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Information About Laura - Edinburgh tutor -

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This is how 2 referees rated Laura:

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Subjects Taught

Maths

Hourly Rate
Primary £30.00

English

Hourly Rate
Primary £30.00
Secondary £30.00
GCSE £35.00
A-Level £35.00

English (Foreign Language)

Hourly Rate
Primary £30.00
Secondary £30.00
GCSE £30.00
A-Level £30.00
Casual Learner £20.00

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Personal Description:

Fully qualified, dedicated, experienced, ‘knowledgeable’, ‘friendly’, ‘encouraging’, ‘approachable’ and ‘organised’.

Born in 1988 to Scottish/ English parents, I was brought up in Yorkshire and went on frequent trips to the Scottish Borders to see family. I was schooled at my local primary and subsequently gained an academic and music scholarship to Oundle School, Peterborough. I went on to study French and German Language and Literature at The Queen’s College, Oxford (University) and was fortunate to spend a year abroad in Lyons, France during this time. There I taught English at one of the oldest Lycées and had an exhilarating time discovering what it takes to make learning fun (for everyone!). I soon found that careful (student-centred) planning, encouragement and pace are key components of effective teaching. Naturally self-critical, I quickly got into my current habit of constantly evaluating my teaching in order to improve.

Besides my first degree, I have a PGCE in teaching (Primary 5-11) from Goldsmiths University, London. I am proud of the fact that I was graded ‘Outstanding’ for my teaching in a challenging South London school. I also have a CELTA qualification which qualifies me to teach English as a foreign language; I also teach teenagers in a private English Language School and this informs my tutoring work.
The daughter of a bookseller, I (literally) grew up around books and nothing gives me more pleasure than discovering, or rediscovering a word or a literary world. As a tutor, I want to inspire children to read widely and to care about language. Constantly on the lookout for new children’s titles, I have compiled age-appropriate book recommendations (some of) which have been published in local magazines.

In 2017, I was awarded full Qualified Teacher Status by the Scottish Department of Education in recognition of my (8+ years) teaching experience. This means that I can continue to work in schools in Scotland, but I prefer to focus my efforts on tutoring. All children love learning when they are well taught and I find tutoring immensely exciting and rewarding. As a tutor, I enjoy focussing on each child’s specific educational needs and well-being, without distraction. As a perfectionist, I value the luxury a tutor has of doing their best for each individual child.

Tutoring Experience:

Following my degree at Oxford University, I worked as an English Language teacher in Edinburgh and then as a teaching assistant at a top London prep school where I led booster groups in Maths and English. After my PGCE, I worked as a school teacher delivering all subjects to children from 5 -11 years. In my final role, I planned and delivered lessons to almost every year group in a primary school in Beckenham. My experience of different types of schools across London (independent and state, many ‘outstanding’ ), allowed me to gain first-hand experience of the most up-to-date teaching methods and approaches at the time. I also benefitted from having many inspirational mentors who improved my teaching and taught me new strategies.

In my final year in London, I tutored a boy at a top London prep school on an (almost) daily basis and managed to increase his confidence substantially. Since 2016, I have been building up my tutoring portfolio and have recently had success teaching English and English Literature to older children (up to age 18).
Since moving to Scotland, I have observed and taught in Scottish primary schools and in the independent sector in order to gain first-hand experience of the expectations and curriculum here.

Tutoring Approach:

I consider thorough planning absolutely essential. Before the first session I like to discuss the child’s precise needs with parents. The first hour will usually involve an informal assessment and feedback (to a parent). Any additional information parents can give me about the child (self-esteem, academic progress and difficulties to date etc.) is invaluable.
By playing to the child's strengths and through constant encouragement, I hope to either hone or develop greater confidence and a lasting enjoyment of the subject(s). Independence and curiosity are encouraged as well as a sense of discipline and responsibility. I try to foster a setting in which the child is in control of his or her learning and takes responsibility for it. My teaching is completely child-centred (I try hard not to talk too much, rather listen!) and at primary level a session will typically involve a series of activities, games, or carefully selected problems. I use many sources (educational websites, my own collection of new and old text books etc.) and my own imagination in order to find ideas and always come equipped with all necessary resources.

Maths

I follow the ‘concrete-pictorial- abstract’ progression as all good schools do. Younger children and children who are struggling usually require hands-on experience of mathematical concepts. At this stage I use traditional props such as unifix cubes, dienes, flashcards, abacus etc. and also real artefacts (shells, beads, tape measures etc.) At present, I am interested in the Shanghai Method of Maths teaching which is the result of extensive research by experts in this field; it has transformed children’s attainment in Maths across the globe. A recent course demonstrated ways in which Maths can be made visual, accessible and enjoyable. Thus children are more likely to become mathematicians with a solid understanding of the key concepts needed for problem solving.

When teaching more advanced children I use a range of renowned educational publishers (Schofield and Sims, Collins, Maths No Problem etc.). A great variety of educational websites such as Nrich Maths (for problem solving) help me to vary my teaching. I also refer to materials used in UK schools such as the Maths Mastery publication (available online). This document outlines ways in which a child should be able to apply learning at each level in order to solve problems.

National 5 English (Literature and Language)

I have two main aims at this level: One is to encourage my tutees to become more critical readers. And much is done to develop close reading skills and a deeper awareness of the range of literary devices at a writer’s disposal. Crucially, I encourage children to read widely in order to express themselves more fully. I also help children develop their writing by showing them how to experiment with language; carefully chosen words have greater impact.

Tutor Resources: (free to download)

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Native Language: English (British)
Additional Languages: French, German
Availability: Weekends / Weekdays (all times)
References Available: Yes (✔ On File)

Qualifications:

  • Goldsmiths University (2013) - Primary teaching (PGCE) (✔ On File)
  • Oxford University (2010) - BA (Bachelors) (✔ On File)
  • English Language Centre York (2008) - CELTA (School) (✘ Not On File)

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