I retired from teaching in 2006 after 34 years in the job and since then I have been tutoring on a regular basis.
- Which subject(s) do you teach?
I teach History, Government & Politics, International Relations and Religious Studies (but only to 13+ and Key Stage 3).
- Tell me about your qualifications.
Certificate in Education, Bachelor of Arts (History), Counselling diploma, Professional Coaching (Education)
- How much do you charge?
For all examination students I charge £35 per hour. To anyone who needs help at KS3 my charge is £30 per hour
- Where do you teach?
If families prefer, I do teach at home, but in my experience, most people prefer that I visit them and I am very happy to do so. I live near Epsom in Surrey, which I find is central to most places within a 10 to 15 mile radius. However, for 3 years, I had a student in Slough which was a greater distance than that, so it is not a strict limit. I have taught students in a variety of places in London, Croydon, Richmond upon Thames, Chertsey, Walton on Thames, Barnes, Wimbledon, Hounslow, Twickenham, Sunbury on Thames, Hampton, Streatham, Morden, as well as all places local to Epsom.
- When are you available?
I am available most times - mornings, afternoons and evenings plus weekends. I am also available during most holidays.
- Which ages and levels do you teach?
I teach anyone from Key Stage 3, so that in effect means from the age of 11. I teach up to A Level, which includes Common Entrance and GCSE. I also teach adults who wish to improve their qualifications, or simply wish to pursue an interest in History or Politics.
- Which qualifications do you prepare your students for?
I prepare students for end of year exams, Common Entrance, GCSE and A-Level. I am also currently helping an undergraduate studying International Relations. In recent years I have helped other undergraduates in History and Politics.
- Describe your arrangements for online tutoring.
I have taught students on MSN and skype, both of which have been a relatively new project for me. However, I have found face to face tuition to be much more effective and that is the type of contact I prefer.
- Do you have a personal message for students?
I do like make to make a difference, whether that is improving your exam or revision technique, or improving your performance and are requiring a grade improvement, or even wishing to improve your confidence, all of which are basic to exam success. Most people I have come into contact with have been highly satisfied with the outcome, and essentially, I would like to do the same for you! Recognising that each individual has different needs and requirements and making the subject enjoyable, form a major part of my approach to tutoring as well as passing on the enthusiasm I have for the subjects. Also I feel that my experience as a former head of department, as well as 34 years of teaching, is what I bring to my tutoring. Teaching is more than simply the imparting of knowledge. It is down to practitioners such as myself to develop examination technique as well as to help in the learning process, and therefore to develop learning techniques, which are vital to exam success. It is within my capability to advance upon disappointing predicted grades as well as to achieve high pass grades for those whose chosen universities demand them. Finally, now that A levels follow a linear course means that the final exam at the end of two years study can appear to be rather daunting as the modular courses have now finished. Being able to organise yourselves over a two year period will become a key skill to acquire, and this is an area in which I have some expertise.
- What kind of experience do you have?
I have been in teaching, both full-time and in tutoring for almost 40 years, and during that time, I have seen a tremendous number of students which has had its challenges but also its rewards. I taught in Canada for a while, and on returning to the UK, I became the Senior Tutor in an independent school in Middlesex, but I remained very much in touch with the classroom. I have been a tutor for 5 years but this time I have enjoyed the daily variety of people I meet and assist and also I do like the travelling, which is a different aspect to the job.I enjoy what I do and I am looking forward to extending my list of contacts even further.
- Do you have an up-to-date DBS (Disclosure & Barring Service, formerly CRB) Certificate?
Yes from August 2017
- Where and with whom did you train?
Westminster College in Oxford for my teaching certificate and London University for honours degree in History
- Do you belong to any professional organisations?
- Tell me about some of your current students.
Every year throws up a great variety of students and this year (2013-14) has been no exception. A major advantage over full-time teaching in a school is that I am able to treat each individual according to his/her circumstances and requirements and then responding directly to those. One student suffered from anxiety and panic attacks which led to depression which led to her being absent from school for much of her first year Sixth. She decided to continue with her AS Level study in the German Reformation and the Dutch revolt from home and I was called in to be her tutor. She achieved an A grade, but not only that, she got full marks in both her papers.
Unfortunately, from time to time, there arises problems between the student and the teacher and I am called in to unblock an impasse which has developed. I had one such young man who was studying A Level international relations up to 1994 but really could not get on with his teacher. Indeed I was shown a piece of marked work which, despite what in my opinion contained something of value, attracted negative comments. He was predicted an E grade. He actually got a B grade.
Finally, a student who really wanted to go on to study History at university but was finding Year 13 essay technique on Henry VIII rather difficult and so was predicted a D grade, actually ended up with an A and IS going to do a History degree at her first choice university.
A LEVEL: This year (2018) a mother of one of my students wrote' He got an A overall. That is an amazing achievement especially given his starting point at the end of Year 12 of a B and a D in the two papers he sat for AS Level. Thank you for all your help and support, he could not have done it without you.' (He has been accepted at Birmingham to study History).
A student wrote to me after receiving her results (she received a B in History, but needed an A). 'I think you have one of the best teachers I have ever had and wish you could have been my full-time teacher, so thank you for all your help.'
GCSE: I had a Korean student on my books who goes to a boarding school in Somerset and was introduced to me by a Korean agency. History was a closed book to him and he was likely to get a low grade at GCSE. Anyway, he achieved an A grade. He wrote to me: 'Dear Sir! Thank you for all the help you gave me and have a great day.'
All the 8 GCSE students I helped attained high grades. One mother wrote to me: 'are you sitting? Jenna achieved a Grade 9.'
Many thanks John for your excellent tutoring for Julia. Thanks for your commitment and care that gave a great deal of added value. It was very much appreciated.
(22 Aug '13) I'm pleased to say that Julia got an A in her History GCSE - we're all very pleased. She would not have done so well without your tuition, so we're very grateful
John helped David and James through their GCSE and A Level History/Government and Politics. In fact my eldest son changed his degree option to History as a result of his infectious enthusiasm John has for History. I would certainly recommend him.
John helped Louise through her A Level History at a critical moment and the end result was an A grade in the subject achieving full marks in one paper
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