Guest Post: Private Tutoring – Falling Behind and Catching Up

This guest post is written by Kimberly Truong.

As a professional tutor, I have met parents who have asked me when they should give up and just hire a tutor. I always tell them, “Hiring a tutor is not giving up.” Knowing that you can’t help your child on your own and NOT seek out professional help, like a tutor is giving up. Not all tutors are the same, and all tutors have their own skills and specialization. I imagine your next question is, “What skills does a child who is falling behind need?”


Parents have come to me seeking a tutor for 3 main reasons:
1. Their child is falling behind and need to catch up
2. Their child is ahead of their class and they want their children to quickly advance
3. They want their child to have knowledge and skills that are not taught inside the classroom—ensuring they become a more well-rounded person.

Today, let’s just talk about hiring a tutor when your child is falling behind.


It is frustrating not knowing why your child is falling behind. Is the teacher being pressured to move too quickly through the material by the state? Are the other students in the class just moving at a faster pace than your child, so the teacher is speeding up for their sake? Or, is your child struggling because he or she isn’t comprehending the material for one reason or another? I have even worked with students who comprehend the material but just can’t remember it when test time comes. In cases like these, we need to take a different approach to learning the material.

Tutoring Teaching Three Kids


That is not a question that can be answered here—or anywhere on the internet for that matter. As mentioned, all students are different and learn in different ways. The only thing that I can say is that it takes collaboration between the teacher, the parent, and the tutor to get the help your child needs to succeed.


A professional tutor can be just as educated and experienced as your child’s teacher. He or she should have the same education to ensure your child really is getting the best you can offer.

1. A one-on-one tutor, however, works one-on-one with your child. If one way of learning doesn’t work, we find another. People learn in different ways, and unfortunately, in the classroom, time and resources limit the teacher to only offering one way—usually a one-sided lecture about the topic.

2. The tutor has time for your child’s questions and answers. Your child may need clarification on one topic. He or she may not need help in another topic—and listening to it over and over again is only a waste of their time. A one-on-one tutor also has time for all the questions your child has. The saying goes, “There are no stupid questions,” but that doesn’t mean some students wouldn’t be embarrassed to ask them.

3. Experienced tutors have worked with different types of students. They probably have had students with different learning disabilities, including comprehension and/or memory problems. This issue is encountered a lot. When explaining a concept step-by-step, the student usually understands. The problem is—they won’t remember it. We find a way. There are tutors who specialize in alternative ways of learning and it may take just that to help your child succeed.


Kimberley Truong is a private tutor serving Orange County, CA and surrounding areas. I have an English degree as well as my MBA and am currently working towards my certification to teach English as a Second Language.

I spend my free time volunteering for The Girl Scouts, helping young women explore and discover their strengths, build their confidence and grow to become strong successful women.

For more information about me, visit

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3 thoughts on “Guest Post: Private Tutoring – Falling Behind and Catching Up

  1. I definitely agree with the part that you mentioned that children may have lots of clarification with one topic that can’t be fully addressed in the classroom. My daughter has been complaining about her Math subjects recently and as someone who dreads numbers, I can’t help her at home. It might be better for us to explore tutoring options and see if she can have these lessons after school.

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