Over 900 tutoring hours

Mary W.

Bradenton, FL


English & Writing Specialist Is Ready to Help You Succeed!

Background check passed as of 4/30/14
5.0 average from 332 ratings
Success with Miss Mary
— Matej, Bradenton, FL on 4/21/15

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University of South Florida Sarasota Manatee
University of Tampa


University of South Florida Sarasota Manatee (English)

University of Tampa (Master's)

About Mary

I believe in you and your ability to improve your English and writing skills. Together, we can do this and more!

Why hire me, Miss Mary, as your private tutor?

-Personalized Attention, no rotating personnel
-Tailored Lessons, no standardized curriculum
-Flexible Scheduling, no contract required
-Discounts Available, no registration fee
-Convenient Location, you decide
-Added Value, no charge for contact between sessions

My Services:

I tutor native English speakers and ESL students at all levels of proficiency. I've worked with children as young as five and adults as old as 65 from all over the world.

My English-related subjects include: application essays, composition, conversation, corporate projects, editing (copy or content), grammar, homework assignments, language arts, letters (business or personal), literary analyses, MLA citation, PowerPoint design, proofreading, public speaking, reading comprehension, research papers, résumé design, spelling, study skills, test preparation (including ACT, ASVAB, GED, HSPT, MAT, SAT, SSAT, TEAS, and TOEFL), vocabulary, and writing (creative or technical, personal or academic).
My Method:

One size does not fit all when it comes to private tutoring. I specifically design each lesson to meet your individual needs.

Using a combination of Demonstrator and Facilitator methods, I deliver content through modeling rather than lecturing. I act as an academic coach, promoting connections between personal interests and lesson requirements. Learning can be fun!

I adhere to three main principles: individualized attention, unlimited Q&A, and positive encouragement. I offer a safe and non-judgmental environment to facilitate learning and foster self-confidence. I support students' unique approaches to learning and suggest techniques they might not have tried before.
My Availability:

I maintain a flexible schedule. If weekday sessions won’t suit your agenda, we can discuss evening, weekend, or even holiday hours at the same rate. I make house calls in the Bradenton and Sarasota areas of Florida. If you prefer, we can meet at a local library or other public location of your choice. I also teach globally via Skype.
My Credentials:

I am an inspired wordsmith with a master of fine arts degree in creative writing with a concentration in nonfiction. I graduated cum laude with a bachelor of arts degree in English with a concentration in professional/technical writing. I have earned ESOL-related continuing education credits and have helped students and professionals from diverse countries improve their listening, speaking, and writing skills. I have also assisted students complete virtual school semesters outside the traditional classroom and prepare for standardized exams. I am a professional member of NTA (National Tutoring Association).
Related Experience:

Academic Coach
Adult Class Facilitator
College Professor
High School Tutor
Private Tutor
Substitute Teacher
Teaching Assistant
Test Proctor
Glowing Testimonials
Here’s what some others are saying:

“You must love your job. You’re always so enthusiastic.”
JD, Queens, New York

“Thank you very much for working with [my son]. You really helped to provide guidance and support. He is now a bit more confident.”
DM, Lakewood Ranch, Florida

Cancellation Policy:

Thank you for understanding that if for any reason a student must cancel a scheduled session, a minimum three-hour notice is required. Notice given in less than three hours prior to session start time will result in a fee equal to ½ the session price.
Available Discounts:

In addition to the standard WyzAnt discounts, I offer a reduced rate if your friends or family members join you in the same class. First student: $65 per hour. Each additional student: only $40 per hour!
I believe in you and your ability to improve your English and writing skills. Together, we can do this and more!

Why hire me, Miss Mary, as your private tutor?

-Personalized Attention, no rotating personnel
Read more

3 hours notice required

First student: $65 per hour. Each additional student at the same lesson: only $40 per hour!

Travel Radius
Travels within 10 miles of Bradenton, FL 34208
Background Check: Passed

"Success with Miss Mary"

- Matej, Bradenton, FL on 4/21/15

"Mary is very knowledgeable about the ASVAB test."

