During my studying days at UM, i worked as lab tutor as well, during my final years.
My view on lab tutoring is like this.
You see, the students already had copies of lab result from peers and seniors which they will "re-produce" and resubmit.
They also already had the lab test papers before they entered the lab. Well at least that's why I asked from the students before they enter the lab.
And so, during the lab tutorials, what I did, is giving my "point of view" of it.
Once, I told them the story of brakes used in lifts, which is not mentioned anywhere on the notes, but basically I told them because it is not mentioned by anyone.
I told them, you people are smart enough to understand the concept of it, i do not need to lecture on the theories anymore. Let's get practical, shall we?
And so, I handled the lab tutorial for Fluid Mechanics, Mechanic Vibration and one lab about energy efficiency on airconditioning.
Reason I knew so much about those, is because I failed those subject once, and had to retake it, nevertheless, I found that those subjects which I had to retake are those who I remembered perfectly even today.
I could practically write the Bernoulli equation, and give a talk about it, because I still use it to calculate pump head during my construction years, and because I knew, I took the Fluid Mechanics class twice.
Tuition. Ok, I do not like to do private tuitioning even though the profit's more.
I rather worked at tuition centers, so I don't have to worry about travelling, whether student pays the tuition center or not, etc.
And what I did is, I will give my "point of view" of the subjects.
I told the students, and so, there is "my point of view" which you can follow, or you can make and follow your own way, either way I don't care. Whatever understanding you have, as long it works, then it works.
Like in maths, sometimes students told me math tricks or 'abacus tricks" on how to calculate the numbers. I told them, if it can be faster than your calculator, then use it. If not, it is just hollow talks.
I focus too much on this because I want to convey one thing. It's you who's going to use it in your exams. Find a way that works. That's all.
It's not about me as a teacher. It's about you finding a way to deal with the problem.
I never like to feel attached to any student at all. I told them, I don't care about your personal life and problems. I'm here to show you my "way". If you think it's good then follow and innovate or whatsoever.
Sometimes, kids, they look upon at the ones who teach. That's ok. But I'm not their parents, their taiko, their brother or whatsoever.
And so, there are problematic students. But basically, they do not want to be there. I told them, go and tell your parents to pay money where you want to be.
I shared my views with the bosses of the tuition center. Citing Robert Kiyosaki's book "Rich Dad's Before You Quit Your Job : 10 Real-Life Lessons Every
Entrepreneur Should Know About Building a Multimillion-Dollar Business".
In business, there are good customers and there are bad ones as well. If you want to be happy, then always exclude the bad ones because it'll influence other good customers as well. Usually 85% good - 15% bad.
If you applied it in teaching, there are good students and bad students. Bad ones are those who doesn't want to be in your class, that's it.
They can talk about their problems from A-Z, but the most important thing for me, do you want to be here to listen to my "point of view" or not?
If your problem is bigger than your need to stay here, then please go.
We do not have time.
I got to "teach" those who want to learn.
And so to me, I rather focus my effort for those 85% who want to be there.
Be strict to those 15%, and you'll get the respect from the parents of the good 85%. In the long term, everybody will know we are not here to be "jokers" or "kids-entertainers".
I also do not like to join "events" for students. I do not want to be attached to them. They are with me to know my "point of view". Nothing more than that.
Treat learning like work. Like a job.
And you will find it easy when you grow up and work like other people.
In working, there is no such thing as a "mama" or "papa". You do your job and you get paid. You do your things wrongly, you get screwed.
Treat your personal problems by yourself, and don't mix it with your job. Corporate lifestyle is not so forgiving, oh dear students.
To those who knew me personally, or those who chatted with me, they all know about one of my relatives who is a school refusal.
To me, he becomes like that, because he didn't like doing things that he dislike.
That's the idea. He didn't knew, until quite late, that everybody had to do things that they dislike. Everybody's got their dues in life to pay.
You think everybody wants to work? No. But we do it because we had to.
Like that story at Wadi Kurede blog, the problematic students are those who are allowed to do things as they like or dislike.
If they cannot learn that, they cannot even adhere to laws, religion or those things that made mankind "functional".