A photo of Becky, a tutor from School of the Art Institute of Chicago

Becky

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I am a private English tutor and academic life coach specializing in reading comprehension, writing strategies, standardized tests, and organization and study skills. I have over twenty years of experience including teaching with Florida International University, University of Miami Study Skills and Test Preparation Program, The School of the Art Institute of Chicago, The Institute for Reading Development, English as a Second Language abroad, public and private schools, and non-profit social service organizations including homeless shelters and hospitals. I have been a self-employed educational consultant for the last thirteen years and developed several unique programs including creative and academic writing, arts and healing, test taking strategies and executive functioning – much of which I am in the current process of codifying in instruction manuals. My diversity of experiences teaching across three continents with diverse population of age and gender has made me extremely culturally sensitive . All of this enables me to connect deeply and quickly with students at their level without preconceived notions. Over the course of my teaching career I have logged in over 26, 000 contact hours reaching over 6,000 clients. Through all of these experiences I have come to understand the value of a holistic approach to education.

Succeeding in school requires more than a review of the rules of grammar and an approach to standardized test taking, but also includes coaching, vision building, and stress management. More importantly it requires motivating, understanding, and caring for each student so he or she can develop his or her unique abilities with confidence.

Over the years, I have studied and developed an approach to teaching skills in a way that engages my students at their level and a supplementary approach of academic life coaching designed to inspire students to reach their potential. With tutoring and coaching, I also offer the optional, supplementary practice of creative expression, meditation and mindfulness, and relaxation strategies. While some students do not require or wish for such interventions, those that do can experience a benefit that goes beyond the test or project will help create a pattern of success for a lifetime.

I am not a therapist, yet as an educator I recognize the need to understand how internal forces affect external performance. I seek to teach students methods to overcome obstacles to their success in the broadest way possible given their unique needs and challenges.
My practice developed steadily over the years by word of mouth with students especially of the ‘orchid type’: highly sensitive, creative, gifted, often with learning differences or challenges. An ‘orchid type’ student generally requires the right kind of support and guidance. These special kids needed special methods and so I have developed an approach that goes beyond “the tricks to the test” or “ even the skills for the 21 first century.”

My approach uses the crisis of the course, the SAT, or the college application essay as a pivotal moment in a young adult’s life to teach them coping mechanisms, skills, and confidence that will last a life time. Having the gift of working with the tender kids and the diversity of working with so many different kinds of students, enables me to connect quickly and deeply motivate any student.

As a life-long lover of learning, I have an eclectic educational background. I hold an MA an have completed numerous courses in educational strategy, reading and ESL instruction, mainstream and positive psychology, coaching, hypnosis, and art therapy. I am currently enrolled in a Masters in Mental Health Counseling program. Because of this non-traditional education I have a uniquely creative and humanistic approach that is based on human potential development. My approach is individualized, positive, and energetic.

I believe that all young adults can succeed and am dedicated wholly to helping students with programs that are tailored completely to their particular skills and needs . I have a true passion for my work that is often deeply transformative.

Becky’s Qualifications

Education & Certification

Undergraduate Degree: School of the Art Institute of Chicago - Bachelors, Fine Art

Graduate Degree: Florida International University - Masters, Fine Art

Hobbies

Creative writing, yoga, and hiking


Q & A

What is your teaching philosophy?

I am a provider of holistic educational solutions. The educational crisis for a child or an adult represents a unique opportunity for personal growth. I combine techniques from popular psychology, cognitive psychology, teaching methodology, coaching, healing arts, and personal development in order to help students meet their immediate concerns of turning in papers and passing exams. But I also believe that the outcome of this work is more than a score: it is part of building a long-term vision of success. Succeeding in school requires more than knowing the rules of math and grammar or preparing for upcoming standardized tests. Academic success includes coaching, vision building, and stress management. More importantly, students require motivation, understanding, and care so that they can develop their own unique abilities with confidence. Over the years, I have created an approach to teaching skills in a way that engages my students at their unique levels of engagement, as well as a supplementary approach of academic life coaching designed to inspire students to reach their potentials. I am not a therapist; yet, as an educator, I recognize the need to understand how internal forces affect external performance. I teach students the appropriate methods to overcome the obstacles to their success given their unique needs and challenges. I provide an array of services that the student can choose from depending on his or her interest or familiarity. I also, of course, welcome the opportunity to meet with you to discuss how I can tailor my programs to best meet your needs.