Since 2005 I have been tutoring English, ESL and reading and writing skills at Oakland Community College. My students have invariably given me high marks on the required tutor evaluations. One of my first students was a woman from China who, after passing her TOEFL, returned and gave the arm pumping gesture, saying, “You POWER teacher!” Another recent Arabic student also paid me a sincere and relevant compliment. After several attempts at pronouncing his name, Ghassom, he wrote on his tutor evaluation, “She is the first American to pronounce my name correctly!” I establish a rapport with my students; they are comfortable with my tutoring.
I have a B.S. in English and social studies from Wayne State University. I started teaching ESL when I lived in California. At that time I was the administrative assistant to the president of an electronics company. This was a Japanese-dominated company, and the assemblers in the work room spoke very little English. As an English major, I started an ESL class during the lunch period. This was very successful and many of the workers found their communication skills much improved and were able to become more friendly with the non-Japanese workers.
I have always been a devotee of the English language and find its history and genealogy immensely fascinating. Speakers of English enjoy a language that can convey ideas with great specificity - our word choices are great and multi-national, and I try to impart some of this love for the language to my students.
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