Quality & Attention.
Tutoring is my profession, not my side gig. This means your needs & schedule are my priority, and that you can count on long-term support should you desire it.
Better still: I was a high school English teacher for eight years and have worked with students from a wide range of learning differences (ADD/ADHD, ASD, CAPD, dyslexia, dysgraphia), experiences (trauma, anxiety, mood disorders), backgrounds (linguistic, cultural, religious, economic), and grade levels.
Oh, did I mention I have a Master’s in Education from Stanford, and a B.A. in Literature from UCSC? But don't worry, I'm not too stuffy. (Case in point: I started that last sentence with "But"!)
I specialize in 6th grade-college level English/writing and academic coaching (organization, time management, prioritization, study skills). I like to approach tutoring collaboratively, empathetically, and professionally. Learn more about my credentials and philosophy at my website: www.StrandTutoring.com.
I enjoy the great variety of students and families I get to help. Most of all, I love seeing my students experience the transformative power of language and organization. Although it may make me obsolete at some point, the joy of watching my students tackle their challenges with confidence (and feeling their parents’ anxiety subside) never fails to fill my soul.
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I like to connect with potential clients first to make sure it’s a good fit -- usually this takes place via a 5-15 minute phone call.
At the beginning of the first session, we’ll dive into the root causes of your struggle and why solutions in the past haven't worked. This way we can strategize next steps effectively and not waste time on things that don’t matter to you or are unlikely to work. Then I like to spend the rest of the first session implementing those solutions and getting down to work.
For families looking for long-term tutoring, I often recommend an initial Meet & Greet (30 minutes) before the first session to discuss struggles & goals, strategize, and anticipate any scheduling needs. We can always expand this to 45 or 60 minutes if it feels like more time is needed or if you want to dive into the work.
Some might say that I began teaching and organizing back when I was in grade school. Tutor other students? Organize surprise birthday parties for my teachers? Yup, that was me! After earning my B.A. in literature from UC Santa Cruz and an M.A. in education and teaching credential from Stanford University, I lead the English department at Downtown College Prep High School for eight years. There I taught 9th-11th grade English and developed the 11th Grade Advisory, a course where students found their motivation, developed their study habits, and prepared for college. Since leaving the classroom, I have worked for boutique tutoring services and developed curriculum for Adventures in Writing summer camps, where I also have taught and lead sites.
$66/hour for in-person tutoring
No travel fees for locations within Los Gatos, Saratoga, and Monte Sereno
No long-term commitments
Contact me for a quote tailored to you! :)
Last year, I had the pleasure of working with a family whose 9th grade son was extremely bright and yet earning a 1.5 GPA. When I came onto the scene, fall final exams were about to hit, so we quickly identified his main problems and dove into detailed strategizing — exactly what he would study, when, how, and with whom. Thanks to some incredible follow-through, he passed all of his classes that semester.
The following semester, we checked in weekly to keep him on top of his assignments. A lot of students whose grades don’t match their smarts feel ashamed and will keep small failures from their parents until those failures snowball. I’m thankful to say that, with some probing and lots of love, this student was able to open up to me before that snowball grew and when I shared this information in debriefs with his parents, it helped all of us understand him more holistically.
By working together as a true team — student, parents, and tutor — he was able to end his second semester with better habits, internal motivation, and a 3.67 GPA.
Finding the right tutor can be hard. Are they qualified? Will they follow up? Are they available in my area at the times I need? Will they be worth the cost? So beyond asking for recommendations from your networks and googling wisely, my best advice to you is to know what you want and do your homework:
(1) Know your needs.
Write them down and say them out loud. You deserve help, so don’t be afraid to say exactly what you want. I love when clients tell me "In a perfect world..." because then I better understand their vision and priorities.
(2) Check credentials.
If you want someone to help with English writing, then your tutor should (ideally) not just have credentials proving that they’re a good writer, but also have credentials proving that they understand how to teach writing and give effective feedback. It is absolutely ok -- and expected! -- that you ask these questions outright. The wrong tutor for you will get nervous and defensive; the right tutor will tell you about their experience and why they’re passionate about that kind of work.
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