"There is nothing like seeing your pupils' progress, not just academically, but also building their confidence and helping them develop a passion for learning."
I grew up in Hong Kong and was educated there for most of my life. It was only a few years ago that I came to the UK for sixth form and I am now a student at the London School of Economics and Political Science studying Actuarial Science.
I always hated memorising when learning, especially when it comes to maths. I think it is important for young students to develop an intuitive understanding of mathematical concepts. Team Up provides me with a perfect platform to achieve this, and more importantly, play a role in tackling educational inequality by helping children with underprivileged backgrounds.
I tutor two very different pupils with clashing personalities: one being very energetic while the other is more quiet and reserved, both struggling with maths. I try to create a comfortable environment for them to ask questions and not worry about making mistakes.
The first time I met my pupils, they expressed their dislike of maths and this worried me. However, after gradually forming bonds and helping them discover the fun and practicality of maths, they became a lot more willing to pay attention when I taught. After just a few sessions, it was clear that they demonstrated improvement in their abilities.
My ability to explain ideas has improved a lot. To ensure pupils understand the material well, I constantly challenge myself to break concepts down into their fundamental components. This way of thinking has even helped me with my current studies.
It is hard for me to pick a favourite moment in my sessions as I always enjoy teaching and getting to know my pupils. However, there is one incident that I find memorable: one time after the tuition session, I was told by my student’s primary teacher that they had asked if there would be a session next week and that he was looking forward to it. This was a surprise to me as he appeared reluctant to even sit still and listen at the beginning of the programme. Witnessing that transformation meant everything to me.
The curriculum resources that Team Up provides are easy for pupils to follow and the activities come in various levels which suit pupils of different abilities. I felt very supported throughout the Team Up programme, from pre-tutoring training to receiving excellent support from my Programme Manager, Rachel. Debriefs helped me review how each session went and Rachel would also give me feedback on how to improve techniques on teaching and engaging pupils during sessions.
I would recommend this programme to other volunteers without a doubt. There is nothing like seeing your pupils' progress, not just academically, but also building their confidence and helping them develop a passion for learning. Tutoring for Team Up has become something I look forward to every week.
On behalf of the Team Up team and pupils, we say: Thank you Jerry!