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Gil Z.

MIT Grad with "No Fear" Approach to Technical Topics

Oakland, CA (94610)

Travel radius
14 miles
Hourly fee
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It's much harder to learn something when you don't care about the topic.

That's why I've always approached learning as two step process.

The first step is getting to the "hmm!" moment -- that moment when you realize that the particular topic you're studying really does matter. It has applications in the real world. It's useful. Your interest is piqued.

The second step is getting to the "aha!" moment -- the moment when you've broken down a topic into its individual, understandable pieces and can put them all together to solve the problem you've been working on.

I do my best to go through both steps with my students. You can't force passion and enthusiasm, but you can develop it when you have a better idea of how the topic you're studying applies to the real world.

I focus on technical topics (math, biology, chemistry, physics, and economics), and I especially enjoy teaching hands-on topics that aren't covered in most high school curricula, including electronics (Arduino) and programming (Scratch, for younger students; Python, for those just coming in to programming; and Objective C -- for making iPhone and iOS apps in general -- for more advanced learners). I prefer to work with students from middle school through high school, but I'm happy to work with students outside this range on a case-by-case basis.

In my spare time, I've taught electronics and Arduino at the East Bay Mini Maker Faire, at the Exploratorium's Open Make, and at the Crucible in Oakland. I co-founded and help run Workshop Weekend, a Bay Area weekend program designed to give kids and young adults hands-on experience in topics not typically covered in schools, with workshops ranging from robot building to cheesemaking, and from wearable electronics to 3D printing!

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Gil’s subjects

Algebra 1, Algebra 2, Calculus, Geometry, Prealgebra, Precalculus, SAT Math, Trigonometry
English, ESL/ESOL, Grammar, Proofreading, Public Speaking, SAT Reading, SAT Writing, Vocabulary, Writing
Biology, Chemistry, Physics
C, Computer Programming, Computer Science, HTML, Python
Chinese, ESL/ESOL, Romanian, Spanish
Elementary Education:
Elementary Math, Grammar, Vocabulary
Economics, Marketing, Public Speaking
Algebra 1, Algebra 2, Biology, Calculus, Chemistry, Economics, English, ESL/ESOL, Geometry, Physics, Prealgebra, Precalculus, SAT Math, SAT Reading, Spanish, Writing
Test Preparation:
College Counseling, PSAT, SAT Math, SAT Reading, SAT Writing
Corporate Training:
Chinese, College Counseling, Economics, ESL/ESOL, Grammar, HTML, Proofreading, Public Speaking, Spanish


I studied Chinese for two years in college. After the first year, I began to lose interest in the textbooks we were using to study, and I decided to supplement my classes on my own. I went on a buying binge, purchasing my favorite films and young adult novels dubbed and translated into Chinese and having them shipped to my dorm room!

Chinese is a difficult language, but things will go much faster and be less painful if you have source material that's fun and that you're interested in. I'm happy to work with you to find interesting source material and to help you work through it!

I spent a year living in Beijing after college, where I solidified my speaking and reading abilities.

Computer Programming

I've been programming since middle school, when I was introduced to "Scheme" through a summer program. I worked through JavaScript in high school, and moved on to study Java formally in college. Since then, I've expanded my toolkit to include C, PHP, and Python.

In a formal setting, I've taught basic C for Arduino programming through Workshop Weekend and the Crucible in Oakland.

Programming is fun -- it doesn't matter what language you get started in; all that matters is that you're working on a project that deeply interests you!


In college, I took undergraduate-level courses focused purely on marketing, including "Marketing Management" and "People and Organizations;" these gave me a solid footing in the fundamentals from both an applied as well as a theoretical point of view.

I later took several graduate-level MBA courses, such as "New Enterprises," which focused strongly on applying marketing techniques.

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M.I.T. (Massachusetts Institute of Technology)

He has your back! — Gil tutored my college son with Asperger's at the tail end of his marketing class when he was at the brink of failing. Gil patiently taught him the concepts and my son said he felt very comfortable with Gil (that's rare coming form him). My son has had multiple tutors from WyzAnt since high school. But Gil was the only one whom I felt really cared about helping my son pass. He emailed me personall ...

— Daniel, Manhattan Beach, CA on 6/11/14

Hourly fee

Standard Hourly Fee: $70.00

Cancellation: 24 hours notice required

Travel policy

Gil will travel within 14 miles of Oakland, CA 94610.

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Usually responds in about 46 minutes

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