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Kendra

I’m from Los Angeles, California. In 2014, I graduated from Duke University, where I earned a bachelor’s degree in International Comparative Studies and toiled as a pre-med student. I spent my four years working as a writing advisor for fellow undergraduates, helping them to plan, draft and refine their papers. I also served as an African history and conflict analysis tutor for Duke’s athletic department, and volunteered as an ESL tutor for local Latino immigrants and their children. The day after I graduated, I moved to Vilnius, Lithuania, where I worked as a caretaker in a home for children with special needs, and independently crafted private, personalized ESL lessons for students and professionals of all ages. Now I’m back in LA and am hoping to share what I’ve learned from all these experiences with you!

I’m a committed, experienced tutor who is passionate about writing and the English language in general. I know that many students perceive writing as the bane of their existence, but it certainly doesn’t have to be! I’ve developed a few simple strategies for concise, effective writing that make the process a lot more manageable. I’m especially enthusiastic about helping students with this subject because developing the ability to communicate clearly will benefit them far beyond their high school English classes. Regardless of the subject being tutored, I am eager to relay the critical thinking and test- taking strategies that I developed at Duke and that I wish I would have had in my learning arsenal much sooner. I am confident that by sharing what I’ve learned as both a student and tutor, I can help my tutees reach their full potential."

Undergraduate Degree:

 Duke University - Bachelors, International Comparative Studies

SAT Verbal: 740

SAT Writing: 750

SAT Subject Test in Literature: 710

SAT Subject Test in Biology E/M: 700

SAT Subject Test in Spanish with Listening: 760

Books, travel, nature walks & taco trucks

College English

High School English

Homework Support

Other

Study Skills

Study Skills and Organization

What is your teaching philosophy?

I believe that the most effective learning takes place when students are sincerely interested in the material at hand. I always take the time to get to know my students so that I can present lessons in the most relevant, engaging way possible.

What might you do in a typical first session with a student?

I always start my first session by asking a few questions about the student's personal interests, goals, strengths and challenges. This allows me to phrase difficult concepts in terms that they'll understand, and to start developing a long-term strategy for their academic success.

How can you help a student become an independent learner?

Empowering independent learning is my ultimate goal. To do so, I give my students ample time to think through questions on their own. I also encourage them to search for and identify errors in their work. I have found that although it may seem daunting at first, these strategies help students to become calm, clear thinkers who aren't afraid of a challenge.

How would you help a student stay motivated?

I help students stay motivated by pointing out the broader use of seemingly tedious assignments, and by encouraging them to create and remember their long-term goals.

What strategies have you found to be most successful when you start to work with a student?

Experience has shown me that creating a rapport with students is one of the keys to successful tutoring. I have found that students are much more willing to voice their questions and concerns when they feel that I am their educational ally, rather than merely another pedant. Additionally, getting to know my tutees on a more personal level enables me to frame ostensibly difficult or uninteresting material in clear, relatable terms.

How do you build a student's confidence in a subject?

Asking students to teach you what they've learned about a topic is a great way to reinforce their understanding and bolster their confidence. Being able to clearly explain a concept is a sign of mastery, and if they can express their knowledge of a subject to me during a tutoring session, they will be able to provide the same service for themselves when they encounter a challenging question on an exam.

How do you evaluate a student's needs?

Because I have spent so many years working as a tutor, I am extremely familiar with the most common challenges for students. If I am working with a new student, I like to begin by reviewing their past assignments in order to get a sense of their skill level and to identify trends in the feedback they've received from their teachers.

How do you help students who are struggling with reading comprehension?

I encourage students to identify the main idea of the text and to focus on what they do understand. By helping them learn about standard paragraph structures, I am able to help them see past confusing details and hone in on the central message, which enables them to make logical inferences that will lead to the correct answer.