Students who have moved to foreign countries usually all face similar concerns, especially if the country speaks a language that they are not familiar with. As multilingual students, they might have difficulties fully grasping the curriculum as they need some extra time to translate it in their minds.
Aside from difficulties with their studies, multilingual students can also often feel isolated due to the lack of understanding from their peers, and feel as if they are a million miles away from home.
For students in this position, an international tutor might be one of the best ways to help them achieve happiness and success. Here’s why.
1. Tutors are able to explain concepts in a way the student can understand.
As tutors are able to focus on their students individually, they are able to understand and connect with their students more than a classroom teacher. This means that if a student might not be good at speaking English, the tutor can explain it in a more comprehensible manner for them.
A multilingual tutor is an even better option for multilingual students. As a tutor can teach in the student’s mother tongue, they can also understand the syllabus clearly and explain it back to the students in their language.
Most multilingual students are incredibly intelligent, but the language barriers make it difficult for them to fully grasp the meanings of the curriculum. When they have a tutor that can explain it back to them in their native language, you would be surprised as to how often they have a lightbulb “aha” moment when they understand the intricacies behind the question.
Thus a tutor who can explain the concept and syllabus to the student either in their main language, or in a way that is easy to understand, the students will benefit greatly from their teachings and further excel in the classroom.
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2. Tutors who are from the same place of origins as multilingual students give them a sense of familiarity and home.
As parents, you might have moved around a lot and your children will often think about home. International students are usually in the same boat, as they are in the country where they have to learn a new language, and away from the traditional culture, food, and friends that they know back home, they will develop a sense of homesickness.
Tutors who share the same roots as multilingual students are great for the students because it could remind them of home. Speaking and learning in the same language that they are comfortable with is already a huge benefit to their mental health and passion for learning. As students are able to talk to their tutors about home and the experiences they’ve missed, it also serves as a way for multilingual students to feel more grounded and give them a sense of home.
3. Multilingual tutors are able to understand their students, especially because they see themselves in them.
More often than not, international tutors also went through a similar phase or childhood as most of their multilingual students. As parents who grew up in their home country and moved away, it can be quite difficult for them to truly understand and connect with their children who feel like they were taken away from home halfway through their childhood. International tutors have been in this situation before, and they understand how their students feel.
As tutors are able to identify what is the problem their students are facing from a very understanding perspective, they are also able to give mature and solid advice to the students on how to overcome this feeling, and hurdle over any obstacles they may face.
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4. Tutors can be the best confidantes for multilingual students.
As most multilingual students feel like it is hard to relate to those around them, they struggle to find an outlet for their concerns and emotions. In a sense, they want to talk about what they are going through, and how it makes them feel, but they don’t; or rather, can’t, because nobody around them seems to understand it from their perspectives at all.
Even a school counsellor or their parents may fail to fill this role as it boils down to compassion and understanding from shared experiences. An international tutor can fill this gap and be a powerful guiding source for their multilingual students to reach their full potential.
Sometimes, tutors are more than just tutors to multilingual students.
An international tutor might be one of the best ways to help multilingual students rapidly improve their grades, and also give them a sense of familiarity, home, and happiness. In the eyes of the students, they aren’t just educators, but also a friend, a mentor, a family member, and an inspiration for success.