Educator for more than twenty years; English major with significant graduate work in education and theology; several years' experience in direct classroom teaching and individual tutoring in all lower school subjects and middle/upper school general science, earth science, English language arts, and Spanish I & II, together with several years' experience in higher education administration and direct student support services. My instructional methodology includes multisensory presentation and ... [more]
We are naturally wired from birth to learn how to put sounds together to form words and sentences and to make meaning. As a linguist and language teacher, I can help anyone who wants to improve his or her English or Spanish vocabulary for social, academic, or professional reasons.
As a linguist, foreign language speaker, and language arts teacher, I am highly qualified to teach grammar and the other language arts as part of a comprehensive language arts curriculum. I have taught and tutored students in grammar and language arts from grade school to graduate school.
In teaching reading, I use a solid phonics-based approach either initially or when other approaches have failed, unless a student has a learning difficulty for which other approaches tend to be more successful. Whatever the method, I use multi-sensory stimuli and multi-disciplinary resources as much as possible. Reading and learning to read should be pleasurable and not just a critical skill for learning other things.
Spanish is my official second language. I have been speaking, reading, writing, and comprehending Spanish for more than thirty years. I taught middle and high school Spanish at private schools in Illinois and New York, tutored many students for the New York Regents exams, and have lead more than a half dozen student service trips to Spanish speaking countries. I currently substitute teach for high school Spanish classes and tutor university students in Spanish.
As an English language arts teacher and tutor, I have taught writing to students from grade school to graduate school. I am also a freelance writer and am currently working on four novels after attending Marlboro College's Words After War Summer Writing Intensive as a military veteran grant recipient.
Aside from being a world traveller and having an insatiable curiosity about people, places, and ideas, I understand the several sub-disciplines of geography, such as physical geography, cultural geography, political geography, etc., and how geography affects and is affected by human activity. Geography today is one of the most neglected yet critical academic disciplines. It is very difficult to be truly educated and to make a real difference in the world without at least understanding geography's big ideas. Whether you simply need help with a course, are a homeschooler, or just have the same insatiable curiosity I have and want to understand more about how the world works, try a seven-lesson package (seventh lesson is free!).
English is my first love. I acquired my first language easily and naturally, without having to struggle learning the rudiments of reading, spelling, vocabulary, grammar, usage, style, punctuation, or literature. As an early, avid reader, it was clear that language was one of my innate talents. But as a world traveler, I have helped many people from many countries who have struggled while trying to learn English. With a B.A. in English, knowledge of a second language, and some work in linguistics, I understand that English does not come so easily to others and am able to help those learning English as a first or second language, those preparing for high school and college, and those preparing for competitive examinations.
I have helped speakers of Spanish, Korean, Russian, and Chinese improve their English and prepare for English exams. I have also conducted workshops or tutored English teachers in Central America for whom English was not their first language.
I read classic literature widely as a young child, pursued a college-prep English track in secondary school, and majored in English in college. I also taught Advanced Placement English Literature and Composition during my English teacher preparation program. I have also tutored secondary and college students in English, Spanish, and Biblical literature.
I have proofread and edited literally thousands of academic and business papers and communications for students, faculty, staff, the military, and course and program developers.
As a linguist, language teacher, tutor, and world traveler participating in multiple student exchanges, I have helped many high school and pre-college students from many countries study and prepare for various standardized tests, including the paper based and computerized TOEFL exams. I use a multi-sensory, multi-disciplinary approach, together with the best TOEFL preparation materials available.
Spelling correctly has always been challenging for some people. In our digital age, it has become even more challenging, yet it is still a critical skill, as our written work products are still judged by the accuracy or inaccuracy of our spelling. But correct English spelling does have rhyme and reason. As a linguist and language teacher, I can help you or your student understand the rhyme and reason behind American English spelling.
