2016: I worked with a very clever and witty 10 year old girl for the final two months towards her North London Collegiate maths tests. Her main obstacle was a combination of silly mistakes (due to rushing her tests) and an inflexibility in devising the correct method for problems. I formed a great relationship with her and helped her to see these problems: her practice test performance improved from a 60% average to an 85% average.
2014-2015: I worked on a weekly basis with a bright 10 year old boy towards his Harrow pre-test. He was very quick and gifted at Maths, but found problem solving and verbal reasoning more difficult. He also struggled with exam technique and nerves in exam situations. Using many practice tests, I enabled him to work to the best of his ability and, in 2015, he was offered a place at Harrow.
2014-15: I worked on Maths with a very clever 10 year old boy, who was not educated in the UK system, towards his 11+ tests at major London independent schools. We worked twice a week for one hour. He was offered a place at 13 at St Paul's, and a place at 11 at the City of London School.
2014-15: I worked on English and Maths with a bright and social 10 year old girl towards her 11+ tests. We worked together in the month preceding her tests, and so we focused on her exam technique as well as filling any knowledge gaps. She was offered a place at Queen's College.
2014: I worked on a weekly basis with an intelligent 10 year old boy towards his Harrow pre-test. He is so quick and clever that I had to slow him down to ensure that he thoroughly understood everything before moving on to the next topic. Following his pre-test in the Autumn of 2014, he was offered a place at Harrow.
2013-2015: I am tutoring a lively 10 year old boy, who struggles to concentrate at his prep school, in English and Mathematics. I helped to prepare him for his pre-tests, and ensure that he is up-to-date with his school and homework.
2013-2014: I taught three small groups of gifted young people (pupils with a lot of potential but without the financial circumstances to normally receive private tutoring) from council estates in Pimlico in English and Debating.
2013-14: I worked with a group of 3 brothers (ages 8, 10 & 10) towards their 11+ entrance papers for Sutton Grammar Schools. The boys were lively and competitive with each other, and I built up an excellent rapport with them. The elder twins both gained entrance to the very competitive Wilson's school.
2012: Between January-June 2012, I worked with a 10 year old girl on her KS2 Mathematics because she was falling behind in class. She was a naturally bright girl, and so I worked hard to build up her confidence as much as fill in her knowledge gaps. In the 6 months we worked together, her marks (particularly in mental mathematics) improved from on average 30% to 80%.
I also regularly run theatre workshops for young people aged between 7-12 in primary schools and in theatres. In this capacity I have worked for the Young Vic Theatre, Southwark Playhouse, and the Peabody Association.
2016-2017 - I work on a weekly basis with a boy in year 8 to help him efficiently complete his homework. He gets very anxious about his homework and can fail to see the wood for the trees, so I help him develop effective strategies for completing.
2014-2017 - I work several times a week with a boy, now in year 10 (I began work when he was in year 8), to help him organise his work. When we began working, he was very demotivated with school and was complacently sitting in the bottom set of maths. His performance has recovered excellently in the years; he's now in the second-highest set for maths, and is regularly used by his teachers as an example to other pupils of what can be achieved when you work hard.
2012-13: I worked with a girl from October-June on her OCR Media Studies A-Level (AS resit in Jan 2013, A2 paper in June 2013). She was clever and interested in the media, but extremely confused and frustrated by her teacher in class. I worked in demystify the topic for her and relate it to her own interests. She achieved a B grade (from a predicted 'D' grade) and will now study Journalism at the University of Sussex.
2012-14: I worked with a boy with special education needs (Asperger syndrome & dyslexia) from December-June on his AQA Media Studies A-Level (AS resit in Jan 2013, A2 paper in June 2013). He found it difficult to revise for and concentrate in exams, so we focussed on his exam technique and I taught him strategies to maximise the number of marks awarded. He achieved a B grade (from a predicted C grade) and will now study Film & Television Technical Arts at Middlesex University.
2013: I worked with a girl on her OCR Media Studies A-level from January-June (AS-level resit & A2 paper June 2013), because she had achieved an E on her AS level. She was extremely interested in film, but was very angry and confused by her class teacher. I worked hard to improve her essay technique and to encourage her to draw on her own interests in the exam. She achieved an overall B grade, and will now study Theatre at Drew University in the United States.
