Meet Ruby, one of Weave’s online tutors. She lives in Brisbane with her partner and three dogs, and supports a student from Sydney via Zoom.

Read about her journey as a tutor during COVID-19.

Ruby works in early childhood intervention for kindy-aged children who have Autism and teaches senior students in Years 9 and 10 who have Autism. She also works for QUT Online to help facilitate the Graduate Certificate in Education for Inclusive Strategies and Practices for Autism.

She signed up for Weave’s online Tutoring program when COVID-19 first reared its head. “It was and still is such a tricky time for learners and their families. I really liked the opportunity to help,” she says.

“I’ve always been passionate about supporting youth from low socio-economic backgrounds because they don’t always have access to services, let alone free or accessible services.”

Due to her knowledge and skills, Ruby was matched with a student with Autism.

Tutoring on Zoom can be tricky, but Ruby was up for the challenge. “It definitely has its complexities,” she says, “all students need support to engage in online learning and supporting my student required me to be creative and flexible in my approach.”

– Ruby is one of Weave’s wonderful tutoring volunteers

“Fortunately, as a teacher, I’ve already had to transition to online teaching, so I already had some understanding of how I could make adjustments to ensure online learning was accessible for her. It was a little bit of trial and error while we learnt about each other and what worked online and what needed adjusting.”

“It’s all about having a backup plan.”

For Ruby, tutoring is about relationship building. “Every time my student sees my face on the screen and she excitedly says, ‘Hello Ruby’ – it’s just so sweet. That’s what gets me – the relationship you build with the student and their family by creating a positive and engaging learning environment.”

“I want her to be excited to learn. I want her to look forward to our sessions.”

Ruby adds that her student has, “achieved so much. Being able to see her apply what we have worked on is rewarding. When you teach something, and she is able to use it in context or demonstrates transferable skills you cannot help but feel so proud.”

When it comes to tutoring online, Ruby says: “Everything has been really positive. It’s been very supportive in terms of collaborative approach to addressing any challenges. When I’ve had any questions they’ve always been addressed quickly and in such a supportive way. It’s been really simple and overall such a positive experience.”

“I definitely encourage others to sign up. Tutoring is very rewarding and such a fantastic learning experience for yourself as well.”

– Ruby with her partner and three dogs