One of the aspects of my job as a Geography Teacher that I love the most is being a Form Tutor. Don’t get me wrong, being in the classroom actively teaching Geography is great, but it pales into comparison when stood up against being a tutor. I haven’t always felt this way and I used to struggle to come up with things to do to fill the time. Then I realised that the best tutor time activities don’t need HUGE amounts of preparation or even input from you, which frees up your time to catch up on all your mentoring conversations and admin work!
I know that sometimes, especially in this long slog of a winter term that you can lose motivation and feel like you’re slipping under the avalanche of marking and data tracking, but give some of these tutor time ideas a try – you might find them interesting, entertaining or useful!
So without further ado, here are 7 Super Easy Ideas for Tutor Time that I love using and in no way have created myself.
#1 – Origami
Origami is great. The Japanese art of paper folding provides a useful challenge for pupils and gets them thinking laterally, creatively and against their natural inclination to ask for help. The best bit? You don’t need to have any idea how to do it yourself! There are a huge amount of online instruction sheets for different origami patterns and even YouTube tutorial videos to help! Of course, you may end up getting suckered in along with the group!
#2 – Watch, Learn and Discuss
If your tutor group are anything like mine then they love a good debate and discussion and they probably also like watching YouTube videos. Well, what if I told you that there’s a simple way to combine the two and have it be an excellent Form Time activity!
There is an abundance of YouTube channels devoted to “What Ifs” and “How Dos” that you can watch with your group and then discuss afterwards. Some personal favourites of mine are:
#3 – The News Quiz
There are loads of different options out there for a quiz of the past weeks news, but personally I like Mike Dean’s version with great graphics and multiple choice answers. Its a staple of our week and has been for years! Check him out on the TES where he uploads it every week, or you can subscribe by email. (I HATE linking to the TES usually!)
#4 – Silent Reading
Nothing is better than a good book in my opinion so why not encourage and enthuse your tutees to love reading too! It’s pure gold to get 35 minutes of uninterrupted reading time and it gives you time to catch up on any tasks too whilst adding value and literacy skills to your tutor group. You could also start a book recommendation display!
#5 – Form Time Ideas
Ever have that tutor time that sneaks up on you and you have nothing else to do? Whack up form time ideas and get your group to work through them! Simple and easy, but giving some great form time stuff to do!
#6 – Homework Day!
This is a big favourite in my tutor group, they love having the chance to complete their homework or revision in school. Some people may frown upon this and say that homework should surely be done at home but I think it’s a great way to use time, catch up on what your students are doing in lesson and create your own homework tasks too!
#7 – Plan An Event!
Once a term we have to hold a tutor group fund raiser and we also have to run a House Assembly. Why not use your tutor time, once a week for a few weeks to do this? Put the onus back on the kids too! I always make them brainstorm ideas in their table groups before deciding on three I like and getting them to vote on them! Then get them planning, preparing, resourcing, etc. You’ll have less to do and your tutees will develop their project management skills too!
I hope that some of these ideas were helpful! Keep clinging on Teachers, there’s only two weeks left until Christmas!