Blog Tutors Tutoring Tips How To Identify Your Students’ Different Learning Styles

How To Identify Your Students’ Different Learning Styles

It is important for you to note that all children are different. Personalities, upbringing, experiences; they are all diverse. As a tutor, you will meet this kind of diversity. There is another thing you will meet, and that is the fact that all students have different learning styles and abilities.

Many teachers adopt a one-size-fits-all teaching approach. This usually makes some students fall behind in class. Their learning style is different from what the teacher expects. This is when the parents hire you, a tutor. You need to be mentally prepared to see different learning styles in your students. You also need to be prepared to tutor them in a way that they will be able to learn at their own pace.

The Strugglers

The strugglers are the easiest type of students to recognize. They typically exhibit the following characteristics:

1. They don’t particularly like school: they find it difficult
2. They don’t like certain subjects: they find them difficult
3. They can’t keep up with the learning pace in school and lack confidence in their abilities in certain subjects.

Their main problem is that they don’t have a strong foundation in those subjects. Rectifying this problem is easy. Start teaching them the basics. Don’t rush them, but go slow and steadily. Move from the basics to intermediate at a pace they are comfortable. You will know this by how fast they learn and improve their skills. Be understanding and encouraging. This will boost their confidence in themselves.

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However, you must explain your plan to the parents first. They may feel that you are taking them too far behind. Explain to them why this is necessary. Show them the progress their child is making in subjects they found difficult. This will calm their anxiety.

The Able But Unconfident

These are the type of students who are very brilliant but don’t believe it. You can throw any task at them and they will complete them successfully. Before the task, they are not sure they can do it. After the task, they say they got lucky. This lack of confidence affects their performance in the classroom.

When tutoring this group of students, your approach should be similar with that of The Strugglers. Take them back to the basics. This isn’t meant to show them what they missed. This reveals to them just how much they already know about the subject. When you notice them gaining confidence, take them to their present educational level. Teach them new ideas based on the knowledge they already have. Ask them questions to stimulate them into thinking on their own and leading them to the right answers. As their confidence grows, reduce your aid. When the finish exercises without your help, point out to them how they didn’t need your help for it.

Avoid praising them too much. They need to know that they have what it takes to succeed and recognize it on their own.

The Meanderers

This is another common type of student. Meanderers are students who are considered to be average. However, they have a lot more potential than just being average. They are the unnoticed ones in the classroom. They need a little more attention from teachers to truly excel in their studies.

These students need to be motivated to do more. Talk to them; learn about what they like and what they want to be in the future. During your tuition classes, organize interesting activities based on what you have learned. These activities should capture their attention and make them want to learn more.

Motivate them by making them take pride in what they have achieved. Give them feedback, praising their efforts. Ask them how they feel about what they have done. This will build a passion for learning that will let them excel in the classroom.

The Poor Learners

The poor learners are the students who literally don’t know how to learn. These students do not have the necessary skills for studying. They tend to cram their notes for tests and exams. Their focus is on getting the answer right, not actually understanding the concepts leading to the answer. Poor learners have many problems in the classroom:

They can’t concentrate in class
They do not engage or contribute to lessons
They find it difficult to learn from what they study on their own
They find it hard to stay in one place and study

Let the parents what their child’s challenge is. They may want to see progress, but that won’t be immediately possible. Make sure the parents understand this from the beginning.

Your tutoring will be heavy on showing the student an exercise and discussing it. Talk about how to go about completing the exercise. After that, talk about what methods helped in accomplishing the task. Emphasize on how to choose skills and use resources to achieve a goal. Show them how they can get past snags in their studies, such as asking their mates and teachers.

The Aspirational Able

These students are brilliant and confident, but they feel they can do even better. Their parents may want them to go higher in the studies, so they get a tutor to give their children classes.

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In this case, your tuition is based on what the parents and students want to emphasize on. Some may need help in preparing for exams. Your focus will be on finding out what they are great in and not-so-strong in, then planning your tuition around that.

Others will want a deeper knowledge of a certain subject. In this case, you can tell the students why you love the subject. Encourage them to consider what interests them. Ask them about topics they are curious about.

Those With Special Educational Needs

This refers to students with who have dyslexia, or some learning disability that needs more scientific knowledge.

Talk with the parents. Ask them for any diagnosis they received from a specialist. Find out what steps they have taken, and which ones worked well with the student. Include these methods into your tuition classes. Carry out extensive research on what others have done concerning the type of special need you are dealing with.


Every child has a special educational need. Lumping them all together will leave others behind, while others will get lost entirely. Understanding your students and their learning abilities put you in a better position to help them. Learn to identify the styles of learning that each student exhibits.

Prepare your tuition sessions with their needs in mind. Make sure to inform their parents of what you are doing and why. Go at a pace that suits the students, increasing difficulty levels as they master more skills. Every child can learn; you just have to find out how.

For more articles that enable you to excel as a top tutor, here are the selected ones:

5 Problems Faced by Every Tutor in Singapore
7 Ways Home Tutors Can Support Students with Special Educational Needs




Rum Tan

Rum Tan is the founder of SmileTutor and he believes that every child deserves a smile. Motivated by this belief and passion, he works hard day & night with his team to maintain the most trustworthy source of home tutors in Singapore. In his free time, he writes articles hoping to educate, enlighten, and empower parents, students, and tutors. You may try out his free home tutoring services via or by calling 6266 4475 directly today.