Robert M.


Robert M.

Tutor

Seattle, WA 98122

Will travel 5 miles

$85 per hour.

4.63 19 ratings

Experienced English/Social Sciences Teacher, Middlebury grad, 800 SATs

Hi! I'm Robert M. and I've been an educator since I was my students' age or younger. I've taught in classrooms, gardens, yurts and theaters -- mostly English and social studies, but also bike mechanics, painting, acting and citizenship skills! I completed M.Ed. coursework from Antioch University with a concentration in Waldorf pedagogy; I graduated cum laude degree from Middlebury, the #4 liberal arts college, in 2009 (GPA 3.56); and I have 800 SAT scores in reading and writing. I've always... [more]


American History

I've taught American history and English in a couple of private Waldorf high schools for the past five years, and worked as a paraeducator before that. I love working with students on their writing, and on the "soft skills" that underlie success: critical thinking and the ability to find ways you can relate to the material.


Vocabulary

When I was a kid, I was embarrassed by my oversize vocabulary. Now, I relish every word I add to it through voracious and wide-ranging reading. Expanding your available words means expanding your available concepts, enabling you to grasp any subject with more vigor and precision.


Grammar

Take your writing beyond "correct!" Together, we can make your sentences shine. I've taught high school English for the past five years, completed all my coursework for an M.Ed. in Waldorf elementary ed (including coursework on grammar instruction methodologies), graduated cum laude from a top liberal arts college (Middlebury '09), and got 800 on my writing SAT!


European History

I teach all regions and periods of history and follow world affairs every day. So I won't just help you memorize kings and battles; I'll help you connect the dots and see why world history is relevant to practically every aspect of our lives.


General Computer

I'm speedy, proficient and fluent in all basic computer applications, and I'm a patient teacher who can work at your pace till you, too, are speedy, proficient, and confident behind the keyboard! In my years working in independent publishing, and for various small nonprofits and schools, I've developed a wide range of everyday computer skills, like savvy search engine use; installing applications; downloading, organizing, uploading and converting files of all kinds; setting up efficient cloud storage systems with Google Drive; getting my life (or yours!) organized with Google Calendar / Keep / Inbox (or whatever productivity apps you like); working with Microsoft Office or other word processing, spreadsheet and presentation programs from the basics to fancy design and nifty formulas; and a host of other skills, tips and tricks. Contact me for work samples if appropriate, or just to chat about what you want to work on! I'd love to help you get to a place where digital tools empower you and put a smile on your face! Consultations are free!


Microsoft Word

I've used Word every day since I was a kid trying to wring a stapled booklet of my poetry out of the stubborn '90s version of the program (it's so much better now!). I use it at my job at a small independent school, where my students joke about how meticulously formatted my syllabi are compared to most teachers. I also do all the promo and design for the school, mostly on MS Word since we can't really afford InDesign, and you'd be amazed at the professional-looking stuff I can make that little program do (message me if you want to see work samples; you'll be all like "I can't believe it's not butter, uh, InDesign!") I offer a free consultation to make sure I understand your particular goals for this surprisingly powerful and versatile program.


Microsoft PowerPoint

I have a fine-tuned sense of design and audience-aware messaging. I'm skilled with layout, transitions, graphics and overall PowerPoint presentation assessment for effectiveness at reaching the target audience.


Writing

I've been a writer since I learned to write, and I enjoy (and excel at) genres from poetry to research papers to op eds. I have both a keen intuitive ear for style and a flawless command of grammar and mechanics (I got 800s on my reading and writing SATs, and can still ace the practice tests I take alongside students in half the allotted time). I've taught English for five years, hold Waldorf certification and finished my M.Ed. coursework including writing instruction classes, and have published dozens of poems and essays in a number of venues. But more importantly, I have an enthusiasm for language that sings that rubs off on my students, and a zealousness for whittling and polishing away at a piece until it shines.


Geography

I've taught social studies, including geography, at the high school level for five years. My specialty is world history from an interdisciplinary perspective, and spatial analysis plays a huge role in what I teach. I love maps and the geographer's way of thinking about the world, so whether it's memorizing all your African capitals or analyzing settlement hierarchies in an archaeological site, I would love to help you boost your skills, and discover how relevant, useful and fun geography is for becoming a true world citizen!


