More Tuition Isn't Always Better.

Child thinks aloud about his weekly schedule: "Monday- Physics tuition. Tuesday- Chemistry tuition. Wednesday-hurray, no tuition. Wait a minute, CCA for the entire afternoon. Thursday-Maths tuition. No TGIF-because there's English tuition. This is despite me having regular consultations in school with Mr Grammar Nazi. Oh not to forget CCAs once again on Friday. Weekends for rest? While Jesus gets to rest on Sunday, I have to attend piano classes and complete my never-ending pile of homework assignments. I hate Sundays. Wait a minute, I don't just hate Sundays. I hate my life."

Does your child look like a zombie character from "THE WALKING DEAD" TV Series these days? All weary and unusually quiet for extended periods? Absolutely zero appetite for consuming human food?

It could be your fault.

You are afraid he will lose out to his peers in studies and eventually have to endure a less brighter future, so in a somewhat coordinated panic, you stuff his face full of private tuition sessions. I got news for you Mommy (and/or Daddy): you are not helping the goose to lay eggs. You are strangling the goose.

There's no doubt you love your child dearly, so you are willing to shell out hundreds (or even thousands) of dollars to ensure he has the best academic help money can buy. But there will come a point when the child's mind is so emotionally saturated and stretched, hiring additional tutors or increasing the frequency of lessons would only bring more harm than good. Which is why we recommend not breaching the following thresholds:

1. Stop At Two.

There will always be a gazillion reasons available to justify a fresh sign-up with a tutor when you already have a few at hand, but the child's productivity diminishes once his learning load crosses the tipping point.While he might still dutifully attend all tuition sessions, deep down he has mentally willed himself to survive the hours rather than actually desiring to benefit from what is taught. In the end, his grades do not improve, and you spend sleepless nights wondering why. We say, time to dial back on the intensity of your efforts. Engaging two tutors for your child is typically sufficient. Okay maybe three, but no more. Give the child space to breathe and discover things for himself.

2. The Maximum Frequency is Four.

An apple a day keeps the doctor away; a tuition lesson a day doesn't necessarily keep bad grades at bay. Twice a week is largely constructive, thrice a week still acceptable but four times a week-that's pretty much pushing the limits. A student needs time to process and internalize the stuff being taught. Plus moments alone to properly compile/consolidate his queries for future clarification. And not forgetting he should have a "life" beyond studies (read: playtime) in the name of preserving sanity. It might be too late if your child starts imagining his mechanical pencil as a lethal weapon to be used on his teacher's neck.

3. More Than 1 Tutor For The Same Subject Equals Bad, Bad Idea

Tutors A and B are deemed equally good, so some parents engage the two of them concurrently in the name of getting the best of both worlds. This trend while not prevalent at the present, is nonetheless unsettling. Different tutors have varying coaching styles, and very possibly differing opinions on how to answer certain question types. Not wrong, just different.

Toss in the "My way, or the highway" attitudes of certain tutors into the mix, you have the perfect recipe for making your child utterly confused and stressed. Whose advice should he heed? Should he continue using separate answering techniques to please separate tutors? Why is life so miserable?

One tutor for one subject. End of story. Seriously. Anything more, you the parent are genuinely demented.

Studies and grades aren't everything these days; success can be attained on many other fronts. Besides, if adults can ask for work-life balance from their employers, shouldn't youngsters also have the right to make similar demands?