Over 1000 tutoring hours

Lisa M.

Sunnyvale, CA


4th-8th English and math. Discount for IEPs.

Background check passed as of 1/21/13
5.0 average from 323 ratings
Lisa made language arts fun!
— Stacia, Sunnyvale, CA on 6/3/14

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University of Melbourne (Australia)
English, History, Law
University of Melbourne (Australia)
Michigan State University College of Education


University of Melbourne (Australia) (English, History, Law)

University of Melbourne (Australia) (MBA)

Michigan State University College of Education (Other)

About Lisa

I teach students, not subjects: I treat my students as unique individuals and find how each one best learns. I believe all students can learn, if they are taught with patience, humor, and a variety of approaches. My first goal is to give your child confidence, then build on his or her successes.

I have taught in the classroom (4th - 7th), in homeschooling situations (3rd - 9th), and I tutor students from 3rd to adult. I have worked successfully with gifted children and children and adults with learning difficulties, and many in-between. I teach all core subjects to homeschool students through middle school, and I tutor all core subjects plus study skills. I have been teaching common core in homeschool situations for years.

I love to learn, as evidenced by my University qualifications in four different fields. Recently, I completed a graduate certificate in educational technology, and I am excited about the new possibilities for learning that now exist. I am humbled to work with children who struggle in school, and to see them become happy about school, again. I am equally thrilled to see all students, whatever their level, grow in confidence and skill.

You need to choose your tutor wisely, just as I need to choose the students I believe I can most assist. I offer a free first session, where we can learn about each other (except for test prep). I look forward to meeting you.
I teach students, not subjects: I treat my students as unique individuals and find how each one best learns. I believe all students can learn, if they are taught with patience, humor, and a variety of approaches. My first goal is to give your child confidence, then build on his or her successes.

I have taught in the classroom (4th -
Read more

8 hours notice required

30% discount for students with an IEP.

Travel Radius
Travels within 10 miles of Sunnyvale, CA 94087
Background Check: Passed

"Lisa made language arts fun!"

- Stacia, Sunnyvale, CA on 6/3/14

"Miracle Worker"

- Kate, Los Altos, CA on 10/31/13

"A+ Tutor"

- Beau, San Jose, CA on 3/1/12
Algebra 1,
Elementary Math,
ACT English, English,
Literature, Vocabulary, Writing
Test Preparation:
ACT English, CBEST,
Social Studies
Special Needs:
Elementary Education:
Elementary (K-6th),
Elementary Math,
Elementary Science,
Study Skills,

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.


ADD and ADHD are diagnostic labels. They are not in themselves a tutoring plan. As a tutor I work with "active" students, whether officially diagnosed with ADD/ADHD or not. I use a multi-sensory approach with these learners. I understand that kids who are active are likely to be kinesthetic learners. That is, they need to move to learn. I aim to teach these students a number of different ways to learn, many involving movement. The goal is to help your child become an independent learner by teaching him/her how to appropriately include movement in his/her studies, and how to control the impulse towards movement at inappropriate times.

Algebra 1

I teach Algebra 1 according to the California standards. We can work from any textbook. I will structure lessons to be both conceptual and hands-on. I have taught 4th - 7th grade math, and understand where many students "miss" key concepts that they need in algebra 1. Algebra can be especially difficult for highly kinesthetic learners, who prefer to think in 3D and get lost in symbols on the page. For these students I do turn algebra into a 3D exercise, where they can touch and move objects, and literally "grasp" the concepts.


For aspiring Californian teachers and Substitutes, the CBEST is the first qualification you need. I took the CBEST in one sitting, although you can take each section in a separate sitting. I can teach you what you need to know, as this test is as much (or more) about "knowing the test" as it is about knowing the subject matter of the test. There are specific terms and procedures used in CBEST reading comprehension. There is a very well-defined response pattern required for the essays. The math section covers elementary math that you possibly have not reviewed for years (because, unlike 4th graders, you don't have to do long division every day!). I can guide you to a thorough understanding of what the CBEST test is looking for.


It's high school entrance exam time! These common tests, widely used by the Catholic schools, and others, are easy once you understand what the questions really mean. I can help your child review the basic concepts of the verbal and quantitative sections of these tests. Importantly, I can teach your child many strategies for saving time, recognizing trick questions, and dealing with unexpected roadblocks on test day. The keys to a high score are speed and accuracy. I will maximize your child's speed and accuracy by ensuring that he or she knows the material, and knows the structure of the test.


Dyslexics - diagnosed or not - are prime candidates for multi-sensory learning plans. I use all three main learning styles - visual, auditory and kinesthetic - with all my students. My dyslexic students naturally use more than average kinesthetic learning methods. These kinesthetic learning methods are tied to and associated with the more common visual and auditory methods used in the classroom. Your dyslexic child is a different type of learner, and school s are set up for the efficiency of the majority. My aim is to help your child develop the skill of "translating" his/her learning into the style which best suits him/her.