- David, Bradenton, FL on 1/29/16

"Great writing tutor"

- Tim, Wilmington, DE on 11/7/15

"Very nice and patient."

- Julian, Bradenton, FL on 8/6/15

"Great tutor!"

- Maria, Sarasota, FL on 6/3/15

"Great Tutor!"

- Alex, Bradenton, FL on 6/26/14

"Great Tutor"

- Sarah, Palmetto, FL on 5/2/14

"Big thank you to Mary."

- Eva, Bradenton, FL on 10/26/13

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.

ACT English

English is one of five sections included on the ACT in addition to math, reading, science, and an optional writing section. In 45 minutes, you’ll be expected to answer 75 multiple choice questions based on prose passages of varying lengths. Your rhetorical skills will be tested along with mechanics and usage. You will need to be familiar with proper punctuation, grammar rules, and effective organization among other items. But don’t worry! I am here to help you with all of that.

As your private ACT tutor, I will not only practice sample questions with you, but I’ll also offer general test-taking strategies. We will review concepts that underlie the types of questions you struggle with most, which will lead you to your best possible score. Together, we can do this!

ACT Reading

Reading is one of five sections included on the ACT in addition to math, English, science, and an optional writing section. Within a 35-minute block, you’ll be expected to read college freshman-level prose passages of approximately 800 words each and answer 40 multiple choice questions based on them. You’ll read from a variety of genres — fiction, social studies, humanities, and natural sciences. Expect to see referring questions as well as reasoning questions.

If all of that sounds overwhelming, it needn’t be. As your private ACT tutor, I will give you hints and offer strategies to make the seemingly impossible task possible and doable. Together, we will practice sample questions and target the aspects of reading comprehension you struggle with most.


A crucial part of your overall scoring on the ASVAB exam is the score you earn on the Armed Forces Qualification Test (AFQT), which will be used to determine if you are qualified to join a particular branch of the military service and in what capacity. Your AFQT score is determined, in part, by your test results in Verbal Composite (VE). In fact, your VE score will be counted twice as part of your AFQT score!

Your Verbal Composite score is a combination of your Word Knowledge (WK) and your Paragraph Comprehension (PC). As an English tutor, I can help you prepare for these very important components. Together, we will do exercises to build your vocabulary and improve your reading skills. We will also review many sample ASVAB questions to familiarize you with the Verbal Composite segments of the exam.


The HSPT is meant to be taken only once. If taken more than once, the lower score will be recorded; so, it’s important that your child be prepared to do well on the first try. That’s where I can help, as your child’s private, certified HSPT tutor! As an English and writing specialist who has helped prepare numerous students for a wide range of standardized exams, I can offer your child general test-taking strategies along with specific assistance with the HSPT. We’ll not only try sample test questions, but we’ll review the academic concepts behind the questions your child struggles with most.

I have experience teaching in middle school, high school, college, and university classrooms as well as outside of them in the private arena. I’d be happy to be part of your child’s success story!

Elementary (K-6th)

Most students at the K-6 level who’ve been exposed to my teaching style refer to me as Mary Poppins! Yes, I carry a big bag and, sometimes, an umbrella. I make learning fun with the use of flash cards, games, music, and other interesting elements that keep children engaged.

My very first tutoring stint was helping a second-grade dyslexic boy learn to read. Today, he is a successful pediatrician! My steadfast guidance as a tutor has brought a first-grade student who had struggled with basic sight words up to a third-grade reading level. Now, she reads on her own and enjoys library visits! I’ve tutored a four-year-old girl from the Czech Republic and a nine-year-old girl from Russia. Both have shown improvement in their English speaking and listening skills. I worked as an assistant teacher in a Learning Resource Center at a private academy where sixth grade students would frequently visit for extra help with homework assignments and exam preparation.

I find that, often, all it takes is some one-on-one attention outside the classroom setting along with consistent, positive reinforcement of elementary curriculum for children to thrive in school. An appropriately-matched private tutor can provide that essential component in your child’s education.