I taught lower and middle school general science, life science, and earth science in private schools in Illinois and New York. As a summer camp counselor, I also engaged students in the second through ninth grades in science-related outdoor activities, such as nature hikes, outdoor-living skills, local ecology and geology, animal care, diet, nutrition, exercise, trail and waterfront conservation, and water sports. I use hands-on activities and a variety of print and multimedia resources to make concepts easy to understand.
I taught for several years in Pre-K to 8th schools in Illinois and New York. I completed 18 graduate semester hours in Elementary Education/Curriculum and Instruction at Vermont College.
I learned how to read and was an early and avid reader because I was taught reading through a phonics-based program, the Initial Teaching Alphabet (ITA), which is very similar to the SRA/DISTAR and Orton-Gillingham approaches. I have also used Engelmann, Haddox, and Bruner's Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons and Saxon Phonics. I am also a linguist and have studied the rudiments of phonetics, phonemics, and phonology.
I completed a B.A. in English and 18 graduate semester hours in Education. I taught and tutored primary, secondary, and college students in various academic subjects as well as learning, study, and life skills. I use a multi-sensory, multi-disciplinary approach to teaching and learning.
Coaching students/clients in an examination of educational backgrounds and work history, goals, aspirations, talents, interests, innate abilities, extracurricular, avocational or bivocational pursuits, various occupational assessments, career field exploration and outlook; transferable skills, building the resume, writing a cover letter, basic interviewing skills. Getting to know the student/client on a somewhat personal level rather than simply in a cold "clinical" way in order to help the student/client to discover what their "ideal life" might look like if certain barriers could be overcome; coaching the student/client in problem solving and self-assertion to move in positive directions toward educational and/or career opportunities, and to continue to use problem solving and appropriate self assertion and conflict resolution skills in the work setting. My experience is predominantly with high school and college age students and service members and veterans transitioning to civilian life.
College preparation (early and late), the search process, including advice on visits and tours, the application process, evaluating colleges and determining "best fit," narrowing the selection of schools and "safe" schools, writing the admissions essay, putting students and parents at ease during this typically stressful process, exploring family history to ascertain legacy status or common threads, back doors to the Ivy League, etc. My method is not a dry clinical one; I get to know students/families or adult clients, help them explore many options and pathways to a college education and keep things in perspective as they arrive at their final decisions. I can work with transitioning service members/veterans, middle and high school students, midlife career changers, less advantaged students/clients/first time college attendees.
I have taken and passed New York Regents exams, possess a New York Regents Diploma, and have taught, tutored, and coached students taking New York Regents exams. I taught in private schools and tutored in New York for many years, and I still travel frequently to New York and maintain social, academic, and professional contacts in New York. Although these exams are not given in Vermont, they are given in New York, which shares a rural border with Vermont.
I completed a Justice Systems diploma program, including a police internship, as one of my high school majors, and immediately after, while attending a community college as a Criminal Justice major, worked in the Tactical and Special Services Section, Schuyler County Sheriff's Department, as well as for industrial security corporations. I served process for many years and worked in Army Intelligence, working closely with local and federal law enforcement agencies.
I have read and studied widely in the humanities, and have taken many courses in the social sciences, including courses in Counseling, Criminal Justice, History, Education, and Linguistics. I have also worked in social-services related professions, such as Education, Emergency Services, Civil Affairs, and Veterans' Advocacy.
Many public schools are no longer teaching handwriting and penmanship, yet recent studies show that we remember what we learn better when we write it down. Handwriting and note-taking are critical for learning and remembering, especially for the verbal and kinesthetic learner, and handwriting can be raised to an art form for the artistically inclined. For these reasons, many educators and parents still insist that children learn penmanship, however many parents don't feel qualified or have enough time to teach their children. I can help! I use an arts-integration approach and select whichever handwriting program appeals most to the child and parent (such as Spencerian, for example). Handwriting and penmanship should be enjoyable and meaningful for all children, so my method does not include endless, repetitious, meaningless drills. Although I have not worked specifically with children with dysgraphia, I am willing to try to aid the child who suffers from this condition using appealing, no-stress, tactile methods.