Christine’s current tutoring subjects are listed at the left. You
can read more about
Christine’s qualifications in specific subjects below.
I can help with ACT reading, writing, and the English grammar sections of this test. We utilize a student’s accumulative background knowledge as a baseline to build comprehension of classic literature, world events, and critical thinking. The development of inference, finding the main point, navigating figurative language, and logical reasoning along with test taking skills, higher-level vocabulary acquisition, and structural writing are also addressed to increase scoring and college readiness. Our first meeting is free. During this meet and greet session, we assess skills to develop a plan that fits the needs of an individual student. We also discuss goals, previous learning, time limitations, and an ACT reading, writing, and English program that also requires independent work between our formal sessions. I tutor test preparation as an ongoing process, which is dependent on the time left before the test and student commitment, rather than a quick fix for a higher score.
I have tutored individual students in this area, as well as 2 to 4 student groups, which lowers the per student rate.
The reading section of the ACT test measures reading comprehension that determines if a student is prepared for academic reading as a college freshman. The text passages offer differences between what is stated and what is suggested, which mandates inference and logic as the two skills necessary for this portion of the ACT. A student is given 35 minutes to complete 40 multiple-choice questions regarding four reading passages within Social Studies, Natural Sciences, Prose, and Humanities. As a junior or senior in high school, the structure of this test does not sound very difficult, but it can be very confusing because the questions require a higher level of critical thinking. Another difficulty lies within the broad subject base of these passages. For example, the Natural Science passage may be in Anatomy, Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Zoology etc. A student must utilize their accumulated knowledge and critical thinking skills within each reading passage to answer these multiple-choice questions. Test taking skills, as well as vocabulary acquisition are also integral components that need development for the ACT.
As your ACT reading tutor, I will focus on the development of these analytical skills to enhance reading comprehension. We will utilize real passages from each of the four subject bases as our venue for learning. We will also review vocabulary in context and test taking strategies that provide the best results for individual learners.
I have worked with individual students, as well as 2 to 4 student groups, which lowers the per student rate.
Many people think that art is an innate talent. Contrary to this line of thought is my belief that although some people are born with intrinsic artistic talent, drawing is a skill that can be learned and refined through authentic application. As a child, I loved to draw. My first attempt at college was as an art major. I took drawing, illustration, cartooning, and ink classes that helped me refine my skills and market myself as a black and white portrait artist. This marketable skill has served me well throughout my lifetime through the sales of portraits drawn from photographs. My recent artistic endeavor comes within the form of graphic novels from literature for my reading and ESL students. In the past, I have worked with a group of adolescents on a summer project that culminated with an exhibit of their work at our local public library and have offered portrait-drawing classes at my park district. I was not born with artistic talent, but was taught by some remarkably talented professors.
My specialty is working with graphite pencils and tortillions to create people portraits. I was taught quite a few tricks of the trade in school that have helped me take the frustration out of drawing early on in projects. I feel the joy in drawing is when the functional elements of a portrait or illustration are complete, such as size, proportions, placement, and authenticity. That is when the fun begins. These functional elements can be learned and with a little practice, they become a significant factor towards an artist’s repertoire of skills.
As your tutor, I will teach you these procedures, as well as help you hone your individual talents as an artist.
I have a Bachelor’s degree in English Language Learner studies and have been tutoring ESL to adolescents and adult learners for 5 years. Although learning for each student is different, I feel that ESL depends on Sheltered Content instruction, which focuses on visual, oral, and kinesthetic (active) scaffolding. I also utilize a student's native language for comprehension through language translating software to increase overall comprehension. I base instruction on scientific research and focus on the interests/needs of my students by preparing lessons that address goals set by individual learners. Some of these goals incorporate function and the authentic language needed within the structures of American culture. Alternate goals address the academic language needed for success in school. My experience and training in this area, along with my love of culture, have given me the teaching skills necessary for student success.
I have also developed a special program for English learners that give students the foundation they need for achievement in English as an additional language. This program focuses on phonemic awareness, decoding, pronunciation, reading fluency, and comprehension. I utilize the foundation presented within the Action Reading Program, with modifications for English learners. I feel that phonemic awareness and the physiology of speech are two baseline pivotal aspects of language acquisition.
