Parents and tutors have definitely encountered such a scenario where trial lessons are requested for their children before they decide to commit to further lessons. Most people think of the term “trial lesson” as meaning one of two things.
The first type of trial lesson is hiring a private Physics tutor for perhaps just one or two sessions to “test the waters” and see whether or not the tutor is a good fit to teach Physics to the student. The thinking behind this is that if the student does not feel that he or she is benefiting that much from the Physics tuition, or that private tuition is not what the student desires after all, then it is best to drop such tuition arrangements.
The second is similar to the above, but with the first Physics lesson conducted free of charge, on the basis that if the tutor lacks the required knowledge to teach effectively, or if the student feels that he or she got little out of the first lesson, then why should payment be made?
Since most parents and students nowadays agree that the second interpretation is not very reasonable and creates an atmosphere of mistrust, we shall focus on the first interpretation. Here are some general areas of consideration:
- Tutor experience in Physics matters
A Physics tutor who is completely new to the industry should be prepared to give more leeway to parents and students who might, quite understandably, have concerns about the tutor’s ability to teach and the tutor’s grasp of the subject matter. If you have never given a single Physics tuition lesson before, or do not have much experience, this is quite a valid and understandable arrangement to have.
However, as you gain experience and acquire a track record of successfully helping students improve their results, both parties should be prepared to commit to at least four lessons or even more to begin with, rather than just one or two.
- Emphasize that you are keen on tutoring students for the long haul
Emphasizing to a parent that you are more interested in tutoring students for the long haul shows that you are committed Physics tutor, rather that a tutor who is only looking to give a few lessons before quitting.
Being a committed Physics tutor for the long term also means that you are prepared to cater your lessons and adjust your teaching style to accommodate different students, rather than adopt a one-size-fits-all approach. Being flexible and sensitive to the widely differing needs of students is an essential ingredient to the process.
The learning journey is one that takes plenty of time. Improvements in Physics exam grades do not happen overnight for the vast majority of students. It is therefore much more beneficial to both parties to structure tuition arrangements that give the student sufficient time to make tangible progress.
- Short-term Physics tuition does have its place for some students
Short-term Physics tuition does have its place for students who are merely looking to pass a final Physics examination that is due shortly, or who just want a quick refresher course. This is, of course, vastly different from seeking to have a trial lesson when what the student really requires is a Physics tutor who can teach him or her for a longer duration. The onus is on the tutor to understand the real needs of the student and to explore the best way to cater to his or her requirements accordingly.