"Molly's maths marks have improved by from about 57% to about 80% since working with Gill. She really enjoys her sessions. We were over the moon when we found out that out daughter has been offered places at 3 of the top schools after her entry exams - as well as a scholarship for her English writing."
Parent of Maths and English student
2023: Completed SLT Foundation Training in SEND
Sept 2011-December 2012: MA in Acting and Performance from the Academy of Live and Recorded Arts
Sept 2006-June 2009: BA Hons High 2:1 in English and American Literature, with Drama and Theatre Studies from The University of Kent
A-Levels: English Lit: A, Biology: B, Drama: A
AS Level: Geography: A
My specialist subjects are English Literature and Drama up to A-level, including BA Hons lecturing experience. I also teach Maths, Core Science and Religious studies up to GCSE and prepare students for entrance into leading Independent schools at 11+ and 13+.
I am a very friendly and open tutor, wanting my students to feel relaxed in my sessions, so that they have the confidence to speak out and explore the texts we are studying. I’ve developed good instincts through my tutoring career, and have discovered great exercises and activities to help bring out the best in a student. I have a passion for language and I aim to enthuse my students with this same feeling towards language: metaphors, similes and other devices are not just terms to learn for exams, but literary devices that actually bring a text to life.
The key to being a successful tutor is understanding that each student will learn in different ways – some are visual learners, some work well through reading, some prefer to make up songs! Allowing the student to explore what works for them is fundamental to getting the best results for themselves.
Many of the students I have had in the past have seemed weighed down under the pressure of results. While this is understandable, I try to encourage them to focus less on their fears about the exam final result and external pressure, but instead focus on enjoying what is in front of them and discovering the best ways in which they learn. Learning good exam technique is an essential to passing with flying colours, but the enjoyment of a subject should never be overlooked.
Please find below a snapshot of my tuition experience.
KS1 English, Maths and Drama (Processing and ADHD)
I worked with Weston (6) who was being home schooled. I worked with three other tutors for six weeks, supporting Weston with his phonetics, writing and numeracy. Weston has processing difficulties and ADHD tendencies. I was able to incorporate a lot of Drama into our lessons, which helped keep him engaged and focussed.
KS2 English and Maths home schooling (ADHD and Autism)
Stephan has been taken out of his specialist school, and required home schooling. I worked with another tutor to ensure he was getting the attention he needed in an environment that he felt safe and secure in. He was working at a much lower level than the national average so he needed a tutor who was patient and able to explain the work in a way that was clear and logical for him. At times, he would get very distracted but on the whole, he really enjoyed our time working together. We would have to keep the exercises relatively short and interactive so as to ensure Stephan’s focus and engagement.
Weekly support for A in the final months leading up to his 10+ exams for King’s College and City of London. A is a bright and able student with strengths in maths. His English is a weaker area, and we are focussing on improving his levels and confidence ahead of his assessments, as well as fine-tuning his overall exam technique and understanding.
Molly required help in Maths and English for her 11 Plus Entry exams. We worked together for about 5 month, 2 hours a week preparing her for her entry exams. When I began working with Molly, there were large gaps in her maths knowledge and she had little enthusiasm for the subject, however things soon began to turn around. She got offered places at four schools (Wimbledon High, The Hall, Surbiton High and Sutton), as well as being offered a Scholarship for her performance in English at her first choice school. Her mother mentioned to me that since working with me her Maths grades have improved dramatically going from an average of 57% to about 80%.
13+ English, Maths and Science preparation
I worked with Alexane for 6 months as she prepared for her 13+ Common Entrance exams. We worked closely on Alexane’s understanding of all the subjects, with a specific focus on the Sciences and her exam technique.
iGCSE English Language, English Literature, Religious Studies (iGCSE Edexcel Syllabus)
This student was getting E grades in their mock exams, but through more practice and revision I predict that she can get at least a C grade. We are going over past papers to help with her revision.
Key Stage 2 and 3 History and Geography
I have worked with various different students on their History and Geography at Key Stage 2 and 3, including a geography project on Major City developments and populations, and rainforest projects. I have also covered various topics within History.
Science KS3 and GCSE (AQA Syllabus (Double Award))
I give weekly sessions to two brothers in Year 10 and Year 8. These boys are following the AQA syllabus, across Biology, Chemistry and Physics. Having seen the school reports for both students, there has been a marked improvement in their Science grades since working with me and I put this down to them being allowed the time to really delve into each topic and ask questions that can sometimes be overlooked in a busy classroom. I encourage both students to begin each session with a couple of questions they aren’t sure about, and by the end of the session they have a much more solid understanding. In my tutoring sessions, I place particular focus on learning specialist terms that must be used correctly in exam answers.
Adam was behind the rest of his class when it came to times tables and basic addition and subtraction. He was really reluctant to learn when I first arrived, but after only a few sessions with me his confidence, ability and passion for maths grew stronger. We would use real money when learning about adding and subtracting with money, so that he saw the practical use of maths. His timetables improved rapidly as well. We’d start each session with a mini-competition between me and him on our times tables. He likes this competitive element and it forced him to think faster, but in a fun way.