Our first session is free. During this meet and greet hour, we will assess English reading, writing, speaking, and listening skills, talk about goals for learning, and distinguish if we are a good match as tutor and learner. Language acquisition is a very personal endeavor. Language risks are necessary for solid achievement, so I feel that building an environment of well-being and trust maintains consistent accomplishment. This first meeting will also help me write a plan for individual learners. Each learner maintains different strengths and needs, therefore, I offer this no cost session to begin our learning partnership towards stronger English language skills.
I have tutored individual learners within specific content and test preparation areas, as well as 2 to 4 student groups, which lowers the per student rate.
Grammar is one of the most difficult aspects of English. In school, students are required to understand grammatical forms and structures conducive to reading and writing academically. Often this type of learning is flooded with drills and rote memorization. Students have been taught these skills early in their academic careers, but knowing the rules of English grammar and utilizing them in context can be very confusing for many learners. For example, I took cooking in high school and with the instructor’s help, I did very well following a recipe and understanding ingredients, measurements, and timing. When I began cooking for myself, some of those early recipes did not turn out exactly as planned. As students enter high school and college, they are expected to write many academic papers. Taking the grammatical knowledge they learned in school and applying it to context can become a very difficult task.
Students need to connect grammatical form, meaning, and application naturally. One of the best ways to accomplish this skill is to utilize authenticity. We will use content that is pertinent to a student’s assignments in school or within student interest to strengthen English grammar. We will practice with real conversations and address grammar within reading, writing, and review that utilize English for authentic purposes.
We will also build a grammar notebook that students can utilize for future assignments.
We are never too old to learn phonics! Phonological awareness makes strong readers. I teach a curriculum that gives students the basic skills needed for a good reading foundation. This curriculum includes phonemic awareness, which is the study of all the sounds of the English language, combined with decoding, reading fluency, and comprehension. I am a firm believer that phonics instruction combined with a whole language approach gives students a great foundation in reading. I can incorporate reading materials that students are working on in school or books that interest the student. I have seen results in as little as three to six months. Students begin to discuss stories and cultivate their interests in books. Phonological awareness takes the stress out of reading and allows students to focus on academic content and critical thinking.
One of the biggest obstacles toward academic success is reading. If reading skills remain challenged, all educational activities suffer. Unfortunately, by the time students realize that the problem is reading they have slipped much farther behind their peers. A good reading program addresses phonics, phonemic awareness, comprehension, reading fluency, and high frequency words. These are the skills possessed by good readers. When students lack the very basic skills needed for reading comprehension, reading becomes an unpleasant task.
I have been tutoring a program for the past 5 years that helps struggling readers catch up to their classmates. I have seen students improve their reading skills within six months of weekly tutoring. The return on investment advances spelling, reading fluency, and comprehension. Half the battle is the phonemic awareness necessary to comprehend words that improve reading fluency, which lowers anxiety for struggling readers.
The curriculum I utilize is the Action Reading Program. It teaches students comprehension, spelling, decoding, reading fluency, and the phonemic awareness necessary for great readers. I have seen the rapid results of this program first-hand. I adapt instruction to the learning needs of each student; therefore, learning is dependent upon student attendance and the motivation to learn. I meet most of my students once a week for two-hour tutoring sessions. At this rate of instruction, the Action Reading Program should be completed in approximately six months and then we move on to reading and writing within interest based content.
The TOEFL IBT is a measure of academic English proficiency. Most colleges require this test for undergraduate and graduate admissions. This test may also be necessary for employment in professional fields. A higher test score equates to advanced opportunities for English language learners. Many universities require a minimum score in individual areas for admission. Understanding these requirements and the structure of the test are the first steps toward achievement.
The test is divided into four sections, which are reading, writing, listening, and speaking in English. We divide the test into each domain and focus on areas that require improvement. This familiarizes students with the structure of the test and shows us which areas need more attention. We learn and practice with academic materials and structures within the TOEFL. I also teach test-taking strategies appropriate for the TOEFL and supply materials for a student to utilize during and in between our tutoring sessions. Although we separate each section within each domain, I design lessons that integrate these skills throughout the test to provide students with opportunities to strengthen their English proficiency within all areas of the TOEFL. We utilize videos for listening, phonemic awareness and outlines for the speaking section, TOEFL reading passages, vocabulary acquisition, and also focus on English grammar through writing.
I have tutored individual learners and two to four student groups, which lowers the per student hourly rate.