I have taken six years of Spanish classes so I know exactly how Spanish teachers in the U.S. and other English speaking countries tend to teach languages. I also know exactly which concepts tend to be the hardest for Spanish learners to understand. I try to help my students not only with their grammar but with their pronunciation, understanding of Latino/Hispanic culture, and confidence in speaking and understanding spoken Spanish as well. I will often refer students to YouTube channels, books, website, and the like to improve their understanding of the language. I am the perfect tutor for students looking to gain a complete and in-depth understanding of the Spanish language from a passionate, patient, and well-informed Spanish tutor.
I absolutely love teaching languages, especially to younger students. I have taught ESL to younger children and have been a tutor of various topics throughout my academic career. However, my passion has always been language learning. I absolutely love working with students who are eager to learn or are struggling to understand certain concepts. My favorite part about being a tutor is that I am allowed a front row seat to a student's learning process; I get to be the first one to see their face light up when they finally grasp a difficult concept or when we discuss how much they've learned. I love being faced with a challenge -- whether that be finding a completely new way to explain a concept to a student or finding the perfect way to cater to my student's learning style or searching for new media outlets (YouTube channels, movies, articles, websites, etc) that help my student learn. Tutoring can sometimes be challenging -- both for the tutor and for the student. However, for me, it's always worth it in the end. There's a great sense of satisfaction in watching a student grow in their comprehension of a subject and in knowing that you played a part in that growth.
Sophie was kind and patient. She encouraged my daughter to get out of her comfort zone and was always happy to discuss new vocabulary or related topics.
I just started with Spanish, so I’m still really nervous to speak any Spanish at all, but Sophie really helped boost my confidence and helped me out of my comfort zone. I’ll definitely be coming back. Thanks Sophie!
With any new student, I spend a bit of time getting to know them a bit better before I begin tutoring. I ask about their learning experience(s), style(s), and goal(s). I also usually inquire about what they do and do not understand about the topic I will be tutoring. Additionally, I might ask them to describe their favorite teacher, talk about their interests, or tell me a little about themselves. All of this information helps me to better tailor tutoring sessions to the student. After I've gathered this information, tutoring begins! For the first few sessions, I'll try one or two different teaching methods that I believe will cater to the student's learning style best. After the first few tutoring sessions, I'll usually ask the student about what their favorite/least favorite parts of the tutoring session were, which parts were the most helpful to them, and what they believe I could do better.
I have tutored peers in various subjects throughout my academic career and have always thoroughly enjoyed it. Additionally, I worked with a company called Qkids which allowed me to teach ESL to smaller children (aged 6 to 12) in China. This experience taught me different strategies to use in order to get a student's attention. Additionally, this job taught me how to work with people of different ages and how to recognize when a student is confused. Finally, I recently obtained my TEFL certificate. The TEFL class not only teaches me the technicalities of English grammar so that I can teach ESL, but it also offers advice and lessons for how to teach to people of different ages.
I don't have a standard price. I believe that education is highly valuable and powerful and that everyone has the right to be as well educated as possible. Thus, I set my price based on what the student can afford to pay. I do take into consideration the amount of time and effort I will probably have to devote to teaching a student; this consideration is reflected in my initial pricing. However, I am very flexible and understand that not everyone is made of money. For this reason, I like to discuss how much a student is willing and able to pay for lessons directly with the student. I will then tell them what I feel would be a fair price for each lesson; if they can't pay that amount, we can discuss further until we come upon a compromise.
I have mainly worked with students who are 18 years or younger. Occasionally, I have tutored adult students (mid- to late-fifties). However, because of my experience tutoring on a non-professional level throughout my academic career and my experience teaching ESL at my job with Qkids, I have found that I am more experienced in tutoring youth.
Recently, I had the opportunity to volunteer to teach ESL at an orphanage in Uruguay. This was such a rewarding experience for me as all of the children there were always excited to have visitors. Since the volunteer opportunity didn't have much structure to it, the volunteers weren't often provided with the time or resources to teach. Thus, I spent a lot of time with the children playing soccer, dancing, and drawing pictures (all while trying to incorporate some English into the activity). Although the job was tiring, I was always so happy to interact with the kids as I loved reminding them that they were important and making them feel heard and seen. It's an experience I believe I will always look back on fondly.
Be patient with yourself. Learning any language is difficult; Spanish is no different. Immersing yourself in Spanish media will help you immensely with your comprehension and speaking abilities. It will also introduce you to Latino/Hispanic culture and allow you the opportunity to hear Spanish spoken in different accents. Since understanding the culture is an important part of understanding and learning any language, reading books, watching movies, and keeping up with the news are all important activities that will aid in your understanding of Spanish. Additionally, try to make friends who are native Spanish speakers. Talk with them (in Spanish, if you can) to get a sense of their outlooks on the world. Having a friend who is a native Spanish speaker will allow you to have a go-to person when you have a question about the language and will also help you better understand and appreciate the Latino/Hispanic culture.