KS2 English to students at the Dharitri Tuition Centre, Leyton
Here, I have between 3-4 students working together on punctuation, creative writing, spelling and SATS preparation. The children find my sessions very engaging, and I enjoy working with them also. Any news words they may be unfamiliar with, I get them to write sentences with these words in them to help them remember the definitions.
Amir was very good at maths, and had a passion for it. I worked with him to develop the skills that he already had, and to begin looking at the GCSE syllabus to get a head start.
KS3 Maths, Science and Maths Tutoring
I gave half-term booster sessions for a 14 year old girl at Bedales School to prepare her for her end of year exams. Having looked at what she had covered over the past few months at school, I created a revision timetable so we could easily manage the workload in preparing for these exams.
GCSE English (Dyslexia)
Yesmina needed help with her English to prepare her for her GCSEs. She has dyslexia, so we worked on her confidence with reading and writing. Her coursework was on Macbeth and Othello, comparing the protagonists’ Fatal Flaws, and subsequent fall from grace. She admitted to me she found Shakespeare very intimating to begin with and could not understand what it meant. For the first few sessions, I would read the passages so she could hear the words being spoken which made it easier to draw out the meaning of the language. Then we would look at more detail of certain passages, exploring the imagery that Shakespeare uses. I would help her pull out relevant quotes to support her coursework and guide her into being able to explain the relevance of each quote. I also suggested a few theatre shows to go and see which would really bring Shakespeare alive on stage.
Ali’s confidence and passion for maths was almost non-existent when I began working with him a couple of months before his GCSE’s. Through regular sessions, his focus and determination to do well became more evident. He ended up getting 2 full grades higher than predicted.
A-Level English Literature (Home schooling)
I currently provide A Level English Literature to a home schooling client. This has been a challenging role as I’ve had to be quite adaptive to an ever changing schedule due to the families busy working life. This has lead me to organise my lessons to ensure the full syllabus is not only covered, but fully understood, while still being creative with the lesson plan; allowing the tutee enough freedom to delve deeper into topics of particular interest, or revise areas that are more challenging. This has been offered as a mix of face to face and online sessions. I’m adaptable to both.
Screen Writing BA Lecturing
I was asked to Guest Lecture at The University of Falmouth, as part of the writing for screen course. Here, I gave feedback to the BA Hons and Masters students on what is required in TV/ film script writing. This is one of the top institutions for film-making so it was an honour to be asked to lecture here.
I worked with Mohammed on his Literature Review for his Masters Degree. I helped him structure his review, and plan in the most productive way, as well giving booster lessons on grammar and punctuation, as English was not his first language. He contacted me a few months after he handed his Review in telling me he had got a high 2:1 for his Literature Review, when he had previously been working at a 2:2.
I worked with a mature student originally from Vietnam who had moved to the UK. We worked on improving his vocabulary and confidence with his spoken English.
8+ and 13+ Residential (Paris)
I was recently working with a family in Paris, preparing each of their two daughters for their upcoming exams (8+ and 13+). This was a very interesting role as although the subjects were the same (bar the addition of Science for the 13+), each girl required very specific teaching and guidance. I managed this by ensuring each girl had a stimulating workload when I needed to put focus on their sister. It was also lovely to see the two girls working together on larger problem solving tasks. I really enjoyed my time with the family and regularly spent time with them outside of lessons. When it comes to residential tutoring, I’m happy to join in with a family but equally appreciate my own time.
I spend an hour each week with these students, from the age of 5-9, developing their communication and creativity skills, as well as boosting their confidence and ability to concentrate. We play various games that require the children to use their imagination in a focused way, using different sources of inspiration. These children really love my sessions and I have noticed a huge difference in the communication since I’ve begun working with them.
Hobbies and Interests
I love reading, so I always have a book I can recommend. I try and go to the theatre as often as my timetable will allow. Seeing live theatre is an incredible experience. I love to travel and used to live in South Africa where I learnt so much.
“Gillian is a perfect match, thank you! One lesson in and Lily is amazed at how many gaps have been filled in her basic understanding of first principles.”
Age 13 Maths, Judith
“A creative and patient tutor…makes all the difference. My daughter is the youngest student in her year group and was behind her peers in maths. She was frustrated and felt defeated. Over the past year, Gill has worked with her patiently and in a very creative manner. She actually looks forward to her appointment with Gill each week! She often doesn’t even realise she is working hard because Gill manages to make each lesson seem fun. My daughter’s teachers have noticed a marked difference in her ability to focus and grasp new concepts and supervising homework is much less stressful at home. From time to time, Gill also works with my daughter on reading comprehension. I recommend her highly for for either subject.”
“Gillian has worked with my son Jack for this academic year focusing on English and RE 2 days per week. Gill has proved to be an excellent support to Jack increasing knowledge, exam preparation and confidence substantially. We are very happy to recommend Gill to future tutoring opportunities.”
GCSE Home schooling in English and Religious studies, Mark O’C.
“Gillian has helped both our boys (12 + 14) with all three Sciences for some time. She has really bonded with them and there is a genuine relationship that has developed. Gillian mixes seriousness with a fun approach as required, which has really helped. I would recommend her unreservedly.”