie tutor, you could probably share a piece of advice that the rest of us could benefit from.

Here’s my advice…

I have observed that good tutors possess character traits such as approachability, friendliness and patience. In addition, good tutors also strive to be interesting, humorous, lively, cheerful, confident and straightforward with students. I know it’s a big list, but I think it’s a good one to work toward.

2 comments:

  1. John Ramirez11:47 AM

    Holly, I think that's great advice! I try to be as approachable and friendly as possible!
    Here's my advice: understand what the writer wants. Often, we are used to hearing grammar when we ask what they would like to work on. But grammar can be anything from punctuation to proofreading to something as complex as sentence rhythm. When working with a writer, I think it's important to be on the same page (no pun intended) and to have the same goals in mind.

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  2. John~ I also have found that the term "grammar" means different things to different people. Here we are talking about communication between the tutor and the writer again. It always comes back to that, doesn't it? John~ I also have found that the term "grammar" means different things to different people. Here we are talking about communication between the tutor and the writer again. It always comes back to that, doesn't it?

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