Life long sharing . . .

Tuition ? No Tuition ?

Posted on: April 30, 2013

As there are a lot of conflicts and happenings in my girls’ school, for the compulsory extra tuition imposed by the school,  couldn’t help but to dig out this book, which is written by a renown Taiwan educator, 牧语轩.

tuition

In this book, she is not just sharing about her view in Taiwan new education system, explaining what the new system is trying to achieve, what is the impact and also  giving advice to Taiwan parents on how to help their children benefit from this system. She also shared her own experience bringing up her two children (a daughter and a son). Both her children grow up to be a fine and knowledgeable adults, doing well in their studies. And there are also chapters where she shared some tips on tackling each subjects (she has been teaching in secondary school for 27 years)

Now, for the topic of extra tuition, no tuition, day care, I like the below explanation and guideline that she shared:

tuition1

Tuition is effective when:
1. The way the tuition teacher teaches, the child can understand/comprehend.
[Agree, sometimes, different teaching method or explanation suit different children]

2. The child learns it once during tuition, and listens to the teacher teaching in school one more time, which is equivalent to ‘revision’. For those children with good enough foundation and who pay attention in class, this helps to  get good result in exam.

3. The tuition class helps to highlight those important point for exam, and teaches the exam skill, spot exam questions. During examination, those who sit in such tuition class and being hardworking, they might find the exam question very familiar and therefore easy for them to score. But if the tuition class didn’t spot the questions correctly, they are not able to score. Majority of the children taking tuition, their strength is not growing, and their interest in studies in deteriorating.  Where does the problem lie in ?
[Ya, it’s valid also especially for those big exam like UPSR. Tuition can help the children to target for the examination.]

tuition2

(Yes, there are children whose result improves after tuition, but there are more whose result didn’t improve or get worse after taking tuition.)

Tuition is NOT effective when

1. Tuition class focus on teaching a subject or topic more in depth, sometimes harder than what is covered in school. Those who don’t even have the foundation, will not be able to digest what is taught and not able to cope. Therefore, tuition didn’t help to improve their result.

2. Some children might feel their tuition teacher is better than school teacher, and might not pay attention in school, developing bad attitude in learning in school, such as being ignorant to teacher and disturb the class in school. This kind of learning attitude won’t help in improving their studies.

3. Tuition works for one subject doesn’t mean all subjects have to take tuition to make it works.

A child’s freedom, own free time, and also body strength is limited. Human beings need time to think, to rest. When taking tuition, the child reach home late. And in the limited time left, the child still need to complete his/her school homework, and need to prepare for the next day school work… there is really not enough time for them. Those children who don’t bother about their studies, go to bed early being exhausted after the day long tuition class; those who care and responsible, sometimes need to study until late night, and the next morning go to school being tired. This cycle repeats every day. At the end, even those who have the will and want to do well in their studies, will be too exhausted physically and mentally to cope The tuition class won’t be able to deliver the intended result.

Another reason is some even attend tuition class just because the parents want them to. The children do not attend willingly. This kind of tuition only help to ‘sustain’ but not to ‘improve’ their studies. Sometimes, it might even make it worse.

tuition3

ONLY go for tuition when needed
Whether to take tuition or not, as a parent, we need to put in serious consideration. It involves not just money, but also time, and the children health. How we make the decision demonstrates what is the parents attitude and principal towards life, and children learn from us.

The author thinks that the below scenarios are only when a tuition should be considered:
1. The child doesn’t understand what the teacher taught in school, no matter how hard the child have tried to pick up by him/herself.

2. The parents are not there for the children at home. The child is left home alone without any adults to coach and watch over them. The children are easily tempted to get addicted in computer/online games. Then joining a tuition class might help. If can take up ‘self-study’ in tuition class, better still.

Another point the author shared,when a child fails all subjects, normally tuition won’t be able to help a lot. If the child has the will and wants to go for tuition to help him/herself, two advice the author gives:

1. Go for small classroom size, best below 12 person a class, then only the child can get personal attention and coaching.

2. Don’t go for too many subjects at one time, the most is two. Let the child focus on the two, then only can make progress, and slowly build confidence from there.

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