Online Volunteer Tutoring - Sarah’s Story

June 11, 2020 by Tas F
Image When we opened our online programme up to new schools in late April, Sarah C was one of the first volunteers to start tutoring - supporting a Year 9 student with weekly one-to-one maths lessons via our online classroom, Bramble. A few weeks later, we checked in to see how she’s been finding her first foray into online tutoring!

Tell us a bit about yourself

For the past 5 years or so I’ve helped children face-to-face in primary and secondary schools with their reading and homework. Lockdown put a dramatic stop to all of that! I’ve been in London for the lockdown and am enjoying food shopping in the great variety of food shops that London has to offer.

Is this your first experience of online tutoring?

I had not done online tutoring before lockdown. I am enjoying it despite, or maybe because of, the challenges. It is hard not seeing facial expressions and being able to draw on paper as I would face to face but I think you can tell a lot through tone of voice and my mouse control is improving.

How are you getting on with Bramble’s online classroom?

Generally the technology has been really good. The notebook format of Bramble works well and I’ve used the scribble page a lot to give additional explanations and prompts. I had an issue with files taking a long time to upload due to slow internet speeds so now try to use files that are below 100kb.

Would you recommend Bramble to other tutors?

I would recommend it to others. I like the way you can annotate on pages that have been imported and also scribble on the opposite page. Being able to change the colour of the ‘pen’ is also easy and very useful. The text tool is a bit clumsy and sometimes I’ve inadvertently written over text - it would be good to be able to drag and drop it around the page. Overall though it is quite intuitive and easy for both the tutor and pupil to use together.

Thanks for volunteering with us!

The Foundation did a great job at launching the online facility in such a short space of time and at overseeing the smooth running of the sessions.
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