Independent Educational Consultant & World Languages Specialist
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Frequently asked questions
What is your typical process for working with a new student?
For all subjects I teach, before I even commit to the assignment, I always set up an initial meeting at NO CHARGE during which I take the time to discuss my prospective student needs and goals, break the ice, make sure we are comfortable working together but most importantly, that I AM indeed the best fit for them.
TEST PREP - Free initial mock test to assess prior content knowledge and identify areas on which to focus first.
ALL WORLD LANGUAGES - During our initial meeting, discuss my approach to teaching my languages, share resources that compare ‘my approach’ to second language acquisition and the ‘traditional approach’, share samples completed by students I have taught/I am teaching (students’ identification witheld) to demonstrate how and why teaching languages is different from teaching math, science, or even English Language Arts.
I spend some time on the front end to do this because I want my students to ‘trust the process’ (aka trust themselves!): I want them to be confident that, akin to how we ALL learnt our first languages, our focus will be on understanding the new language first and production will start later (Teaching Communicative Language, Teaching with Comprehensible Input, Natural Approach to Language Acquisition) but this doesn’t mean that they aren’t LEARNING anything... We would never dream of asking a toddler or even a preschooler to conjugate verbs, recite vocabulary lists, or give a presentation on a cultural tradition, why should we expect it when WE are learning a second one?!
I want ALL my students to realise that language acquisition is attainable, even those of you that always believed “they were not good at languages”!
When I used to be in the classroom, we had classroom rules: my most important one was “come to your lessons with an open mind and do your 50% (listen carefully)”. The next one would have been to “trust the process”: know that our ability to use our first language has prepared our brains to learn new ones and enabled us to do so in a fun and relaxed setting! So sit back, listen carefully, and ENJOY the journey!
SPANISH & ITALIAN -
I offer all my prospective students an initial (complimentary) language assessment and interests survey to ensure that, from our very first meeting, we can focus our work together on their needs and goals.
ESOL - I am provider with Oxford University Press and I utilise their testing platform to offer my prospective students an initial (complimentary) language assessment and ensure that, from our very first meeting, we can focus our work together on their needs and goals.
What education and/or training do you have that relates to your work?
In addition to my science and math background and being trilingual, I studied neurobiology at university (Università di Modena e Reggio Emilia, Modena, Italy), I completed two comprehensive graduate programs: one on teaching sciences and one on second language acquisition, I am currently enrollled in a third one focussed on reading instruction and remediation for students with language based differences (LD/SLD), and I am trained on the Wilson Reading System and Learning without Tears (formerly Handwriting without Tears).
Last, I maintain GA teaching certification in the current fields:
-Broad Field Sciences
-Special Education General Curriculum
- Special Education Science & Math
- ESOL Endorsement.
Do you have a standard pricing system for your lessons? If so, please share the details here.
I offer separate hourly rates for in-person, online lessons based on whether the lessons requested will be private, semiprivate, or small group as well as offer discounted prepaid packages and recurring monthly plans.
How did you get started teaching?
I started tutoring and teaching when I was at university (late 1990’s and never stopped: I love sharing what I know and how to learn how to learn something we know knowing about that I have been returning to graduate school periodically to gain new skill sets that would enable me to meet the needs of my students.
What types of students have you worked with?
I have worked with students of all backgrounds (traditional, non-traditional, homeschool groups, individually homeschooled, hospital homebound support, and virtual/on line school support), levels (preschool to high school, college, adult learners, and busy professionals), and in a variety of settings (private, small group, homeschooling groups, homeschooling coops, ad hoc math and science enrichment days/half-days) and even remote instruction when the logistics called for it.
What advice would you give a student looking to hire a teacher in your area of expertise?
My advice to anyone who is looking for a tutor for themselves or someone in their care is to ensure the professional they select doesn't just provide them with the content knowledge but is also able to communicate with them, understand their needs, and be responsive as they adapt their instruction to that knowledge.
I ask you that you take time to interview the professional you are considering, ask a lot of questions, make sure the two of you (or your student and the pro) "gel": look for empathy, love for learning, and enthusiasm!
Learning is a life long endeavour (even more so when the goal is language acquisition) and you want to make sure the time you spend on it the will lead to positive learning experiences that will nurture curiosity, interest, and feeling of accomplishment!
What questions should students think through before talking to teachers about their needs?
Q1: What is your role as a teacher/tutor?
My job is not to transfer information to my students but to help them understand how knowledge empowers them when they are willing to go for the ride of a life time to discover that critical thinking, problem solving, and resilience are more important than always being always correct or getting the correct answer at the first try.
Q2: What is your end goal as a teacher/tutor?
My goal is for my students to become independent and curious learners; in other words, for them to NO LONGER NEED MY HELP but feel that our time together was well spent and, because of this, I count on them to recommend me to their friends and families that may need help or want to learn a language!
Last, make me a proud teacher to whom they will send random texts/emails with pictures of them as they experience life milestones!