Christie J. Banks-Experienced, Patient Tutor For Students Of All Ages

Christie J. Banks-Experienced, Patient Tutor For Students Of All Ages

1 employee
21 years in business

About this tutor

Experienced, patient and flexible tutor (with a good sense of humor) offering expert services in a wide variety of K-12 and college subjects to students of all ages in the Orange County area.  Grade school, high school and college academic subjects, (excluding higher math and foreign languages other than Spanish; I am semi-fluent in Spanish).  ESL, test preparation, (ACT, PSAT, SAT and GRE) and overcoming test anxiety.  Retired philosophy instructor of over ten years’ experience (SAC & SCC), Master’s in philosophy with Master’s thesis and double Bachelor’s in philosophy and psychology, (Cum Laude, Phi Beta Kappa, U.C. Irvine).  Skilled at explaining complex ideas and establishing rapports with my students.  Adept at tailoring my teaching style to the individual needs and interests of the student. Experienced in working with people from a variety of ages, cultures and backgrounds, with a deep appreciation of cultural diversity.  Also offering freelance writing services (academic writing, content writing, articles, blogs, ghost writing/collaboration, resumes and proofreading).  Accomplished equestrian and riding instructor in English (snaffle only and starting over jumps) & Western. Also offering training services (specialty starting young horses).  Over 20 years’ experience with Thoroughbreds, Arabians, Quarter Horses,  Happy to meet for tutoring at your residence or quiet restaurant in your vicinity.  Re riding lessons, I do not provide horses or facilities. Flat rate of $15.00/hr. for all services.

My favorite part about teaching is that moment when a student has an
“AHA!” moment of new realization and understanding, (the excitement and the smile!)  It is very exciting to see the pride they feel from mastering new knowledge. 
.  I also very much enjoyed the occasions when students have told me that I opened up to them new ways of looking at the world (but philosophy does have a way of doing that). 

My favorite part about writing I can only explain as “the writer’s groove”, when the writing flows out effortlessly.

My favorite part about giving riding lessons is when a student exhibits “good hands”, (“good seat” will always come with practice but having good hands is a delicate art).  My favorite parts about training horses are when a horse relaxes and shows trust (key elements) and the first time I ask for a gallop on a loose rein and the horse just jumps into a gallop.

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Santa Ana, CA 92701
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What is your typical process for working with a new student?

Introducing myself, including information regarding my professional background, children, interests, etc. and finding out about the student's interests, (to establish an initial rapport).  Finding out what general areas and specifics the student is having trouble with and reassuring him or her that we can overcome any obstacles with a bit of time and effort, (to relax and encourage the student).  Using humor and answering any questions of the student to overcome anxiety and shyness.  

What education and/or training do you have that relates to your work?

I taught over 65 classes in philosophy at Santa Ana College and Santiago Canyon Community College for over ten years, (Introduction to Philosophy, Intro to Philosophy Honors class, Logic, Ethics, World Religions and History of Philosophy).  I have been a freelance tutor in the Orange County area for over ten year for students in grade school, high school and college.  I am experienced in tutoring academic subjects in all areas, (excluding higher math and foreign languages other than basic Spanish), ESL classes (Spanish speakers only, as I am semi-fluent in Spanish), test preparation (ACT, PSAT, SAT and GRE) and overcoming test anxiety.  I was also a Teaching Assistant at the University of California, Irvine for several years while I was a graduate student there.  I have a Master's degree in philosophy and double Bachelor's degrees in philosophy and psychology (cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa) from the University of California, Irvine.

Do you have a standard pricing system for your lessons? If so, please share the details here.

$17.00/hour, (reduced group rates available).

How did you get started teaching?

I first began teaching as an EOPS student for Santa Ana College at the request of one of my philosophy instructors, John Velasquez.  I discovered that I enjoyed teaching and that I was quite good at it.  I ended up changing my major from pre-med veterinarian to philosophy two years later with the plan to become a philosophy instructor, which I was able to do for over ten years, (until being laid off due State government funding cutbacks by Gov. Schwarznegger).  

What types of students have you worked with?

I have worked extensively with students from the first grade level on up, including ESL students (Spanish-speaking children and adults) and college students.

Describe a recent event you are fond of.

As I am an accomplished equestrian but I am no longer able to own my own horse, I was very happy to discover a wonderful riding stable in the San Diego area called the Blanco Brothers.  They have excellent horses, (unlike most stables), including full-blooded Quarter horses that are working cow ponies, and they will let good riders gallop and even run their horses on the beach.  (Three-hour rides, 1 hour to and from the beach and one hour on the beach.) Wonderful and very knowledgeable people who take excellent care of their horses.  (Ask to see Chuy's blue roan stallion, he's beautiful.)

However, regarding teaching, my favorite part about teaching is whenever a student has an "AHA!" moment of new realization and understanding, (the excitement and the smile!)  It is very exciting to see the pride they feel from mastering new knowledge.  I also very much enjoy the occasions when students have told me that I opened up to them new ways of looking at the world, (but philosophy does have a way of doing that). 

What advice would you give a student looking to hire a teacher in your area of expertise?

Avoid teachers (in any area of expertise) who think they know everything, are arrogant and/or impatient.  Simply having a degree does not necessarily make someone a good teacher (or a good person).  Find someone who is ethical that you like, trust and respect.  During teaching sessions, never be shy about asking your tutor to repeat or explain anything to you that you don't understand.  Let the tutor know if he or she is going too fast for you.  People learn at their own pace and all of us have areas we are good at and learn easily, as well as other areas that give us trouble.  

What questions should students think through before talking to teachers about their needs?

Identify the specific problem areas you need help with and don't be shy about stating your needs up front, you are paying the tutor to help you do better.  Be confident about your own ability to learn, but also realize that it takes time and effort.  Finally, be willing to put in the study time outside of the tutoring sessions. 

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