Do you have a gift for teaching others a new skill? Are you patient, a good listener, and able to adapt quickly to change? If so, then you might be perfectly suited to become a tutor. There is a growing need for tutors all over the country. 

What Does Tutoring Involve?

Our education system is struggling. Schools face frequent budget cuts, teacher shortages, and high enrollment, which often means that students don’t get the one-on-one attention they need to learn at their best. So, parents rely on tutors to fill the gap, from homeschooling their children full-time to helping with homework after school.

Last, tutors are also hired to help children with special needs. According to the National Center for Education Statistics, 14% of all students in the United States are considered “special needs” – a nearly 16% increase from just a decade ago, according to NPR.

The biggest rise in special needs kids comes from affluent families, who report increased cases of neurodevelopmental and mental health conditions including ADD, ADHD, autism, and learning disabilities.

Benefits & Drawbacks

One of the biggest benefits of being a tutor is that you can make an enormous difference in the life of a child. For example, test prep tutors help their students achieve higher scores, which can help them get into the colleges of their dreams. Grade-school-level tutors help build reading skills and turn struggling readers into lifelong passionate readers. Just like teachers, a great tutor can change someone’s life forever.        

Many kids have been struggling for months, or even years, in a subject before they receive tutoring. Others have trouble with particular concepts and feel ashamed when they have to ask “stupid” questions in school. Working with a tutor in a safe environment can deepen their understanding and help them overcome these challenges. This, in turn, can dramatically boost their
self-confidence and eliminate the stress they feel about learning.

However, while tutoring can be incredibly rewarding, it can also be challenging. You must have patience, as you’ll often need to explain a concept over and over, in different ways, to help students understand. You’ll also answer directly to parents, who might have unrealistic expectations for what you and their child can accomplish.

How to Become a Tutor

If you have patience and a talent for explaining challenging concepts to young minds, then tutoring might be a great way to earn a healthy side or full-time income.

Here’s how to get started.      

Step 1: Identify Which Type of Tutor You Want to Be

A tutor is a tutor, right? Not really. There are several different types of tutoring you can offer.

Acceleration

Remediation tutors help struggling students learn or practice a specific skill (such as reading) or subject (such as English or math) to help them catch up at school or meet the requirements set for their grade level.

Maintenance

Maintenance tutors help students who are already working at their grade level stay on track and meet their learning goals.        

Support

Support tutoring is a combination of remediation and maintenance tutoring. These tutors typically help with one specific area, such as reading or math,  while also teaching-learning and organization strategies to help the student continue to do well in other areas.

Test Prep

A test prep tutor helps students’ study for a specific test, such as the ACT, SAT, or GMAT. These tutors focus on testable material as well as teaching good study strategies, and they are especially helpful to students who experience test anxiety. Test prep tutors typically charge a higher hourly rate than other types of tutors.      

Enrichment

Enrichment tutors provide a deeper set of skills or knowledge to students who already have a foundation and interest in a specific area. For example, an enrichment tutor might teach high-level math skills to a gifted child who shows a talent for complex math. Or, an enrichment tutor might teach programming to a student interested in learning to code if their school doesn’t offer programming classes.         

Grade-Level and Subject-Specific Tutors

There are also tutors who specialize in specific grade levels. For example, Pre-K tutors help young children get ready for kindergarten, while elementary tutors help kids aged 6 to 10 cope with the increasing complexity of subjects and may also prepare them for standardized tests.    

Homework Helper

Some parents need a tutor simply to help with their children’s homework after school. This might be because parents don’t have time to do this themselves, aren’t confident in their teaching ability, or their child is in an AP-level class and parents don’t have enough knowledge or experience in the subject to help.      

Special Needs Tutors

Some tutors specialize in working with kids with special needs, such as those with ADHD, dyslexia, learning disabilities, speech or language issues, autism, or physical disabilities that make it difficult for them to attend school. Special needs tutors typically have a degree in special education or extensive experience working with special needs children.  

Online Tutors

Online tutoring has its benefits and drawbacks. One of the biggest benefits for tutors is that an online environment is frequently easier than tutoring one-on-one. The curriculum is often developed by someone else, and your job is to coach children through each lesson.        

That said, starting out as an online tutor can be a great way to hone your tutoring skills and build your credentials. Consider the following websites:           

Academic Coach

As you look into tutoring, you might come across the term “academic coach” or “learning coach.” On the surface, these may seem to be the same as tutoring, but in practice, these tutors focus on two distinct areas: building a specific set of skills or teaching a specific subject. Academic or learning coaches teach learning and study strategies, organization skills, and time management tactics to help students succeed in an academic environment.

Tutor Certification

  • Be a current NTA member
  • Complete the application form
  • Submit documentation proving you have at least 10 hours
    of tutoring experience
  • Complete a background check form and submit the
    required fees for this check
  • Submit the required fees for certification, which range
    from $25 to $55, depending on the type of certification you seek
  • Complete an approved NTA training class for the level of certification you’re seeking

You can apply to become a Certified Tutor through the NTA. To become certified, you must: You can get certified as a tutor on several different levels, depending on factors such as your level of education and the number of hours you’ve logged as a tutor. Certifications range from Basic Tutor all the way up to Master Tutor. The ACTP also offers certification options. As with the NTA, there are different requirements and prices for each level, ranging from Associate Tutor to Master Tutor.

Become a Tutor

To become a Tutor with Scholars First Academies, complete the contact information below and then proceed to the Volunteermatch link under the Registration Tab. Create an account, search Find Opportunity, Locate the Scholars First Academies opportunities and complete the information in its entirety to include the Background check information provided. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us by sending an email to: info@scholarsfirstacademies.org