English

I've taught high school English for the past five years, completed all my coursework for an M.Ed. in Waldorf education, graduated cum laude from a top liberal arts college (Middlebury '09), and got 800 on my writing SAT. I've got experience in, knowledge of and, most importantly, enthusiasm for just about every area and period of English and world literature, and can bring a global perspective from ancient tablets to contemporary poetry. I love writing, words and even grammar! I can help you find your own connection with the text, then hone your paper-writing skills from close reading to research to pre-writing to polishing. I believe reading and writing aren't just crucial to empowered citizenship and success -- they can and should be deeply fulfilling, too.


Government & Politics

In my five-year career as a multi-disciplinary social studies teacher at independent high schools, I've developed a number of innovative political science units, and integrated the study of politics with multiple other disciplines. I've designed and implemented courses on including units on the foundations of US government, hands-on local politics in global historical perspective, comparative politics, and persuasive writing for active citizenship. My students call and meet their legislative delegation, visit the statehouse, research and follow bills, and write op eds, letters to the editor, and speeches. Before I entered teaching, I'd taken several credits of intermediate- and upper-level political science coursework from a top liberal arts college (MIddlebury), whose department at the time was distinguished by its rigor and its ideological diversity. My concentration was mostly on political theory, as I was usually taking courses cross-listed with my major, Philosophy. I'm a lifelong learner in this as in most social science fields, and I read widely and regularly and follow politics from the local to the global, as well as engaging in citizenship actively. Thus I have both a theoretical and pragmatic understanding of political issues, ideologies, and strategies that is always evolving through study and practice.


Literature

In addition to being a publishing poet and essayist, I've taught literature for five years in a couple of private high schools. I've helped design and implement outstanding world literature curricula, bringing students the experience and appreciation of a rigorous sampling of classical and contemporary world lit. My syllabi range from Sophokles and Aeschylos to Dante's Comedy (in its entirety), to Goethe's Faust and Achebe's Things Fall Apart, to cutting edge contemporary writers like Anne Carson, Roberto Bola?o, and Qiu Miaojin. I approach literary criticism as its own genre of literature, and bring students outstanding examples of creative and intellectually audacious uses of the critic's pen, often by writers who are themselves on the syllabus, from Nabokov on Gogol to Bola?o on Borges to Carson on the Brotnt?s. I bring students not just knowledge and skills but the ethos of a true lover of literature and person of letters.


World History

For the past five years, I've worked full-time developing and implementing an innovative global history curriculum at two private Waldorf schools. Last summer I gave a four-day professional development seminar on my curriculum at the Association of Waldorf Schools of North America conference. I'm incredibly passionate about world history and its importance for tomorrow's global citizens, and I know from experience that I can make that enthusiasm contagious. Developing my own curriculum has given me a level of research-driven understanding of the field that you can't find in any textbook. I bring my students far more than just the facts of world history -- I help them build up the conceptual frameworks, big-picture knowledge, and most of all genuine interest that propel them to success long after our sessions have ended.


SAT Reading

Besides scoring 800 on my reading SAT all those years ago, I have helped many high school students prepare for the test over the past five years as a full-time English and history teacher. I do the practice tests with them (I can still ace one in about half the time allowed), and we review their toughest questions, find patterns in where they have trouble, and work on underlying vocabulary and concepts. Reading comprehension is hard to teach if you're cramming for the SAT; test-taking skills, however, CAN be taught in a short time-frame, especially with smart, strategically guided hard work. I have testing strategies that work, maximizing strengths and managing weaknesses. I also try to help students see the test as an intellectual challenge or game, and not as a measure of their intelligence or likely success in college (which is isn't). I've always found standardized tests to be fun challenges (even before I could ace them -- and I didn't start out getting 800s, believe me). If that attitude rubs off on my students, they can let go of some of their angst and concentrate on jacking up those scores!