2013: I worked with a girl on her OCR Media Studies AS-level from April-June, because she was worried that she was failing. She sat her AS paper in June 2013 and achieved a B grade. She will go on to study Media Studies at A2 level.
2010-2011: I worked with a boy on his AQA English Literature and AQA Media Studies exams. His family were from Iraq, and English was his second language. He had decided that he wanted to sit the A2 English Literature paper, even though his college were not offering it to his year. He was extremely interested in theatre and music, and so we built an excellent relationship through shared interests. I supervised his completion of his English Literature coursework, and taught him the syllabus for the exam. He achieved an overall B grade in both English Literature and Media Studies, and now studies at the University of Gloucestershire.
2010-2011: I worked with a boy on his WJEC Film Studies A-Level from December-June (AS resit in January 2011, A2 paper in June 2011). He achieved an A grade (from a predicted D grade), and now studies at University of Roehampton.
2010-2011: I worked with a boy on his WJEC Film Studies A-Level from October-June. He achieved an A grade (from a predicted B grade) and now studies at the University of Kent.
2008-2009 I worked as a seminar teacher at Warwick University for two years in their English Literature and Film & Television Studies departments. During this time I taught weekly group seminars to first year undergraduate students, and developed and marked their written work.
I also work with older students on their GCSE and A-Level English Literature, Film Studies, and Media Studies exams. I am very familiar with OCR, AQA, and WJEC exam boards. I have had great success in this area (including one student, who had been predicted a D grade, and achieved an overall A grade after 9 months of work together).
I graduated in 2005 with a First Class degree in Film and Literature from the University of Warwick. Before this I attended the Harvey Grammar School in Folkestone, where I completed A-Levels in English Literature (A), History (A), and Media Studies (A), and an AS-level in Mathematics (B).
After graduating, I remained at Warwick University and was awarded a PhD in 2009. During this period of study I taught seminars and lectures for one year in the English Literature Department and for one year in the Film & Television Studies Department.
Since completing my PhD in 2009, I have divided my time between private tutoring and working as a director in theatre. Both types of work are equally important to me, and I love the balance and diversity of human contact that it allows.
I take a very grounded and personable approach to tutoring. I always work to get to know the pupil. This allows them to trust me better, and I can discover the best way to help them succeed. I use a balance of informal conversation and more traditional guided worksheets, essays, and tests as appropriate to cover the necessary scheme of work.
My focus is always on encouraging the student to achieve to the very best of their ability. I enjoy working with students over longer periods of time to properly identify their specific shortcomings, and to fully address these so that they can achieve the best they possibly can.
What I do when I am not tutoring
When I am not tutoring, I work professionally as a director in theatre and film. Most recently, I have worked at the National Theatre on their major production of 'The Threepenny Opera' and, before that, a musical for the whole family called 'I Want My Hat Back', a show for the whole family. In 2013, I was invited to be part of the prestigious National Theatre Studio Directors'. I am a keen cinema-goer and I am very interested in both popular & classical music. I am also a keen runner, and have completed several 10k runs.
"Tom has been amazing, I can't speak highly enough of him. He gets on very well with both of my sons and they love the challenges he sets." Mother of Year 6 and 5 boys having English & Maths lessons
''Of all the tutors we have employed over the years Tom has been the only one for whom my son wanted to do well...Alasdair received an A grade for his A level which would have been extremely unlikely without Tom's input''
Mother of Alasdair, 18, who received an 'A' grade for his A-level Film Studies exam.
''Tom has been a great help to our daughter, Amy...He is calm, clear and teaches in a way that has given Amy much more confidence in her abilities. He did not use jargon or long-winded explanations of the obvious; instead of making the subject more complex, he made it easier to understand and therefore, less intimidating. Amy also appreciated Tom's guidance in helping her to stay in control of the subject when she felt under pressure. He taught her how to remember key facts and principles which meant she seldom felt overwhelmed by information. Above all, Amy has appreciated Tom's friendship and support throughout the year. He has always been on Amy's side, encouraging and helping. Also, he has displayed excellent knowledge of media materials and resources, directing Amy to the best sources of facts and data.
We have no hesitation in offering Tom the highest recommendation and wish him all the very best for the future.''
Mother of Amy, 18, who was accepted into University of Sussex.