Lodestar Tutors

Lodestar Tutors

5(4 reviews)
Offers online services
Offers online services


***99th percentile GRE and SAT scores***

***Ivy league undergraduate degree and graduate degree in Molecular Biology***

***Extraordinary at connecting and communicating***

When you're encountering challenging material for the first time, it can feel like being lost in the woods without a map. Rereading textbooks, memorizing notes, and rote repetition haven't been working. There is a different way! At Lodestar Tutors, we help you form lasting connections and create your own mental map of the material, which you will retain long past the day of your exam. We believe in active learning, engaging students in a give and take that we adapt in the moment to your specific learning style and knowledge gaps. Mistakes pave the road to success, and we create a safe environment to make them and learn from them, so that you build confidence and a strong foundation of knowledge.

Alicia Sponholz, founder of Lodestar Tutors, first encountered her talent for teaching as a young child. Witnessing a student's struggle transformed into understanding, delight, and curiosity remains her driving motive for doing this work. Through her education at Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology, Brown University, and The CUNY Graduate Center, Alicia developed her teaching skill and expanded her breadth of knowledge. Many clients have recognized that Alicia's unique value as a tutor lies in her ability to communicate, adapting her teaching style in the moment, and guiding students to form lasting connections with the material. Expertise in subject matter is necessary but not sufficient! What sets Lodestar apart is the way we use evidence-based practices to create a learning environment that promotes confidence and retention. Increased test scores and grades are the metrics we use to gauge our progress, but it is the joy of learning our students experience that we view as success.


Hired 7 times
1 employee
1 year in business
Serves West Swanzey , NH
Offers online services

Payment methods

Venmo, Paypal, Apple Pay, Google Pay, Zelle

Social media

Photos and videos

  • In the beautiful Monadnock Valley
  • Alma Ma
  • Lodestar Tutors flier
  • In the Shopper News
  • Recent review with a student I m
  • Recent review with a student I m

  • Reviews

    0 reviews

    sema M.

    Alicia has been a great help to my son! She is knowlegable, patient with him and as a teacher she has connected really well with him. His understanding and connection to Chemistry has greatly improved. Thank you for all you have done for him! We highly recommend her!!!
    ... Show more
    May 08, 2023
    Hired on Tutors

    brianna F.

    Alicia has been so helpful and insightful. She knows how to connect concepts and encourage learning. I have defiantly seen an improvement in my knowledge of Anatomy. Would recommend!
    ... Show more
    February 08, 2023

    Sanjeev M.

    Alicias ability to communicate sets her apart. There are a lot of smart people in the world, but few that know how to connect with individuals to convey their message. We are very grateful to have been introduced to her. My son Maxs confidence and enthusiasm about Chem have grown so much. Thank you Alicia for all you have done for him!
    ... Show more
    December 27, 2022

    Maya M.

    Alicia has been great, and
    Maya has shown
    improvement in her grades
    last semester since having her.
    Her warm and friendly style is
    just what Maya needs to make
    math not feel so intimidating.
    Weve loved having Alicia and
    would recommend her highly
    to anyone.
    ... Show more
    December 27, 2022

    Frequently asked questions

    I start with a free Zoom call so we can get to know each other and I can learn your goals. I'll begin to assess where your knowledge gaps are -- a process that continues as we work together -- and start working on a plan for how we can make strong connections to foundational knowledge that will close those gaps.
    Brown University dual Bachelor of Arts in Italian Studies and Comparative Literature: Literary Translation (Italian --> English.) Masters of Science in Cellular, Molecular, and Developmental Biology from the CUNY Graduate Center. Guest lecturer at the City College of New York in Biology 101 and Anatomy & Physiology laboratory instructor. Over a decade working with Varsity Tutors and Fresh Outlook Tutors (boutique Manhattan-based company) before venturing out on my own.
    At the moment I have openings in my schedule so I can offer math and science for $65/hour and $85/hour for test prep. Prices will not ever go up during the semester we meet, but will be subject to revision at the beginning of a new school year for K-12 students or semester for college students.
    I've been teaching since the first grade when I'd finish a problem set and my teacher would ask me to work with the students who hadn't completed theirs yet. I volunteered with developmentally disabled students in high school to improve their reading comprehension skills. While working on my graduate degree I found that I loved to engage college students in both lecture and laboratory classes, and was able to really connect with them using an affirmative, call-and-response teaching style. In preparing for graduate school, I tutored full time with Varsity and Fresh Outlook Tutors and expanded the range of subjects with which I had intensive experience.
    I've worked with students of many diverse ages and abilities, from K-12 to adult learners completing degrees for the first time. I have direct experience with students with mental health conditions who had to take time off from their educations and are seeking re-entry or ongoing support. Students seeking entry into competitive high school, college, and graduate programs have built their confidence significantly through working with me, yielding impressive and measurable results. If a student no longer needs my help I've done my job well!
    The school where I completed my graduate work, the City College of New York, has an adjoining specialized high school that NYC students can apply to enter. One of my students dreamed of going there, and was so excited to hear that he might be able to volunteer in an engineering lab in one of the college research groups. His motivation and dedication were both high, and we worked diligently to prepare for the Specialized High School Admissions Test. His mother recently emailed me: "I wanted to let you know that Daniel did very well on his SHSAT and received a letter of acceptance from HSMSE. We want to thank you so much for helping him achieve his goal!" I was delighted to learn that his hard work had paid off, and know he will have many successes to come.
    It's necessary that they know the material, but it isn't sufficient. Make sure the teacher is able to help you form deep, lasting connections that build on foundational knowledge you already have. Mnemonics can be helpful but memorization is never the best overall strategy; active learning using evidence-based techniques will lead to mastery of content and help you in achieving long-term objectives.
    Students should think about their long term objective, and ask how the teacher will support them in achieving it. What is the teacher's strategy? Do they know how to connect with the student in front of them, and can they scaffold their knowledge in a way that you will not only understand but be able to reproduce? Do you want to focus just on the material or would you like extra support with things like study skills and accommodations that may be available to you? What is your goal in this experience of working with a tutor, and will the person you choose to work with prioritize that and help you accomplish it?

    Services offered

    Test Prep Tutoring