Early Years - English & Maths: Ruth Miskin Phonics
Year 5 - English, Maths: 11+
Year 6 - English, Maths: 11+
Year 7 - English: KS4, 13+
Year 8 - English: KS4, 13+
Entrance Exams: Eton King's Scholarship (English, History, Philosophy, General), 11+ (English & Maths), 13+ (English)
(I)GCSE - English: OCR, CIE, WJEC
AS Level - English, History, Economics: OCR, WJEC, AQA
My teaching career began in 2010, when I decided to venture into the unknown and head to Cuba. For four months I volunteered as an English, Maths and P.E. teacher at the International School of Havana, whilst simultaneously learning Spanish. I taught Literacy and Maths to two Early Years classes, English literature and creative writing to the IGCSE class, and general P.E.. Outside of school I tutored three IGCSE students in English creative writing and poetry analysis. All three spoke English as an additional language, and all three achieved above their predicted grades.
When my time in Cuba was up I returned to the UK, only to then head back to the Caribbean to work as a residential tutor in St Vincent and the Grenadines. My tutee had previously spent a year out of school recovering from a road traffic accident, and he was preparing for a move to d’Overbroeck's Sixth Form College in Oxford. I split my time between improving his literacy, which had suffered due to his absence from school, and helping him begin his AS Level courses in Economics and History. He went on to study at the London School of Economics.
After graduating in 2014 I spent four months as an English teacher at a challenging state school in Leeds. I had full responsibility for ten classes (over 200 students in total) across six different age groups. The students in my GCSE class all improved their coursework grades, with one achieving an A* (not one was predicted higher than an A).
During the last year, I have helped students gain entry to Eton College via the King's Scholarship exam, as well as other leading independent schools, such as Harrow, Winchester, Harrodian, St Mary's Calne, and Dulwich.
In 2009 I left Eton College with A Levels in English, History, Theology and Economics. I achieved the top grade in all my subjects, and I won the top English prize in my year. Before going to university I decided to take a year out, which I spent teaching and tutoring in the Caribbean. I took my undergraduate degree in English at the University of St Andrews, and I graduated with a II.i in 2014.
Although I was born in Suffolk, I spent much of my childhood at boarding school in Oxford and at Eton; an experience I thoroughly enjoyed. During the school holidays I would assist my mother in the running of a foreign language school at home, with as many as thirty European or South-East Asian students attending at any one time. I soon learnt the appeal - and indeed the importance - of education outside school; these students would return home with a renewed, and often enhanced confidence in their academics. With the school now closed, I have kept in touch with many of our old students, all of whom are well-rounded and extremely high achieving.
Since leaving school I have been involved in education in many different forms: including private tutoring; classroom teaching in the international sector; and classroom teaching in the UK state sector.
Having worked as a classroom teacher, I recognise the essential importance of differentiating my teaching to the individual needs and interests of each student. Different students learn and work in different ways, and I always work towards this end in the early stages of tutoring.
Furthermore, I believe that the foundations of learning rely on an interest and a willingness to learn. I therefore strike a balance between specific teaching material and other, more general approaches which may better suit a particular student, and which may better match their own interests and intrigue.
At school I always prided myself on an ability to learn, work and revise effectively and efficiently. The importance of confidence in school work cannot be overstated, and I therefore like to focus on the specific techniques and skills that I believe will better equip that student to succeed. In many ways each subject is its own craft, and I try to help my students master that craft, whilst simultaneously learning and exploring stimulating material.
Finally, and perhaps most importantly, every student needs the right environment in which to learn. Whilst I believe in stretching each student beyond their comfort zone, I also believe that students themselves must feel comfortable with their teacher. I am extremely personable, open-minded and determined to communicate effectively with anyone I work with. After all, it is up to me to make my sessions as productive and useful as they can be.
What I do when I am not tutoring
When I am not working, I live a varied and focused life. I am a voracious reader and a passionate music fan, always seeking to broaden my knowledge and collections in both areas. Whilst not being the most able sportsman, I am also a big football and cricket fan, and when time permits I enjoy playing the latter for old school and university teams.
As far as other work goes, I'm due to start training to be a solicitor with a top City law firm in London in March 2018, having finished my LPC in June 2017.
"Can I also say what a pleasure it was to have Francis help - my son actually enjoyed and looked forward to his sessions - quite something for a 10 year old boy in his Easter holidays!" (Mother of pre-test student)
"We would like to thank you for recommending Francis to us. He is absolutely amazing tutor and very nice person. We will definitely invite him in the future." Mother of previous student.
"We have been very pleased with Francis. Annie enjoys her lessons and he has been punctual and professional." Mother of previous student.
"We are thrilled, our daughter got into the 3 schools she tried for, Woldingham, Emanuel and Ibstock. She has chosen Woldingham. Frances was amazing and really improved her comprehension grades. Amelia always looked forward to his visits and I would thoroughly recommend him." Mother of 11+ Student
"We have been hugely impressed with Francis. He is perfect for our daughter as he is so enthusiastic and confident. A great role model for her! She looks forward to their sessions and told me that she has learnt a lot from him.
He helped with interview preparation as well last week which was a big help". Mother of previous student
We would all like to thank you for your excellent guidance, encouragement and tutoring over the last 8 months. Christopher has come a long way in that time and has grown in confidence all round which will stand him in good stead for his final year at St. Philip's and his life thereafter. (Annabel, mother of 11 year old)
Francis' dedication was highly appreciated, not only by our son but also by us; seeing a happy child after a tutoring class is always a positive sign. Without Francis' kindness and timely support, it would have been difficult for our son to pass his year-end tests and obtain the marks he had. Francis’ tremendous assistance and effort was remarkable. We hope that he continues his great work in teaching students. (Artem, father of 9 year old)
Having Francis stay with us in the Alps was a real pleasure - he was polite, easy to have around, and very organised. Francis tutored Alex for a total of 65 hours in preparation for his King's Scholarship Exam to Eton College. He really boosted his knowledge, confidence and aptitude in English, History and Philosophy. I'm delighted to say that Alex is starting at Eton in September! (Neil, father of 13 year old)