French + Spanish - 13+ and 16+
French + Spanish - GCSE/iGCSE
French + Spanish - A-level (Edexcel, AQA)/ Pre-u
French + Spanish - IB ab Initio / SL
French + Spanish - Adults all levels - beginners to advanced
French + Spanish - DELE / DELF + DALF
French + Spanish - Oxbridge Interview Prep
In 2011, I attained a Combined Honours Masters Degree in Languages and International Relations (Distinction) from La Sorbonne University, featuring French, English, Spanish and Italian. I've been teaching languages for over 10 years in London. I have a real passion for teaching and motivating people to achieve their goals.
I work with a wide range of individuals from beginners to advanced, including A level, university students and adults.
All my students have done amazingly well at their exams (8/9, A/A*, D3/D2) and some have been accepted to Oxford and Cambridge to study languages.
I also train professionals from leading companies in the UK to successfully obtain DELF, DAFL and DELE degrees, enabling them to grasp new professional opportunities and expand their businesses to new markets.
Born in the 80s into a multi-lingual and multi-cultural teacher family I grew up always wanting to be at the top of my class, to challenge teachers and to question things rather than just learning them off by heart. I have a strong desire to understand the world, its ins and outs, and to make a contribution to its evolution and progress. That is why I have, over the years, developed a passion for teaching, sharing knowledge and a dedication to help others in their pursuit of learning French and Spanish.
Whilst at university, I led youth camps (over 8 years) all over Europe and supported students (over 5 years) in their exam preparations. Upon graduation, I worked for a marketing department of a company providing accommodation and other services for international students in Barcelona. Then I moved to Berlin and worked for a cultural institute, where I headed a department focusing on conference organisation about Africa-related issues all over the world. I built on my experience and then worked for a market intelligence company as a Project Manager, conducting due diligence projects for Private Equity Firms. In need of a geographical change, I finally moved to London to work for an International Development Organisation where I led their events fundraising strategy and implementation.
I am an enthusiastic, bright and personable individual with a passion for teaching and motivating people to achieve their goals whatever their level or ability. Having tutored a great number of students over the years I have found that each of them learns and makes sense of their subjects in very particular ways. As such, I always try to match my teaching with the learning style of my student. I consider myself patient yet energetic, and am not averse to using games and memory techniques to enhance learning.
What I do when I am not tutoring
I am a violinist and a pianist; and I am part of an amateur orchestra in London near St Paul. Other than that I love sport, I am really into Bikram yoga and English Boxing but I also love having the time to just open my book and read.
"Maria has been a fantastic help and the girls enjoyed learning with her very much" Mother of twin girls.
“Maria has an excellent rapport with my daughter and a very creative approach to French. My daughter looks forward to and enjoys her weekly tutorials with Maria who always made their lessons fun, often incorporating imaginative and entertaining language games. The sessions have vastly improved my daughter’s skills in vocabulary, grammar, spelling, and listening, as well as much improved confidence in speaking. Maria is organized, efficient, and punctual and my daughter always feels engaged, happy, and safe with her. I have the highest confidence in Maria’s trustworthiness, judgment and maturity, and have always felt at ease leaving my daughter in her supervision. Maria has impressed our family hugely over the last few months and I can highly recommend her.” (Mother of Year 8 student)
"Maria is an extremely enthusiastic tutor who managed under much time constraints to get my daughter to work harder and enjoy Spanish. Maria's hard work is evidenced by the fact my daughter's AS level result was much higher than her prediction and extremely pleasing. Maria is very dedicated to her work and a pleasure to work with." Parent of AS student at CLSG (City of London School for Girls)
"Maria Toubbe has tutored my thirteen year old daughter for a couple of terms. I asked Maria for help because I felt that my daughter got too few French lessons at school to get anywhere and I wanted my daughter to enjoy and be enthusiastic about learning to speak French. In that short space of time, my daughter’s attitude has been transformed. She loves Maria because she makes the lessons so enjoyable. My daughter has gained in confidence hugely and is beginning to have a solid grasp of the basics of French grammar which she was definitely missing from school. Maria appears to be very thorough, going back over past lessons to reinforce and revise so that the foundations are strong. I would recommend Maria highly." (Mother of Year 7 student)
''Working with Maria for Oxford interview practice was extremely helpful to me; while I only worked with her for a short period of time, I was really grateful for how comfortably and clearly she called out points that I hadn't developed as much. Outside of my application, I also occasionally found myself thinking back to things she said during our conversation, which I always appreciate. All in all, she was excellent help!'' Jennifer S.
