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Updated: 4/18/2007 9:12 am Published: 4/18/2007 9:12 am

If a child's having trouble in a particular subject, tutoring can often be a good solution. But before you take any action, you should find out why your child is failing. In early elementary years, bad grades could be related to a reading problem, or even a medical problem like impaired vision or hearing. For older elementary students, a sudden drop in grades can indicate stress at home, or social problems with classmates. When grades fall slowly, however, this is more likely a need for tutoring. Outside help can be very effective, allowing a child to build confidence in a subject, and often catch up with their class in a relatively short period of time. Depending on where you live, you may find tutors through a franchised tutoring business, from a pool of graduate students or part-time teachers, or even through your local high school. Keep in mind, a fancy degree is less important than someone with a sensitive personality, and good references. Speak with the teacher and other parents, about any tutors they may have hired. A good tutor will make sure the child has mastered basic skills in a subject, before moving on to the next level.

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