Johnston Education & Communications

Johnston Education & Communications

5.0 (10)
1 employee
12 years in business

About this tutor

My service stands out because I believe in personalizing my lessons for each student's needs at any given time. I spend a great deal of time preparing lessons to ensure that they are on point, engaging, and at an appropriate level for each student. Online lessons require lots of prep to make sure there is no down time and that they are interactive, as needed. I gather and disseminate lots of information to make sure parents/guardians are clear about goals and methods. 

I left a successful writing and journalism career to teach and tutor because, after spending three years as an instructor-in-residence in a gifted jr. high program, I realized there is no higher calling than an engaged, effective educator.

I enjoy watching students reach mastery of their lessons, and I enjoy helping them stretch their minds to get to the next level of accomplishment. Every student has a unique way of learning, and I enjoy the challenge of figuring out best methods to address those individual pathways. 

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Minneapolis, MN 55441
Email verified
Phone verified

10 Reviews


  • Madeline Warshaw

    Mrs. Johnston is an amazing teacher and mentor who truly invests in every student she takes under her very apt wings. I am so grateful for her mentoring in my life! She always has an answer or a plan or a new way of looking at things and teaches with a healthy dose of levity, joy, and belly laughter. She'll hold you to high expectations, and you'll enjoy it!

  • Vicki Sullivan

    Brenda is an amazing tutor. She had a contagious energy from the moment my son and I met her. She helped alleviate our stress immediately. She is very quick to learn “the whole picture”. Brenda’s passion, intelligence and thoroughness helped my son in so many ways. My daughter even asked to work with her on her college essays. Very pleased with her services, she’s one of the best!

  • Hannah Boggess

    Mrs. Johnston is an exceptional educator, but first and foremost, she is an advocate for her students. She takes her time to get to know each student on an individual level — their strengths, their goals, their sites of growth — and caters the way she teaches to support and empower her students. In every interaction, Mrs. Johnston believes in and fights for her students: what they need, how they can thrive, and the structures they need to be the best version of themselves as learners and as people. Having known Mrs. Johnston for more than a decade now, I can confidently say that her role as a teacher profoundly impacted the trajectory of my educational experience and life outside of the classroom. I feel wildly fortunate to have encountered her expertise as an educator, mentor, advocate, and friend.

  • April Chung

    I was fortunate enough to have met Mrs. Johnston in my adolescent years as the gifted & talented coordinator. She is an exceptional educator who strategically developed personalized solutions for all her students after assessing the needs and talent of each individual. The differential value that she added to my academic career helped to unlock the unique potential that I held. Any student would be lucky to have Mrs. Johnston as their instructor.

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What is your typical process for working with a new student?

I begin by having a conversation with the guardian and/or student, depending on student's age. We discuss goals, present needs, interests, study habits and their expectations of a tutor. We then decide if I am a good match for the family. If so, we discuss schedules, fees and cancellation policy. 

We set our first lesson and work on homework or supporting lessons. I constantly gauge mastery of topic and emotional health of the student. We work on pacing and developing skills to enable the student to work independently until our next session. I provide multimedia lessons to engage students and enrich lessons, and I spend a tremendous amount of time in lesson prep and followup. 

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

--I have a B.S. in Journalism and Political Science.  --I have 25+ years of writing experience as a journalist and corporate communications writer.                    --I was an instructor-in-residence for a gifted & talented curriculum at Hopkins Jr. High in Minnetonka, MN.                                                  --I taught high school ELA at a private school in Minneapolis, MN
--I have successfully tutored for more than 10 years.      
--I completed training at MN Reading Corps to coach K-3 students in phonics and reading. 

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

$60/hour, depending upon frequency of lessons needed, or number of students in same family who need tutoring. 

How did you get started teaching?

My daughter's principal offered me a role as instructor-in-residence for a jr. high gifted program.  I enjoyed it so much that I acquired credentials to continue teaching and tutoring. 

What types of students have you worked with?

I have worked with Kindergartners through Doctoral candidates. I have worked with gifted students and those with significant IEPs. I have worked with students for whom English is a second language. 

Describe a recent event you are fond of.

I have a student who excels in math and struggles in writing. I recently developed a color-coded formula to help my student learn the concept of "show, don't tell," and that was the key that unlocked the concept for him. 

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

Make sure your candidate has extensive experience teaching a broad range of types of writing. You should expect your tutor to ask a lot of questions before you hire him or her, and you should expect your tutor to welcome any questions or feedback. 

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

You should be able to answer: What do I need help doing? Learning concepts or practicing example questions? What type of learner am I? What was it about a favorite teacher that helped me most?

Services offered

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