Information About Peter - Saffron Walden tutor - (1 review)
This is how 3 referees rated Peter:
I am a recently retired Clinical Scientists (registered). I am a youthful 67 year old, married for 27 years with an 8 years old son! We are a non smoking family. My involvement with "mathematics / arithmetic", at various levels, dates back to when I left secondary school (Blackpool) in 1964 and worked for the Civil Service. During my 5 years as a Clerical Officer in accounts division, and passed two additional maths O’Levels, via evening classes, and playing bass guitar in local groups. I resigned to take a full time 1 year A’'Level course (Maths, Further Maths and Physics) and subsequently read for a Mathematics degree (Physics subsid.) at Nottingham University (1970-73). During this time, I had 3 vacation studentships with different departments of the Scientific Civil Service. After graduating, I worked for around 15 years as a computer programmer / analyst during which time I passed an HND in Computer Studies. Although I was 40 years old when I was made redundant from a communications company, I decide to make a significant career change and return to my "roots" and look for scientific work where my mathematical skills would be better used. After 2 years as a Medical Laboratory Scientific Officer in the lung function laboratory at the Royal Brompton, I had the tools and experience to apply for a research post in Paediatric Respiratory Medicine at the Royal Post Graduate Medical School (RPGMS, Hammersmith Hospital).
I retired in 2014 after 25 years as a researcher / Clinical Scientist at the RPGMS and Royal London. A large part of my research involved mathematical analysis of breathing patterns and flow-volume curves. This involved developing techniques and algorithms for alternative methods of assessing "lung function". I took evening classes obtaining several GCSEs and additional A' Levels in Biology, Chemistry and Statistics before reading for a part time M.Sc. in General Biochemistry and Molecular Biology at Kings College London. In 2005, my portfolio was reviewed by the Health Professions Council and I registered as Clinical Scientist, which is a protected title. In 2015, my application was accepted to become a STEM schools ambassador. The reason for the additional qualifications during my time in research was not career motivated; it was my passion for learning and the thrill of sitting examinations and testing myself. The main reason for offering private tuition is my love of teaching and that I miss my close involvement with the "sciences".
Although, I do not have formal teaching qualification and I only started offering private tuition at the beginning of 2015, I have tutored a range of tutees from Common Entrance Exam level to adult learners (one is aged 70!) including CGSE students for both Mathematics and Statistics. However, my "teaching" roles go back to 1973, post graduation. I taught maths to several friends’ children as well as adult friends / colleagues who needed to obtain better qualification. My research positions included teaching / lecturing roles at all levels from work experience pupils up to consultants, as well as giving invited talks and lectures on B.Sc. and M.Sc. courses. In the laboratory / clinics, I found particular pleasure explaining to children and parents the purpose of the tests / research and the "mathematics" behind the analysis and interpretation of the results. In my own time, I helped several long term inpatients with school work in science and others with projects related to the maths and biology of their respiratory problems.
As George Orwell never said “All tutees are not the same but some are more different than others”. I have a variety of approaches, depending on factors such as (i) whether the tutee needs teaching or revision; (ii) the number of lessons they can fit in before the exam; (iii) their strengths and weaknesses, as well as their interests; (iv) the length of the sessions 45-90 mins and (v) the work they are willing / keen to do between sessions.
However, there are aspects that are common to all tutees: I spend as long as necessary, with no charge, to clarify import issue such as (i) which board, level and paper they will be sitting; (ii) the text book they use and which parts of the syllabus have been covered and whether any topics need revising or explaining and (iii) wherever possible, obtaining suggestions and feedback from their teachers including where marks had been lost in recent exams.
Additionally, I offer the first lesson for free, as I have every confidence that tutee / families will wish to continue and this will cover the cost of purchasing my contact details.
Other aspects of my approach include (i) the tutee attempting appropriate questions / papers from other boards to make them “think outside the box” and be more prepared for questions that do not fit the usual mode; (ii) e-mailing questions of papers in advance of session to allow adequate time for preparation; (iii) feeding back how sessions have gone and suggestions for changes; (iv) moving up and down the difficulty ladder depending on the progress; (v) working on exam technique and teaching how to not misinterpret questions, sometimes, badly written; (vi) preparing tutees for difficult topics about to be taught at school, to ensure the tutee gets the most out of upcoming lessons and (vii) using examples from everyday life to demonstrate the use and usefulness of maths and statistics outside of the classroom.
I make extensive use of marking schemes and examiners reports to discuss how the tutee may have obtained the correct answer but lost marks by not showing the workings or even lost time by providing too much details and this has been very successful and interesting for the tutees.
Some of my feedback:
(i) As a Year 11 student, Peter has been providing me with extra mathematics tuition during the final months before my GCSE examinations, offering distinct, concise teaching within a relaxed, highly enjoyable and yet professional environment. As a mathematician, Peter has aided me in approaching mathematics from a somewhat more lateral perspective, exploring multiple methods that could be employed to solve a challenging question; a form of thinking that is seldom used within a typical school environment. Peter’s abundant, infectious passion for both his tuition and mathematics manifests itself within his unswerving support and guidance during our sessions together, delivering a uniquely engaging teaching environment within which to learn, but most importantly, to enjoy learning mathematics!"
(ii) Parent of a Year 11 school girl: Hello Peter, thank you for your follow up, your emails always have an interesting flair about them. We also enjoyed our meeting and Ebony particularly liked your relaxed approach to the subject, for that reason alone I think she would benefit from being able to ask questions without feeling awkward about what she doesn't understand, most importantly I agree with your 'spades a spade' philosophy in how to interpret the syllabus into the real world.
(iii) Teacher's reply to an e-mail from the mother of a Common Entrance school boy: Thank you for your email. I am pleased Edward has a good tutor and is happy doing extra Maths. The best paper to prepare Edward for our end of year test would be a practice SATs test as they follow a similar format to ours
(iv) A recent GCSE student, EDEXCEL Higher, via his mother: Peter, I obtained and A in my Stats paper and B in my maths paper and I was told by my teacher that it might be worth remarking, as I was only several marks away from the A Grade)
Consulting the 'breakdown' of my overall Mathematics grade, it appears as though I (thanks to your support) did exceptionally well within the non-calculator paper (the equivalent of a very high A/ very low A* in terms of marks), but it was simply a few questions at the end of the calculator paper (that seemed to baffle everyone, regardless of ability) that partially pushed my overall grade down.
Once again, thank you for all of your support and guidance; I certainly would not have been able to achieve my result within the NON-calculator paper, the paper that I claimed was more intimidating, without our sessions within the **Contact Detail Removed**. You have improved not only my proficiency, but also my confidence in Maths enormously and for that I cannot thank you enough.
(v) Father of a schoolgirl (EDEXCEL Higher): "E" did very well overall and passed all 13 ! In Maths she was one point off a B so of course that's a C. I think we will request a remark for the maths paper. Many thanks again for your help in the past, best wishes.
(vi) From the mum of an 11 yr old: My son enjoyed his tutoring with Peter. He made the sessions relaxed and enjoyable whilst getting the hard work done. The sessions were well planned and I receive good, detailed feed back after each session.
Additional Languages: Welsh
Availability: Weekends / Weekdays (all times)
References Available: Yes (✔ On File)
- University of London Kings College (1998) - M Sc General Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (Masters) (✔ On File)
- University of Nottingham (1973) - B Sc Honours Mathematics (Pass) (Bachelors) (✔ On File)
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