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Tutoring...Desperate for help!

Students   (506 Views 9 Comments)

8 Likes; 2,379 Visitors; 128 Posts

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So I tutor a class that is lower in the nursing program than I am. We've had one meeting so far, and it didn't go quite as well as I'd hoped. The students were very quiet even when I tried prompting them with questions and getting them to come up and work problems and do things on the board. I asked them if there were any specific things that they were having trouble with, and they all said no. The purpose of the sessions, as my supervisor told me, is to get them working together and using their resources to critically think through things they don't understand or want to know more about. It's hard for me to know what I need to help them with when they're so quiet. Any suggestions for how to get them talking and participating more?

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forevergreatful is a ADN and works as a RN.

1 Like; 2,054 Visitors; 168 Posts

if you know what material is being covered in the class or whats coming up on their exams you can start there. You might have to pick a student instead of waiting for them to respond. Yes they may feel uncomfortable at first if they don't know the answer but thats where the topic of discussion can start. Ask how are they doing on the exams and where would they like there scores to be.

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19 Likes; 641 Visitors; 145 Posts

Getting up to do things on the board in front of people may put some off. Yes, I know eventually they need to know how to interact in various situations as a nurse, but it might be best to do a group activity in a few small groups first, rather than individually. Safety in numbers, so to speak.

Let's say you have 24 people in class. You can make 6 groups of 4 and give them a question/problem/scenario, etc.. If they are not willing to come up with anything they need help on, then you need to really give them something that will challenge them so they do come up with questions later on (for future meet-ups). I would suggest making the students count off 1,2,3,4,1.... so that you group them that way, rather then letting friends gather w/ other friends. This way, they get used to interacting with others. Once they are in their groups, they need to work through 1 question/problem/scenario as a group and present it to the rest of the class and go through the steps as to how they solved their issue and any other pertinent information.

In this manner, you have tackled working as a team, interaction with others, presentations, and problem solving/critical thinking all in one activity.

Edited by Mergirlc
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Cupcake2018 has 1 years experience.

4 Likes; 156 Visitors; 18 Posts

Hats off to you for your willingness to try to help people who clearly don't want to help themselves! I can only imagine your frustration. It is the students who should feel desperate for help, not you. It is my personal belief that students at the college level should be using tutoring as a LAST resort because someone at some level during the admission process should have verified that the students were well-prepared for the program before they were admitted. As adults, they really should be expected to be more resourceful. It's funny, yet quite sad, how so many college "kids" today know how to photoshop their image to death but can't do a basic math equation or solve a simple problem without lots of hand-holding and step-by-step instruction that could easily be found elsewhere (lots of learning resources on the web). If they fail to participate in future tutoring sessions, I'd just report it to your supervisor. No sense on you wasting your time.

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8 Likes; 2,379 Visitors; 128 Posts

Thanks for the advice everyone! For my next session, I'm going to try splitting them into groups of two. I'll have each group of two work on 3 questions that really require critical thinking and knowledge of the content. But each group of 2 will have a different set of questions. I'll give them some time to work with their partner and get them answered, then I'll have each group come up and explain their answers and then we can discuss them as a class.

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19 Likes; 641 Visitors; 145 Posts

Thanks for the advice everyone! For my next session, I'm going to try splitting them into groups of two. I'll have each group of two work on 3 questions that really require critical thinking and knowledge of the content. But each group of 2 will have a different set of questions. I'll give them some time to work with their partner and get them answered, then I'll have each group come up and explain their answers and then we can discuss them as a class.

Sounds like a good plan!

I know sometimes when you're a student, it's hard to just come up w/ a question or general issue you're having. At times, it's just a whole concept and you just don't know where to even began asking a question. I don't know if this is the case here, but at least now, by giving them scenarios it may bring up exact questions and they'll be able to ask them.

Good luck!

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24 Likes; 2,519 Visitors; 117 Posts

When I was a peer tutor, I emailed each person separately that made an appointment that they needed to bring all of their materials: notes from the chapter they were working on, textbook, ATI book, PowerPoints, etc., and be prepared with questions and I could help them work through hard topics.

I didnt want to tell them that they needed to do to do their work before they came to tutoring, but I am not their teacher and I don't have time to be in an hour or two. We sat together at desks. I honestly don't know how I would have even used a board like in a formal classroom setting. It was all talking and looking at their stuff. (in their notes/PPs/books). It worked pretty much all of the time.

I hope that helps a little. Being a nursing peer tutor is hard work, but it is so nice of you to do! And it looks good on resumes ;)

Edited by Mrs.D.

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8 Likes; 2,379 Visitors; 128 Posts

Today not one person showed up for the tutoring session. I spent hours and hours getting ready for it. Starting to wonder if this job is a waste of my time.

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24 Likes; 2,519 Visitors; 117 Posts

Today not one person showed up for the tutoring session. I spent hours and hours getting ready for it. Starting to wonder if this job is a waste of my time.

I think the school's method of forcing a large group together is a bad idea. I'm sorry it's not the experience you're looking for. I wish I knew another way to advise to help you, but the system at my school was well established by the time I worked for them. Good luck.

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