I earned a Master of Fine Arts degree in creative writing at the University of Tampa and a Bachelor of Arts degree in English at the University of South Florida Sarasota-Manatee where I served as vice president of the English Society. I also served as vice president of my local chapter of Sigma Tau Delta International English Honor Society. I have a solid understanding of the content of American English in its various forms of communication.

Whether you are an ESL student or a native English speaker, together we can improve the skills you most want to work on. I can help you boost your vocabulary, elevate your conversation ability, enhance your reading comprehension, sharpen your spelling, or advance the effectiveness of your writing.


I've tutored ESL students from countries as diverse as Russia, the Czech Republic, Ecuador, and beyond. Their ages have ranged from four to forty-four. Many needed general conversation assistance, with little emphasis on grammar; a few needed help preparing for the Maturita exit exam where sentence structure and listening skills were imperative; and one was a math teacher in her own country, but needed stronger English skills to be certified in America. For her, subject-related vocabulary was primary. I've also helped a student practice for her citizenship interview. Reading and writing were necessary in this case. I tailor each lesson for the student’s particular needs.

Because I work with students from such diverse countries, it would be nearly impossible for me to learn all of their languages. That’s the main reason I prefer to use the direct/natural method in my tutoring sessions, which means that I immerse the student in the target language, English, and refrain from using the student’s native language. To communicate, we use pictures, body language, music, games, and flash cards, along with the assistance of Google’s translator.


Earning your high school equivalency certificate not only makes you more marketable in the job arena, but it’s also the first step on the path to college. Why put it off any longer?

As a certified tutor, I can help you prepare for the most recent version of the GED, which went into effect in January 2014. This newer version of the General Educational Development exam can be taken only by computer. It measures high-school level skills and knowledge in four different areas: math, science, social studies, and language arts.

The latest version of the exam will require some background knowledge, emphasize critical thinking, ask more science questions, and demand more writing than the previous version. Seven different types of questions will be posed: multiple choice, drag-and-drop, hot spot, drop-down, fill-in-the-blank, short answer, and extended response. Don't panic! As your private tutor, I’ll familiarize you with each of these, review with you some basic academic material, go over several practice exams with you, and introduce you to online resources for additional help.


There are numerous aspects of grammar to be considered in any language, and with English, they can be particularly cumbersome. I have prepared countless lessons specifically designed for my students’ most vexing challenges. Here are a few: indefinite pronouns, modifier placement, prepositional phrases, proper punctuation, sentence structure, and verb tensing. If you struggle with these or other areas of English grammar, I can help. We will discuss, study, and practice grammatical rules until your newly acquired skills become habits in your writing and in your speech.

Microsoft PowerPoint

Do you need to construct and deliver a PowerPoint presentation? I can definitely help you with that. I have designed several PowerPoint presentations myself, and have also helped students and business professionals design their own. I am familiar with graphic options within the program to enhance the visual appeal of your content, which will keep your show interesting for your audience to watch. I can show you ways to add sound effects and animation, too. Together, we can personalize the slides to adhere to your “brand.”

My expertise in this field goes beyond creating the PowerPoint slide show. I can also help increase your confidence in presenting your show in front of people. I will teach you how to gauge your audience, adjust your stance, and project your voice so that you not only have a fabulous slide show to display, but also an effective delivery of it.


My detail-oriented and A-type personality, combined with my English and writing background, makes me the perfect proofreader! I have experience with the deeper levels of editing as well.

In writing workshops, I have offered line by line critiques of aspiring authors’ works. In my roles as substitute teacher, teaching assistant, fellow student, and private tutor, I have read students’ essays and suggested revisions. I refined the manuscript of a writer’s romance novel being prepared for self-publishing. Having had my own thesis work edited on a monthly basis by professionally published authors, I learned what to look for in others’ writing and appropriate ways to comment. I pass that knowledge on to the students I tutor.