SAT Writing

Besides scoring 800 on my writing SAT all those years ago, I have helped many high school students prepare for the test over the past five years as a full-time English and history teacher. I do the practice tests with them (I can still ace one in about half the time allowed), and we review their toughest questions, find patterns in where they have trouble, and work on underlying vocabulary and concepts. The rules of grammar, diction, usage and style are hard to teach if you're cramming for the SAT; test-taking skills, however, CAN be taught in a short time-frame, especially with smart, strategically guided hard work. I have testing strategies that work, maximizing strengths and managing weaknesses. I also try to help students see the test as an intellectual challenge or game, and not as a measure of their intelligence or likely success in college (which is isn't).


Art History

I took a couple of art history courses in college, and did well, but my main qualification is my lifelong love of art and passionate engagement with various media from ancient to contemporary. I frequently take my history and literature students to art museums, have taught a few high school courses on art practice, theory and history, and spend long hours in museums whenever I'm in a major city. My background in philosophy, literature and the social sciences gives me strong grounding in art history's underlying conceptual frameworks and analytical skill-sets, from cultural studies-style exigesis of works in their spatial, social and ideological contexts to debates in aesthetic theory. Art I love ranges from Moche sculpture, Tang pottery and Sasanid calligraphy; to Dada, Surrealism, and the abstract expressionists; to Robert Rauschenberg, Agnes Martin, Anselm Kiefer and El Anatsui in the postmodern era. Whether you want to engage in passionate (but friendly) debates on aesthetics, discuss a thorny text, or simply work your ID flashcards, I'm always happy to be looking at art together!


Art Theory

I took a couple of philosophy courses that included aesthetics in college, and did well, but my main qualification is my lifelong love of art and passionate engagement with various media from ancient to contemporary. I have Adorno, Benjamin & Williams on my bedstand (waiting to have time off from teaching to read more than a chapter at a time!), I frequently take my history and literature students to art museums, and I've taught a few high school courses on art practice, theory and history. I spend long hours in museums whenever I'm in a major city. My background in philosophy, literature and the social sciences gives me strong grounding in art theory's underlying conceptual frameworks and analytical skill-sets, from cultural studies-style exegesis of works in their spatial, social and ideological contexts to debates in aesthetic theory. Art I love ranges from Moche sculpture, Tang pottery and Sasanid calligraphy; to Dada, Surrealism, and the abstract expressionists; to Robert Rauschenberg, Agnes Martin, Anselm Kiefer and El Anatsui in the postmodern era. Oh, and being from Vermont I'm of course a devotee of Peter Schumann and that particular fork of the Brechtian lineage. Yes, I will happily work with you on anything from radical populist puppet theater to austere minimalist painting to ancient funerary urns. I offer a free consultation. Let's talk aesthetics!


Desktop Publishing

Since high school I've made small poetry books and literary magazines, as well as posters, brochures, and basic non-coding websites for various organizations. I'm very proficient with Word (I can wring way more design muscle out of it than 99% of casual users), and I have intermediate skills with InDesign. I can make a mean Wix site.


Political Science

In my five-year career as a multi-disciplinary social studies teacher at independent high schools, I've developed a number of innovative political science units, and integrated the study of politics with multiple other disciplines. I've designed and implemented courses on including units on the foundations of US government, hands-on local politics in global historical perspective, comparative politics, and persuasive writing for active citizenship. My students call and meet their legislative delegation, visit the statehouse, research and follow bills, and write op eds, letters to the editor, and speeches. Before I entered teaching, I'd taken several credits of intermediate- and upper-level political science coursework from a top liberal arts college (Middlebury), whose department at the time was distinguished by its rigor and ideological diversity. My concentration was mostly on political theory, as I was usually taking courses cross-listed with my major, Philosophy. I'm a lifelong learner in this as in most social science fields, and I read widely and regularly and follow politics from the local to the global, as well as engaging in citizenship actively. Thus I have both a theoretical and pragmatic understanding of political issues, ideologies, and strategies that is always evolving through study and practice.


Homeschool

I was homeschooled briefly as a kid and have always known a lot of homeschoolers who come in and out of the alternative ed world where I've worked much of my career. Depending on the subjects, I'd be very happy to work with homeschoolers, as I've generally found them to be among the most self-motivated, curious students!