Challenges Home Tutors Face and How to Overcome Them

With the rise of home tuition popularity in Singapore, there is also a rise in the demand of home tutors. That is why, more and more people are taking the chance and applying to become home tutors. The vocation is very rewarding and home tutors reap many benefits including a competitive salary and flexible hours. Many can see the lure of this job and aspire to become one.

However, like any other jobs, home tutoring also has its downsides. Tutoring can also be a very challenging job and as a home tutor, you should understand that there will be many challenges you will face along the way and find the best route to overcome these challenges. Every student in home tuition already has some knowledge, skills, and experience that the home tutor has to utilize to make teaching and learning easier for the student and help them achieve their goals. Unfortunately, this doesn’t always come easily and the home tutor may face many problems with the student, themselves, and even the student’s parents.

We’ve gathered some common problems every home tutor will face along the way of their career and how to possibly overcome these challenges.

1. Student’s lack of motivation

One thing that makes home tuition difficult for both tutor and the student is the thought that home tuition is basically more studying on top of studying. Students already study at school and they have to do it again at home. This may be just too much for students, possibly overwhelm them, and cause them to totally lose motivation during home tuition.

Motivation is one of the hardest things to instill in a student. It’s not like a basic trivia or mathematical equation you can teach them and they’ll remember and practice afterward. It has to come from the student herself/himself. A home tutor should be responsible to help the student stay motivated with their lessons.

One way to help student stay motivated is to get to know the student beforehand. Talk to the student and find out about their interests and likes. After which, you can use these interests and apply them to your teaching. It’s always a good thing to relate real-life situations that would translate to something your student is already interested in.

Another trick to help with this is to explain to the students that home tuition isn’t a chore. Help them realize that this is for his/her own benefit and help the student understand that this will not only help with his/her grades now but also in the long run. The student should understand that the home tutor is there to help them achieve their academic goals and improve as a student, not make their student life harder.

2. Pressure from parents and school

In a country like Singapore where there are some high standards in education, it’s inevitable that students will be put under pressure by their parents and/or schools. Singaporean understands that having good education will help them have a better future, and thus, they put great importance to their children’s education and push them to be better.

Students who generally struggle in school are mostly give home tuition. Some of these students will have very low self-esteem and close to no confidence in themselves, thinking that they’re coming to the home tutor because they are a failure. As such, they could also be pressured by their parents and schools to either catch up with their peers or get ahead them.

While the pressure will initially be put on the students, they may be directed to the home tutors once tuition starts. Lots of pressure will also be put on the home tutor from parents who want to see results immediately. Sometimes even if the home tutor does his/her best, some students still don’t fully grasp the concepts or the lessons. In instances like this, it’s easier to pin the blame on you.

The best thing to do in these situations is to not take it seriously. You can only help so much. However, if there may be some lapses, try to reflect also and work on what you could to help the student better. For example, if you find that one teaching method doesn’t suit the student, change or try another method for the student.

It’s always better at the start of the home tuition to communicate with the parents and learn about their expectations from the very beginning. Upon assessing the child, also discuss with them the goals you could set for the child. Sometimes, parents think that getting their child home tutors will magically turn their child into geniuses. Help them understand that this isn’t possible. Set realistic expectations for the child and work on reaching that goal before moving on to bigger ones.

3. Bad behavior from student

All home tutors have encountered students with undesirable behavior at least once in their career. Home tuition sessions usually offers the opportunity to get a closer look at the student and find out the reasons for these problems.

Misbehaving students can be a hassle for home tutors as they tend to distract the lesson and cause stress for the home tutor. As these things are common, it’s best to discuss the behavior with the parents. Inform them about the behavior and possibly find out the reason why the child acts a certain way. By communicating with the parents, you will have reinforcements in teaching the student and calling them out on their behavior.

If you encounter disrespectful students, here are some tips in handling them.

4. Overly-involved parents

While it’s always great to see parents be involved in their child’s academics, there should be a limit on how involved they should be. Stress from dealing with an overly-involved parent may take its toll on the home tutor and possibly distract the sessions in more ways than one.

When dealing with these kinds of parents, stay calm and discuss with the parents in private their behavior. Some parents may not even be aware of what they are doing until you call them out. Assure them that you will be giving progress reports on the regular but if possible, keep their monitoring to a minimum especially during sessions. Help them understand that they may be distracting both the student and the home tutor. However, give them the guarantee of discussing the child’s developments with them before or after the sessions. Remember to also do this politely as you have to remember that they are still the one employing you.

5. Getting enough students

While home tuition agencies are there to help home tutors secure clients, there is still the problem of having too many home tutors. Your jobs vary and depend on the supply and demand in your local area and the subject you are tutoring for.

While tutoring can be a good career path to take, there is also a rise in the number of people trying their hand at tutoring. This means less job opportunities available in certain areas. Some home tutors may even think of relocating to secure a full-time career as a home tutor.

If you’re interested in improving yourself as a home tutor, check out the qualities parents should look for in a home tutor. Another tip would be to apply to home tuition agencies as they will provide more job opportunities, especially if they offer different subjects to different grade levels.

6. Problems in acquiring knowledge

Home tuition is generally supplemental learning for the students who are struggling or those who wish for enrichment. But home tutors will be surprised to find out how much time they can spend teaching new concepts to students. Sometimes students will have a hard time understanding new concepts because they lack the fundamentals required to fully grasp new concepts.

Sometimes the gap you’ll see in the student will be too big and you will have to spend time filling them up. It wouldn’t come as a surprise that some schools inadequately teach the students or at least aren’t too concerned if all students have understood the concept or lesson before moving on.

The best way to tackle this would be to use educational games in teaching. Games provide students the time to practice skills while learning about new things. They will not only learn the new lesson or concept, but they will also have a way to practice it. Set the lessons also in a pace that is comfortable with the student. Don’t rush them but don’t also slack in your job as a home tutor.


Home tutoring isn’t for everyone. It’s a job that has lots of benefits but a home tutor also faces many challenges that require them to have a sense of patience, resilience, and determination aside from the obvious qualities such as expertise in a subject, experience, and many more. There may be a negative side to home tutoring but there are also some positives and if you are truly interested and with the proper mindset, you can overcome these challenges and use them as lessons in the future.

Interested in being a home tutor? Check out FamilyTutor, the best home tuition agency in Singapore. We have three categories of home tutors that offers over 200 subjects for students from pre-school and even beyond university level students.

Want to hire a home tutor for your child? Click here!



Carelle is a teacher who has been through the ups and downs of the teacher and learner life. She wishes for every learner to gain educational satisfaction that will help embody the people they want to be in the future.

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About FamilyTutor!

FamilyTutor is an established home tuition agency in Singapore! We match suitable home tutors for our clients not just to improve the students' academic grades, but also to build a strong rapport and meaningful relationship with the students and even the their whole family. FamilyTutor put every student in good hands!

If you need an excellent home tutor, feel free to call/WhatsApp us at +65 8777-2168! Our matching service is free!

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