Public Speaking

My public speaking experience is quite diverse. I am a former member of Toastmasters International where I gathered much of my public speaking training, and I served as an ordained minister speaking on matters of spirituality. In academic settings, I’ve stood before classrooms filled with students, was a guest lecturer at the University of South Florida Sarasota-Manatee, and delivered a commencement address at The University of Tampa. I have publicly read my original writings before live audiences.

As a public speaking tutor, I am not only qualified to coach you on how to deliver a speech—including gauging your audience, adjusting your stance, and projecting your voice—but also on how to write the material you’ll deliver—including structuring your speech, clarifying your purpose, and pacing your time.

I’ll help increase your confidence as a competent and effective public speaker. Together, we can do this!


Reading is a gateway to the world. Ineffective reading, meaning without comprehension, inhibits social, academic, and personal expansion. I want to help you become a better reader. Together, we can do this!

As your private reading tutor, I’ll first evaluate your level of reading before introducing you to sight words and phonics you might not be familiar with. We will practice your skills using flash cards and by reading material that interests you, not necessarily academic texts. This will hold your attention and build your confidence, which can then be carried over to the scholastic arena.

SAT Reading

The Critical Reading section of the SAT consists of two parts, all multiple-choice questions. One part will pose sentence completion questions, which test your vocabulary, and the other will give reading passages and questions that test your comprehension.

In our tutoring sessions, we will review many sample tests. We will learn to identify word components that will help you determine the meanings of words you might not have heard before. We’ll have vocabulary drills. I’ll help you identify not only the facts of what you read, but the implications as well. I’ll also offer you SAT test-taking strategies for earning your best possible score.

SAT Writing

The Writing section of the SAT consists of two parts. The first is an essay you are expected to write within 25 minutes based on a given prompt. In our tutoring sessions, we will review how to: brainstorm some examples, take a position, create an outline, formulate a thesis, and structure an essay. We’ll practice doing this within the allotted time frame. We will come up with a list of transitional words and phrases that can be used regardless of the question. We will also take a look at some previously scored sample essays and gain a better understanding of what the SAT readers are looking for.

The second part of the Writing section consists of multiple-choice questions that test your grammatical skills. Your score on the multiple-choice section accounts for 70% of your total Writing section score. That’s a lot! In our tutoring sessions, we will take sample tests and review the grammatical rules behind the questions you struggle with. Some areas you can expect to be tested on include subject-verb agreement, pronoun errors, parallelism, verb tensing, and more.

Don’t panic, I’m here to help!


The Secondary School Admission Test (SSAT) is designed for students who wish to gain entrance into private school establishments, particularly in a part of the world other than their home residence. The test is administered in English and helps administrators decide upon student admission. Your grade level determines whether you will take the elementary, middle, or upper level exam. I can help you prepare for any or all of them.

Regardless of which level of the exam you need to take, the purpose of the SSAT is to measure basic verbal (analogies and synonyms), quantitative (math), reading, and writing skills. Your performance on the exam provides admission officers with an idea of your academic ability and "fit" for their schools. The best way to ensure success is to become familiar with the format of the test, get acquainted with the types of questions that will be asked, and try practice questions similar to those you will see on the exam. I am familiar with all of these areas and have helped students just like you properly prepare.

Study Skills

To do well academically, a student of any age must develop effective study habits in order to incorporate new knowledge into his memory bank. Working together, we can develop strategies that help you retain information you receive in the classroom and outside it too.

Some key areas we can focus on are:
• Listening – knowing what to really pay attention to
Reading – picking out what’s important
• Organizing – cleaning up your backpack and study space
• Note taking – learning how to outline
• Prioritizing – managing time frames

I will offer tips in these and other study skills areas that will help you remember what you learn and be able to retrieve that information when necessary in the future. I will make suggestions tailored specifically for you and your individual learning style. I will share some of my own unique strategies that have helped me become an A+ student. We can practice these methods together.

