Monday, 24 July 2017

Unreal Expectations from Students and failure of School Evaluation System, Importance of Home Tutor and my experiences

I am a tutor, working with Mera Home Tutor since 2013.In last 4 years, I have taught mathematics, science, physics and chemistry for Class 9 to 12. While working in Home tuition industry, I have experienced several aspects of education. I decided to share few of my experiences through Mera Home Tutor blog which may help students, parents and tutors. Here I am not going to share all of my experiences but will definitely share few.

Why all Students don’t top the Exam

There is a myth that each & every child can top the exam, if he or she does hard work and apply some innovative techniques or change his or her ways of studies. My experience suggests quite opposite to this and parents must understand this fact.
In last 4 years I have taught 100’s of students, some were very good in studies but some were very poor. I would like to mention here that many of hardworking students were not able to get good marks in exams. I was surprised by this that hardworking students are not able to score well in exam as I also always believed that hard work definitely earns good marks in exam.
So why a hardworking student is not getting good marks, this question puzzled me for long. I tried many ways, changed teaching methods but there was not a great improvement in the result of such students.
Over the period of time I learned that these students has the problem in understanding concepts, they were not able to grasp difficult concepts due to low IQ level , due to this fact their success was limited even after hard work.
Here I am trying to make a point that Intelligence play greater role in exam performance, I am not saying that hard work or teaching methods are not important, both are equally important but Intelligence has greater role to play as far as topping the exam is concerned.
There were some students who are spending less number of hours on studies but still getting good marks. Why?
Answer is simple, based on my experience they were intelligent enough to grasp difficult concepts in less time, therefore they required less number of hours of practice and it enable them to solve difficult questions in exam.
On the basis of this experience, I have piece of advice for parents that Our expectations must be real and we all must strive for better performance of students, not only exam but also in real life, so they must be in position to face real life challenge after schooling.

Importance of Home Tutor

As far as I see myself, I am a tutor cum coach. I have motivated several students to achieve good grades in exam and I have employed a customized method of teaching for particular students, as one should not apply a general method of teaching for all students. Each student has different ability to understand, & different ways to understand things.
Teacher can do miracle in the life of students, I mentioned above myself tutor cum coach, and so what is coach all about. Coach is someone who understands the student, uses tailor made methods of teaching and most importantly goes to understanding level of student & start teaching from there , that’s how student connect to the tutor. Therefore student start understanding things and consequently performance improved. From here, right motivation produces outstanding results and exponential change in performance.
I have come across several other teachers who were using single method of teaching on all students, therefore their success was limited.

Failure of School Evaluation System

In May this year, I came across of student who is studying at a school of repute (one of the best school in region). His parents got reference of mine from one of my previous student that I am a good teacher so they contacted me and I had a meeting with parents, they told me that student is outstanding, she is scoring like 98 Marks out 100 in mathematics, I was happy to know this as I will be teaching a very good students, as marks are  the reflection that student’ Intelligence and student is good in studies. Still I told the parents that I will judge the student within two or three classes & will give you a detailed feedback.
I arranged class for next day, within hour I concluded that student is not as good as marks, still I told myself that it will be too early to judge in first class, so let me take some more classes. After two or three class I was convinced that students is very poor in algebra but I am amazed by the fact that Student scored 98 Marks out of 100 in Mathematics and he does not understand basic concepts of algebra. I was wondering that how this is possible as basic algebra is taught from Class 6 to 8 in Schools and He passed these exams with distinction. 
I was puzzled and disturbed that a class 10 student does not know the algebra and he still got outstanding marks. First problem, I was facing that how to respond to parents as they will definitely ask about their child because my feedback will be going to contradict school marks.
I decided that it will be good to be straight forward that your child is not as good as marks because in India if student is getting like 98 Marks out 100 in Maths, first thing comes to parent’s mind is admission of their ward in IIT. Therefore it was necessary to tone down the expectations of parents otherwise six months later; they will blame me for the poor performance in competitive exams.
Well , first they did not believe me and start showing school’s answer sheets, I told them that I do not know that why she does not know algebra and still performing well in exam. Now it was very important for me to find the answer.
After week long brainstorming, I concluded that it seems that teacher in school was focusing on selected questions and student has mugged up those questions and he attempted & got almost full marks.
This is very disturbing for me as a teacher and parent that school evaluation system fail to identify that student is very poor in algebra; it is the failure of our schools, teacher at school and whole education system.
It shows that there is urgent need to change the system of evaluation of students, it is very important to identify the weaker areas of students at early stage of school education because at higher level education it become very difficult to improve the weaker areas.
So I have shared some of experiences as a tutor and I hope that it will be helpful for students, teachers and parents.

written by Abhi Bharadwaj

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