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Above all, I teach my students *how to learn languages*. Many people have a history of limited success with foreign languages, leading them to believe that they lack "talent" in that area. However, more often than not, the problem is simply that the language classes they previously took were not a good match for their learning style. My goal as a tutor is to help my students find the approach which works best for them as individuals.
My teaching of foreign languages is *always* with a view toward developing a general appreciation of and dexterity with language. For example, I want my students to learn to think in new ways; every language maps to certain patterns of thought, and it is more enriching to adapt oneself to those patterns than to think of a foreign language as something like an encoded form of English. I also work with my students on understanding the movements of the tongue and other speech organs--you might be surprised how noticeably you can improve your accent if you understand a few fundamental concepts!
My life of language learning began in 2005, when I undertook the independent study of Russian during my last year of high school. The next year, I entered university and tested into Third Year Russian, where I had the highest level of fluency in the class. After graduating in 2009, I resumed my exploration of independent language learning and have since attained skill ranging from "usable" to "fluent" in five more languages. (I've also studied a bit of 15+ others along the way, just for fun.) By this point, I know what it takes to teach yourself a language.
I tutored Russian in college, and from 2009-2012 I taught Latin, Old English, Spanish, and Russian at the K-8 level. In 2010, I wrote a piece for "The Polyglot Project: How to Learn Multiple Languages," and in 2013 I began providing private tuition in language learning. In 2014, I taught English at the Redemptorist Vocational School for the Disabled in Pattaya, Thailand, and gave a seminar titled "How to Learn Any Language (especially Thai)" for the non-Thai-speaking staff and volunteers at the foundation.
I am currently spending most of my study time on Arabic and Mandarin.
Excellent: Russian, Spanish
Very good: German, French
Okay: Thai, Farsi
2008: J. Thomas Shaw Award for Excellence in Russian
2008: ACTR National Russian Essay Contest, Level 4 of 4: 3rd place
2012: UW-Madison German for Reading Knowledge Exam: High Pass
2012: UW-Madison French for Reading Knowledge Exam: Advanced
2014: ACTFL German Oral Proficiency Interview: Intermediate High
I hold a BA in Russian (with comprehensive honors) from UW-Madison. In addition, I am a recipient of the J. Thomas Shaw Award for Undergraduate Excellence in Russian and in 2008 placed 3rd in the ACTR National Post-Secondary Russian Essay Contest, level 4 of 4.
Great tutor! — With a family member now living in South America I wanted to become proficient in Spanish so bought a textbook and started learning on my own. I put quite a bit of time in but hit a wall and that’s when I went looking for a tutor. In 10 sessions I’ve quadrupled what I had learned in months and months on my own. Edward understands ‘learning’ very well, in addition to being patient and good at expla ...
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