Hunter College (Music)
Mercy College (Master's)
As a former ESL teacher in a New York City public high school and in Shanghai China, I have had ample opportunity to test the language-learning techniques I developed while teaching myself seven languages in addition to my native English (Spanish, Italian, Portuguese, French, Japanese, Chinese, and Dutch). I have observed which techniques work best with which students and I have worked with students from every kind of background from all over the world. My classes have always experienced a high rate of success as illustrated by their acceptance into some of the best colleges and universities worldwide. The real fun consists in constantly improving my techniques in order to cut down on the time it takes to become fluent in a new language.
My Bachelor's degree is in music, and I have spent my entire adult life performing and teaching piano. As a musician, I learned that if you want to get good at a skill, you have to practice all the time. Once the student is convinced of this truth, the rest is easy. My Master's degree in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages gave me the opportunity to apply what I learned as a musician to the field of language acquisition. The same rules of learning applied to my acquisition of the skills of salsa dancing and my subsequent success as a dance instructor at the College of Staten Island and St. Francis College.
Although I understand the need for some of my students to pass standardized tests such as the NYSESLAT, TOEFL, IELTS, etc., my primary interest is to bring my students to full fluency in English, as well as in any other language I may be teaching. After all, if you are fluent in the language, no test is difficult for you. I proved this to myself after I became fluent in Spanish and attained the highest score on the Spanish CLEP test which entitled me to 12 credits of college level Spanish. I expect the same kind of result from all my students.
Whether I am teaching English, Piano, or Salsa Dancing, my intention is always to bring my students to the level where they can teach the skill themselves, i.e. the highest level. Since I offer all my students the opportunity to learn in the comfort of their own homes, I do need 24 hour notice if a lesson must be cancelled. However, I always try to reschedule the lesson, since consistency in learning a skill is everything. Yes, learning a language is learning a skill, just like playing the piano or dancing salsa. And yes, learning a skill is tremendous fun.
As a former ESL teacher in a New York City public high school and in Shanghai China, I have had ample opportunity to test the language-learning techniques I developed while teaching myself seven languages in addition to my native English (Spanish, Italian, Portuguese, French, Japanese, Chinese, and Dutch). I have observed which techniques work
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I started playing the piano at the age of seven and have been teaching piano since I was fifteen years old. I graduated magna cum Laude from Hunter College with a BA in music. My private piano instructor at Hunter College was international concert pianist Peter Basquin. In addition to teaching piano, I have performed in many jazz clubs and conducted several recitals for my students.
I learned to dance salsa with world-renowned salsa instructor Eddie Torres. In addition to studying with Eddie, I have studied with all the best salsa instructors in New York, including Jimmy Anton, Carlos Koenig, and Delille Thomas. I have taught salsa dancing privately and at The College of Staten Island, St. Francis College, The YMCA, and several other schools in New York City. I have also given several public salsa dance performances.