Homework Coaching FAQ'S

How does Lexington Tutoring Inc. differ from other tutoring services in the area?

In addition to their substantial tutoring experience, our tutors are scientists, mathematicians and educators with proven expertise in their respective areas of study, broad knowledge bases across the curriculum and top grades throughout high school and college. All have a love of teaching and a respect for your child’s unique learning needs.

We are not a franchise, nor are we a sign-up list for recent graduates filling in while they seek employment.

While academic coaching†includes elements of traditional tutoring, the goals and process of academic coaching reach further and deeper to teach students to become more effective learners, not simply to survive the crisis of the day. Using current school challenges as a springboard, we teach students executive function skills and help them develop the habits that allow them to succeed in the particular subjects where they are experiencing difficulty and beyond, across all subjects, throughout their academic career, in the workplace and their lives.

Why do Lexington Tutoring Inc.’s methods work?

We pride ourselves on our tutors' enthusiasm for their subjects, excellence in academic achievement and passion for teaching. Our experienced, patient, approachable tutors can adapt their teaching styles to fit the needs of students with time-management struggles, executive function issues, learning disabilities or other difficulties.

We focus on what a student learns and how a student learns. Our homework coaches teach study skills and test prep/taking strategies. They act as their students' amanuenses, secretaries, advisors, teachers, mentors, study buddies and cheerleaders. They help their students to pride themselves on and expand upon their strengths and to diminish their weaknesses. They help their students to gain in self-awareness, self-confidence and self-advocacy, building their arsenals of studying and test taking strategies. This is almost never a short term solution, but long term it is very often life changing.

Some of our students come to us because they are taking multiple AP classes and also participating in a number of extra curricular activities. These students' time-management issues do not suggest executive dysfunction. With these students, there is a great deal to be managed and knowledgeable, well-organized help is much appreciated.

For some students, homework organizational issues may be compounded by executive function problems. Our approach is to teach executive function skills in the context of the current work load at school. When the homework coaching is scheduled for at least two or three weekly sessions and the student has executive function difficulties, the tutor will use the current school challenges as a springboard for strengthening executive function skills.

How does your homework coaching system work?

Typically, the tutor will meet with his/her student for two or three weekly sessions of 90 to 150 minutes to work together on whatever homework is due. The methods by which they work are determined as the tutor assesses the student’s skills and time management strategies.

The weekly reports are our vehicle for communicating to the parents and to the student the bigger picture. The report details what tests or quizzes are coming up, how long range assignments are to be chunked and managed, what difficulties are persisting and what victories can be declared. The contents of the report are what the student needs to internalize in order to eventually be his own coach. For twice-weekly sessions, the report requires 30 minutes of the tutor's time. For once-weekly 90-minute sessions, the report requires 15 to 20 minutes of the tutor's time. We prorate the tutor's emailed weekly report at our support services rate.

Following these sessions, after completing any remaining homework, the tutor may ask your son/daughter to email copies of the completed homework to him/her.

On the days when they are not scheduled to meet, for each class upon which they are focusing in their sessions, it is sometimes effective for the tutor to ask your son or daughter to phone or text him/her and to briefly convey what was covered in classes that day, what assignments were given, what long range assignments were discussed and what handouts were distributed. Then, if possible, the student might be asked to email to his/her tutor scans of any handouts (especially assignment sheets for major assignments) and the website addresses for any major assignments his/her teachers have posted online.

These are all strategies we use, some or all of which might be ones you’d like us to deploy with your son or daughter.

How does your executive function coaching work?

When the homework coaching is scheduled for at least two or three weekly sessions and the student has executive function difficulties, the tutor will put more emphasis on the following, using current school challenges as a springboard:

  • organizing
  • planning and prioritizing
  • recognizing when it is time to get started on something and begin without procrastinating
  • creating and maintaining systems to keep track of information
  • shifting/thinking flexibly
  • accessing working memory
  • self-monitoring/ self-checking

More information about our executive function coaching is available here

Tell me about your concierge tutoring.

Concierge Tutoring is ideal for students who

  • are enrolled in the care of various physician teams or Lexington Tutoring's partner physician organizations
  • have poor executive function skills due to their psychiatric state or specific disabilities
  • have the involvement of caring loved ones

For more details about our concierge tutoring, please click here.

What subjects do you offer?

We offer almost all elementary, middle school, high school and college subjects.

Where do you provide services?

At least until the summer of 2021, all of our sessions will be online: Skype Video, Zoom or FaceTime. Normally, we offer home, office and university/public library visits throughout Metro West and we are able to provide some services in locations that are farther afield with a travel surcharge.

Tell me about your customized on-line learning games.