Elementary (K-6th)

I have taught 4th, 5th, 6th and 7th grade in a Bay Area private school. I have substituted in K - 5 classrooms. I volunteer tutor at a disadvantaged Bay Area public school. I can teach all subject areas (except foreign language). There is a lot of stress on elementary students in the Bay Area. I aim to help your child make sense of what they are being asked to do in school, and give him or her the confidence that he or she can do it! Once your child is relaxed, he or she can engage and learn. I use many different teaching methods to cater to diverse learning styles. Whether your child has hit a slight bump on the education road, or is becoming increasingly confused, I can help her or him regain confidence and rediscover the joy of learning.

Elementary Math

Elementary math is becoming more complex and conceptual. Let me help you sort out the concepts which look like a jumbled mess, at this stage! The will all come together in high school, I assure you! I have taught 4th, 5th, 6th and 7th grade math according to the Californian standards. I tutor up to algebra 1. When elementary students struggle with math, it is often because they cannot digest so many concepts at once. I will re-teach your child those concepts using more hands-on methods, more movement, and at least three different ways to remember and reinforce each concept. Do not let your child blindly remember procedures at this stage - it will come back to haunt them in high school. Let's get the concepts straight!

Elementary Science

Elementary science is one of my favorite subjects, because it's all about problem-solving. If your child is struggling with science, is it because he or she is trying to memorize a bunch of facts? In our work together your child and I will approach this subject with true scientific curiosity. We will explore and link the elements of the unit, conduct and discuss experiments, and practice the skill of scientific hypothesizing. I have taught 4th and 5th grade science. I particularly love Science Fair projects. Exploring what should happen, and why, and thinking about why it didn't (in some cases) is such fun for students. I want every child to enjoy science and exploration.


I majored in English, and I also practiced law. I love language, literature, and how they can help us learn about ourselves and our world. I have taught English to 4th, 5th and 7th grade students, and I have tutored students from 3rd to adult. I have helped with all levels: from paragraph writing, to AP essays and college applications. I can help with strategies for spelling tests, too, as they should utilize your student's natural learning style (but often don't). Communication is a core skill, and English is the one subject we use all our lives, regardless of what work we do.


The ISEE is commonly used as an entrance exam by Bay Area private high schools, particularly the non-Catholic schools. The challenge of the ISEE is that it is a test for all levels of high school, 9 - 12. That's right, your 8th grader is taking exactly the same test as an 11th grader looking to get into the same school. Don't worry, because the results only compare and rank your 8th grader against other 8th graders. However, it can be confusing and disturbing for your child to sit an exam on which he or she is expected to perform "badly", as the exam has questions for students three years older! I can help your child understand the types of questions and the structure of the test, as well as reviewing the subject material. I can also teach your child a few new concepts which will greatly increase the number of questions he/she will be able to do. The ISEE requires special preparation. Make sure your child gets it!

Social Studies

I have taught 4th, 5th and 6th grade history/social studies. When students struggle in social studies, it is often because they are trying to remember a pile of seemingly unrelated facts. I will show your child the story behind the history. We will look at social studies by analyzing the cause and effect relationships that are the basis of cultures and their histories. Your child will not only learn to enjoy social studies, but he or she will also be developing critical thinking skills. For the sake of your child's conceptual development (as well as grades), let me help him or her learn how to understand history, and not just repeat dates!

Study Skills

I have taught 4th - 7th grade. In this age group, very few children are organized! Very few know, instinctively, how best to study. I can help your child understand his own best study methods - from organization, to time management, to learning style. Should your child do spelling or math homework first? Should he/she work at a desk all the time, take breaks, or be allowed to listen to music while doing homework? Does your child memorize better when reading, or being read to? Every child is unique. I will help you and your child your child uncover the answers and design a way of studying tailored to him or her.


I have taught writing in elementary and middle school; and I have tutored students from 3rd to adult in how to write a properly structured essay. The "formula" for an essay is quite simple, on the face of it, yet many students struggle. Why? Largely this is because the way they are taught to build their essay - from the top to the bottom - does not work for them. This results in many frustrating hours spent looking at a blank page trying to think up a good topic sentence. When students struggle with writing, I teach them to build their essay from the inside out. Then the topic sentences come easily! Every student can learn how to produce a well structured and beautifully written essay. It's actually a surprisingly quick process to learn the "inside out" method.

University of Melbourne (Australia)
English, History, Law
University of Melbourne (Australia)
Michigan State University College of Education


University of Melbourne (Australia) (English, History, Law)

University of Melbourne (Australia) (MBA)

Michigan State University College of Education (Other)

Lisa made language arts fun! — Our 12 year old son had gotten to the point where he was dreading Language Arts writing assignments (unless it was creative writing) and he was barely putting in any effort. Right off the bat, Lisa empowered our son just by the tone of her voice. It was not a matter of if he would succeed in writing, but when it would . At the end of two hours, I could see he had more confidence. He came home and ...

— Stacia, Sunnyvale, CA on 6/3/14

Hourly rate

Standard Hourly Rate: $100.00

Cancellation: 8 hours notice required

30% discount for students with an IEP.

Travel policy

Lisa will travel within 10 miles of Sunnyvale, CA 94087.