Dan S.

Santa Monica, CA


New England Prep School & Liberal Arts College Triple Major

In-person lessons


Send a message explaining your needs and Dan will reply soon.

Response time:

Contact Dan

About Dan

Hi, thanks for reviewing my tutor profile!

I am not your typical English/French/Literature tutor because I have never taught at a school, but I did ace my SAT verbals and I graduated with honors from Middlebury, a well respected East Coast liberal arts college. (That's where Pulitzer Prize-winning American poet, Robert Frost started his prestigious Bread Loaf School of English for writers!)

Prior to that, I attended a top-tier prep school called Hotchkiss where I went to class six days a week and made Dean's List every semester. Hotchkiss instilled a lifelong love of learning that I carried with me to Middlebury where I triple majored in English, French & Film. But despite a dedicated academic acumen, my goal was never to earn good grades. My objective was always to accumulate knowledge and then apply that information to real-life experiences.

A good example of how I did that was junior year of college when I applied to study filmmaking and specifically, La Nouvelle Vague ("The French New Wave") at the Sorbonne in Paris. Middlebury rejected my application on the grounds that the course credits wouldn't transfer. Instead of letting that hold me back, I was the first American in twelve years to be accepted into the University of York's elite English program. There, I wrote a thesis on "The Modern Allegory of Shakespearean Literature" which more than satisfied Middlebury's course credits. But I was not satisfied; I wanted to do more than just complete a requirement. I wanted to produce and direct my first feature film - even if I was in a foreign country! So instead of taking the whole term to write my thesis, I wrote it in the first three weeks and then left Britain for France anyway. Middlebury was unaware, but that didn't matter because by the time I returned to the U.S., I had graduated York's English program with top honours AND I had a feature film on DVD. The important take-away from this experience was that I set clear academic and real-life goals then set a clear path to achieve them.

Prior to graduating my senior year at Middlebury, I was required to combine my joint majors into a thesis project. I chose to adapt the New York Times Bestselling novel, MARKER by Robin Cook. Known as "the Michael Crichton of medical thrillers," I connected with Robin and together, we turned his book into a screenplay. But before coming to work in Hollywood, I wanted to accomplish one more thing; I really wanted to complete a second feature film in a totally different genre. Anticipating the work-load would be immense, I wrote the screenplay with Robin during the summer so by the time classes started again in September, I would already be finished with my thesis project nine months ahead of schedule. That gave me the time to complete my graduation requirements and what would become my second feature film. Once again, goals surpassed!

So why go into so much detail about my personal experience? How does this apply to you as a student? The simple fact is that if you set clear goals you can and will achieve them. It's important for you to learn to love what knowledge can achieve rather than just what "facts" you need to know for a test. Knowledge is cumulative and life is full of tests and quizzes every day, so I will help you learn to love to be intellectually stimulated rather than simply how to memorize the answers to test questions. And guess what? You'll have fun doing it!

I learned to speak French when I was in second grade and studied it through college. I have been to France multiple times and have learned first-hand that retaining a language isn't just about memorizing vocabulary or understanding grammar, it's about living the words!

I will help you learn to speak conversationally, thinking critically about different ways to say what you mean even if you don't have the exact words to speak your mind. Language is a fluid form of expression so together, I'll help you feel confident that you are articulating your ideas regardless of your level of proficiency.

Lit: I have an extensive knowledge of American, English and French literature.
Writing/Proofreading: I have written two dozen screenplays - the first rule about good writing is REwriting!
Vocabulary: Articulating complex ideas isn't complicated. The superfluous use of "big words" only subverts one's desire to clearly communicate simple concepts ;)

Feel free to connect and ask me questions about anything you're working on. Even if we don't actually work together, I'm happy to consult and provide whatever insight I can to help you resolve your academic goals!
Hi, thanks for reviewing my tutor profile!

I am not your typical English/French/Literature tutor because I have never taught at a school, but I did ace my
Read more

24 hours notice required
Travel Radius
Travels within 5 miles of Santa Monica, CA 90403
In-person lessons
Literature, Proofreading, Vocabulary, Writing
Elementary Education:

Approved subjects are in bold.

Approved subjects

In most cases, tutors gain approval in a subject by passing a proficiency exam. For some subject areas, like music and art, tutors submit written requests to demonstrate their proficiency to potential students. If a tutor is interested but not yet approved in a subject, the subject will appear in non-bold font. Tutors need to be approved in a subject prior to beginning lessons.

Hourly rate

Standard Hourly Rate: $49.00

Cancellation: 24 hours notice required

Travel policy

Dan will travel within 5 miles of Santa Monica, CA 90403.