Often, students who think they are studying are not taking in what they are seeing in their textbooks and worksheets. When students team with their tutors to create our learning games, they learn to reframe their assigned work as questions and answers and to anticipate their teachersí questions and answers. If you would like to explore this option, your tutor will work with your middle or high school student to create online flashcards and computer games for the material covered during homework sessions.

In between sessions, your tutor may ask the student to email to him/her notes on the homework, which we will also convert to flashcards and computer games--very handy for midyear or final exam prep and in subjects where a large quantity of information must be memorized, such as biology.

By participating in this process, students will hopefully strengthen their ability to perceive and integrate the main ideas in their reading and often make substantial gains in their time-management and organizational skills. Eventually, we hope that our students will add this kind of focused note-taking to their learning strategies.

Tell me about tutor-facilitated study groups.

Our tutor-facilitated study groups encourage participants to:

  • examine, reflect on, and refine their own understanding
  • become more confident and independent learners
  • acquire the skills for building their own support networks of like-minded students as they continue in their education

We suggest that you consider hosting a small weekly, tutor-facilitated, test-prep study group in order to try out this very effective method of preparing for mid-year exams, AP tests, SAT II subject tests and final exams.

Please ask us about our discounted rates for tutor-facilitated study groups.

My son/daughter has difficulty keeping track of assignment and project due dates. What do you recommend?

Many of our students have found that slip-ups in tracking assignments and projects can present a real obstacle to their success. Our organizational coaching helps students with attention-related concerns and/or executive functioning issues to manage daily challenges, such as prioritizing time, connecting actions to outcomes, and planning ahead.

Our homework coaches have found that Google Calendar-- a creative, unique, free online time-management tool--can help ameliorate this problem. Students generally love technology, and use mobile phones frequently to text message or email friends. Our system takes advantage of this, and allows students to text message or email their assignments during the day to their Calendars for future input and prioritization later that evening. Each evening, students can view the current tasks, track long-term assignments, plan activities, and move uncompleted assignments to the following day. Our tutors (and our studentsí parents) also have access to these calendars, and can facilitate the system or make notes and suggestions where appropriate.

Tell me about your AP tutoring and test prep.

Information about our AP test prep and tutoring is available here.

Are any of your homework coaches Massachusetts certified learning disabilities specialists?

Yes, three of our tutors are learning disabilities specialists. Four others have substantial experience with students who have learning disabilities. All have deep skill sets across the curriculum. They offer substantial, knowledgeable academic support in math, science, history, language arts and MCAS/SAT/SAT II prep in addition to working with their students to increase their conscious awareness of the various strategies available in their own academic situations and how to choose the ones that will be optimal. More information about our four learning disabilities specialists is available here.

For more details or to schedule a discounted, introductory session with one of our tutors, please call 781-652-9649 or click here to send us an email.

Do I need to do homework on my own if I have a homework coach?

You will get the most out of your coaching sessions if you bring all of your textbooks to sessions, read the appropriate chapters, keep careful track of long and short-range assignments and make a good faith effort to accomplish some of your homework on your own, saving the most difficult assignments for your work with your coach.

What support do you offer in addition to face-to-face sessions?

We provide a weekly report detailing the current work, noting progress achieved and discussing areas of concern. With homework coaching and/or executive function coaching, we prorate the time the tutor spends on preparing this report at our support services rate of $60 per hour, not to exceed 30 minutes to cover twice weekly sessions. We require this report with all tutoring.

We offer the following optional support services. We prorate whichever services you choose at our support services rate.

  • In order to foster consistency and responsibility, we provide brief, daily support, direction and feedback to our school-age students via telephone and email (copied to their parents) if you so request. These homework check-ins can be very helpful to students who have difficulty with executive functions.
  • We are available to email our students’ teachers for clarification of assignments, feedback on student progress, information on make-up work owed, etc.
  • Please note that we invoice time spent on email and telephone communications from parents to tutors and from tutors to parents as support services.
  • Some of our students find using our customized learning games very helpful. These are based on our student’s notes and text material and supplemented by our own fact-checking and editing.
  • We are available to attend parent-teacher conferences. We invoice attendance at conferences within 8 miles of your tutor’s location at our session rate. Our rates for sessions are posted here.
  • Prearranged, scheduled Skype video supplements to homework coaching sessions are an option. Our rate for supplementary homework coaching by Skype video is the same as our session rate.

We suggest that you send us the email addresses, web site addresses, names and phone numbers of the student’s teachers so that, if you would like us to do so, we can establish regular communication with his/her teachers to maximize your results.

What special materials, texts or software should we purchase for optimum results?

If the student has received CDs or DVDs of any of his/her textbooks this year, please ask him/her to bring them to his/her sessions. He/she should also bring an up-to-date assignment book and any textbooks needed for the work that day.

 █►For more details or to schedule your first session, please call 781-652-9649 or click   here   to send us an email.

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