I think it was either late last year or very early this year that my forever friend suggested I start tutoring to help out my finances this year. I balked a fair bit. I had never really enjoyed tutoring, but it made logical sense, so I started the tutoring branch of my business.
Thank you, Karyn.
Another of my closest friends hired me to mentor her and tutor her child, almost straight away. This pushed my business into start mode and empowered my confidence.
Thank you, Renee.
English, reading, writing, spelling and mentoring adults in writing. Bliss. I decided to use Facebook as my main tool for promotion and advertising. I set my rates. I encountered some public opposition to them. I countered that.
Small businesses are taxed approximately 30c in the dollar. Plus, I am a mobile tutor which means petrol expenses, and wear and tear on the car. Plus, purchasing teaching aids and stationery. Plus, I have to make a living to pay bills.
Add to that, I am an exceptional teacher. It has taken me a long time to own this. I am not exceptional for everyone, but the right people find you and stay a while, and I am exceptional for them.
And, not only am I an exceptional teacher, but I am an amazingly resilient and wise human being. I know stuff, because I’ve suffered and learned from my suffering. I share this with my students; I always have.
My students get the whole Tina package. We work on what we need to work on. Some days this is academic stuff, some days it is anxiety, or stress relief, or trust, or confidence … whatever my client needs, I try to offer.
Then I received a question about Maths tutoring. I responded to say that I didn’t tutor Maths, but I would try to find her someone. I spoke to Renee (a Maths Head Teacher) who told me to pull my head in because I could definitely teach Year 6 Maths. I replied to the parent and told her I could give it a go, and we could see if it worked and she embraced that.
I offered my services in Maths tutoring at a discounted rate, because I didn’t believe I would be good enough. I have surpassed my own expectations and now my rates are equal.
Thank you, Sophie.
Tina’s Tutoring grew, and grew quickly. I now work every afternoon and evening during the week, and all day on Saturday.
And, I love it. Every second of it. What’s more, I love my clients, and I love their families. I always imagined it would be awkward being in people’s homes, but it isn’t. I feel very welcomed in all of the spaces I work in.
I had a rough few days as a casual teacher this past week. In the old days, before the business, I would have felt sorry for myself and come home to mope. This week though, I got into the car, left work, breathed deeply, listened to my audiobook, and became even more excited to see my clients.
We have also started seeing improved results and happier, more confident children.
I firmly believe that success at school comes from the relationship between the teacher and the student; if a child likes their teacher, they will want to learn and they will learn. That relationship forms the foundation for success. Without it, learning is achievable, but loveless.
Relationships take time to build. I will miss my kids when they no longer need me, but I know that we both leave enriched. See, I get just as much as I give. If not more.
I love seeing kids finally get how to do something. I love seeing kids grow in confidence. I love seeing kids celebrate their success. I love seeing kids learn that marks aren’t everything. I love seeing kids love learning. I love seeing kids try, more than anything. I love seeing their smiles.
I love my business. It doesn’t feel like work, and even when I am utterly exhausted, feeling demoralised in life, I find the spark to keep going and am rewarded for it as soon as the door opens.
I used to feel this way about teaching in schools. The politics, and increased and unnecessary workload, has changed that for me. It is important to be happy and to feel fulfilled. As a teacher I felt taken for granted, minimised and very over worked. I do not feel that way anymore.
I earn significantly less money, am always very, very poor, but I am blissfully happy.
I know which I would prefer.