How to Tell if Your Child Needs a PBL Tutor

How to tell if you child need a PBL tutor?

two women sitting on brown floor inside white room beside glass windows pointing upwards photo

Photo by Mimi Thian on Unsplash

Every learner is unique in how they absorb, retain and apply information. It goes far beyond if your child is a tactile-kinesthetic or a visual learner — some students deeply desire to see their learning in action. Project- or problem-based learning (PBL) is for children who want to make a difference or see their responses impact real-time projects. Curious, attentive minds might need a PBL tutor to realize their potential fully.

What ss a PBL tutor?

A PBL tutor follows the PBL teaching framework. It directs learning based on finding an answer to a genuine problem. PBL tutors will ask their students — alone or in groups — insights and use their suggestions to guide the lesson. They circle the most critical component of a PBL model — the community partner.

A community partner is a group of adults who catalyze the PBL unit. Tutors are in charge of collaborating with a local nonprofit organization or city project to be the cornerstone of the lessons. What kind of skills do kids use to unravel answers to these real-world questions? 

PBL tutors engage students by emphasizing communication alongside employable skills. They can also help kids achieve higher test scores in the classroom, even up to the 99th percentile of pupils. Focusing on the day’s needs enables tutors to suggest improvements, and children can see that their development has a tangible impact. They contribute to their growth by listening to feedback and doing introspective exercises.

Based on this information, how would your child respond to this kind of tutoring environment?

Your child feels school doesn’t apply to them

Do you hear your kid constantly complaining that they don’t understand why they’re going to school because nothing they’re learning matters in the real world? Who needs world history or math if it doesn’t matter what you want to be growing up? PBL tutors focus on job-based skills.

A PBL tutor could illuminate why these lessons are applicable and employer-relevant, depending on their application. Suggesting a PBL tutor as early as you notice the child is becoming disinterested in their studies is best. It could prevent long-term side effects like resentment and jadedness toward education. It may also get them excited about further learning opportunities like the International Baccalaureate (IB) program, which also focuses on authentic problem-solving.

PBL tutors help kids tackle those feelings with their community to contextualize the importance of subject areas. For example, children that feel learning about personal finance is relevant can work wIth an organization that prioritizes community budgeting to execute betterment projects. How does paying attention to finances make citizens and students happier?

They could work better with others

PBL methods require teamwork and communication to execute big ideas. Your student may crave a group working environment, so a PBL might help them expand their skills. However, kids not predisposed to working with others might have more to gain from a PBL tutor.

More advanced students on a collegiate path may work on unraveling the origins and impact of an invasive species in their county. Children must be proactive and collaborate to divvy responsibilities, collect samples, conduct in-the-field observations and take notes. 

They must then consolidate their findings in a presentation to deliver results that express the culmination of their learning to their tutor. In these circumstances, they can see how their behavior impacts the whole.

The student feels like their voice doesn’t matter

A tenant of PBL is voice and choice. Tutors prime students to speak up when they would otherwise feel constricted in a classroom or feel peer pressure not to interrupt the lesson. Tutors facilitate an environment where kids know when to contribute or vocalize opinions respectfully. They should also feel free to make decisions on how to execute projects. 

The kicker is tutors also provide limitations when necessary. It’s a delicate balance. Students must know that total voice and choice in the real world is not practical, but it’s about etiquette and the value of knowing their thoughts in appropriate circumstances. PBL tutors will listen when formal education may not provide that luxury due to time constraints or having too many students per teacher.

Eventually, your learner can feel important, especially when they see their suggestions and choices make a difference.

Learning from a PBL tutor

Getting a PBL tutor for your student might be the opportunity they need to grow. It’s a chance to see education in action outside a limited classroom setting. They can work with other passionate learners to prepare for the workforce, regardless of their destination. PBL tutors work with students to deepen their understanding of what they want to do and how they want to learn to be a version of success that means the most to them.

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