“Maria began helping me quite late in my Spanish Pre-U course because the literature element was proving to be very challenging for me. In the short time that we spent together, she managed, in her wonderfully fierce way, to help me improve hugely mainly with my essay writing but also in my reading and listening. Not only did I improve linguistically but the confidence that she instilled in me helped me to believe in myself and do as well as I could in my exams! I highly recommend her! - Pre-U student at North London Collegiate
iGCSE to A-LEVELS
“Maria coached our son for his French iGCSE. She met him not long before the exam at a time when his school was predicting that he was unlikely to gain a good grade and he had convinced himself that he was simply no good at French. Within a few sessions, she had motivated him to learn and convinced him that he could succeed. When the results came through, not only had he got a solid A in his exam but he had decided that he would now study French at A level, which he is now doing. (Parents of GCSE student Winchester)
A* FRENCH A-LEVELS
''Maria has been my French tutor since December and completely changed the way I approached my A level French essays and French grammar. What had seemed so complex in class was immediately clear when she taught it. Maria has massively boosted my confidence with French (A*) and I’m going on to study it at Oxford next year! Thank you!'' A-level student
A LEVELS - A* IN SPANISH + A IN FRENCH (predicted C in both)
“Couldn't recommend Maria more. We worked together for two years on my Spanish and French A Level, and she helped me get the grades I didn't think were possible! She knows how to adapt her lessons to suit each student and keep them engaged and motivated. She finds the perfect balance between professional and casual, and manages to build a solid friendship with her students. Thank you Maria! (A2 student at CLSG)
A* IN FRENCH & SPANISH A-LEVELS
“I got an A* in both languages!!!! Thank you so so much for everything. It was amazing studying and learning with you and it was great getting to know you cause you’re really lovely and great fun.“ (A2 level students at JFS)
A* SPANISH A-LEVEL
“I met Maria when I was in need of a Spanish tutor for my A level exam and this is something that I am not ready to forget. Maria is a reliable and pedagogue person who managed to get me interested in something I had absolutely no interest in. She was always available for me. When I had essays to do for school, she never hesitated to communicate with me via email. She often set up targets beyond what was required of me, bringing me to push back my limits and realise that I was capable of much more than I ever imagined. This led me to make excellent progress at speaking since I was no longer afraid to speak in public. We can definitely say that her kindness and her warmth have unlocked my potential on this. The proof is I obtained a A* at my Spanish A level! Giaci, A-Level student
“Maria is an extremely enthusiastic tutor who managed under much time constraints to get my daughter to work harder and enjoy Spanish. Maria’s hard work is evidenced by the fact my daughter’s AS level result was much higher than her prediction and extremely pleasing. Maria is very dedicated to her work and a pleasure to work with. (Parents of AS student at City of London School for Girls)
FROM BEGINNERS TO ADVANCED
''I never really enjoyed French at school and just assumed I wasn't much good at it. As an adult returning to French for professional reasons, I've been working with Maria for six months now, and I have made more progress each week with her than I did in a whole year at school. Most of all it has been great fun. '' Sacha - Philosophy Lecturer
FROM BEGINNERS TO INTERMEDIATE
“Maria is an exceptional Language Tutor, with an eye for understanding the specific needs and abilities of her clients / students. I approached Maria for private tuition in the French language at beginners level, and am very pleased with my overall progress. Maria provides a comprehensive development plan to enable maximum comprehension and progression. I would be very happy to recommend Maria to anyone wishing to learn French for both professional and everyday use. Yvonne, IT Business Consultant
DALF / DELE C2
''When I was looking for help with my French DALF studies, Maria was the third personal tutor I tried and I was impressed by her enthusiasm and professionalism right from the start. After working with her for over a year and a half, I have now passed the C1 exams and am moving forward with C2.
Maria is a critical factor in this progression: she has not only made me more fluent and confident in spoken French, but she has questioned and improved the quality of my written work, making me understand the key differences between English and French writing styles.
On top of this, she can also happily switch to Spanish (which I study at a similar level - C1/C2) and give me the same level of expert help there too. I am more than happy to recommend Maria as a language coach at an advanced level.'' Huw, IT consultant
MOVED TO FRANCE
“I picked Maria from the (many!) adverts for French tuition because she came across as friendly, knowledgeable and someone I could get on with. She is all of those things. Having not spoken French in almost 10 years, it is safe to say I was nervous before my first class but she soon put me at ease. Her classes are well prepared, challenging (in a good way!), interesting and she puts a lot of thought into selecting activities and topics that are relevant to me. Most of all, her classes are fun and each time I come away full of enthusiasm and wanting to learn more. I can’t recommend her highly enough. (Associate at a Leading international law firm)