I have experience as a substitute teacher, teaching assistant, private tutor, certified tutor, and class facilitator. One particular stint was for several months in the Learning Resource Center of a private academy. The majority of students there came specifically for help studying for exams. I’ve worked with students as young as five and as old as 65. I’d be happy to help you, too.


So, you’ve decided to go to nursing school. Hooray for you! First, you’ll have to pass the TEAS, Test of Essential Academic Skills. This multiple choice exam will measure your proficiency in four areas: reading comprehension, English language usage, math, and science.

As your private TEAS tutor, I will help you master how to draw inferences and conclusions, determine the main idea, and identify important details of passages you’ll have to read. I’ll also teach you the rules of punctuation and grammar, and help you improve your spelling and vocabulary. I can work with you to brush up on your basic math and the critical thinking skills needed for the science section.
I’ll offer general test-taking strategies you can apply to the TEAS or most any standardized test.

I look forward to helping you succeed!


Hooray for you for wanting to take the Test of English as a Foreign Language! I can help you prepare for the TOEFL or the TOEFL Junior regardless of your native language. These exams are meant to ensure your language proficiency and are comprised of four parts: reading (comprehension), listening (understanding), speaking (linguistic spontaneity and clarity), and writing (academic essays on the Standard version, paragraph writing and editing on the Junior version).

As your private TOEFL tutor, I’ll help get you familiarized with exactly what to expect, work on your pacing so that you do not run over the time limit, and practice several test questions with you. Beyond helping you understand concepts beneath the multiple choice questions, I will be able to evaluate your speaking and writing skills — something you cannot practice on your own.

I look forward to helping you improve your overall English fluency so that you can score well on your exam!


Limited vocabulary leads to a lower level of reading comprehension and a thwarted ability to communicate in general. It is imperative that we know the meaning of the words we read, hear, and speak. When we don’t, messages are misconstrued.

As a private vocabulary tutor, I focus on the types of words appropriate to the individual with whom I am working. An adult student would likely need career-specific vocabulary—mathematical terms or sales and marketing verbiage, for example. A high school student preparing to take the SAT needs a wider set of scholarly words in his vocabulary. For an ESL student, everyday phrases, common verbs, and nouns for identifying surroundings are crucial.

Tutoring sessions will consist of breaking down the structure of words into their roots, prefixes, and suffixes. We will make word associations from the perspective of synonyms, antonyms, and homonyms. I will encourage you to make friends with a dictionary and a thesaurus. Index cards will be handy study tools, and drills will be part of our vocabulary practice.


I have experience with several categories of writing and their various genres. I earned a Master of Fine Arts degree in creative writing and a Bachelor of Arts degree in English with a concentration in professional/technical writing. As a lyricist, I had seven songs published on a professionally recorded album. I won a campus-wide poetry contest.

Whether it’s a personal letter you’re working on, a simple essay, a poetry explication, or a research paper, I can help. As your writing tutor, I would start by reviewing a sample of your work or a first draft of an assignment. Depending upon the goals we've set for your tutoring sessions, I would proofread, edit, or offer a line by line critique of your piece. I would plan lessons targeting the weakest areas of your writing. Perhaps it’s structure, tone, grammar, or citations you need help with. I am here, eager to serve.

University of South Florida Sarasota Manatee
University of Tampa


University of South Florida Sarasota Manatee (English)

University of Tampa (Master's)

Success with Miss Mary — HI- Miss Mary tutored me in English and SSAT preparation for 2 months, 2 times a week this past fall. She taught me to review my work before going to the next question or assignment,revise my essay construction, and other things to help me succeed in school. I am so thankful to her because I was recently accepted to prep school in the northeast. She is a great teacher and tutor. Thank you Miss ...

— Matej, Bradenton, FL on 4/21/15

Hourly fee

Standard Hourly Fee: $65.00

Cancellation: 3 hours notice required

First student: $65 per hour. Each additional student at the same lesson: only $40 per hour!

Travel policy

Mary will travel within 10 miles of Bradenton, FL 34208.