- 10+ preparation for King's College Wimbledon and St. Paul's Juniors
- General motivation, study-skills advice and mentoring;
- 11+ English and Maths: ISEB and public school entrance tests
- 13+ English, History and Religious Studies (Common Entrance and entrance examinations).
- 16+ English, History and Government and Politics: public school entrance exams and interviews.
- (I)GCSE History (Edexcel, OCR and AQA)
- A-level History and Government and Politics (Edexcel, OCR and AQA)
- IB History (SL and HL)
- PreU History
- Oxbridge preparation
- UCAS advice
- Undergraduate examination and dissertation preparation
I specialise in and have worked as a tutor for: preparation for 11 and 13+ examinations in English, Maths and History; preparation for English, History, Politics and Religious Studies for public examinations; and in mentoring and tutoring for the Oxbridge admissions process (including applications, admissions tests and the interview).
I also have experience of online tutoring, including with clients in Singapore and Hong Kong.
In terms of pre-tests, I recommend building up a thorough knowledge of the 11+ Maths and English syllabus and focussing as much as possible on comprehension, grammar and cloze procedure and mental arithmetic and word problems. I use a variety of activities to target the time pressured nature of the tests and problem solving.
My childhood was spent mainly in rural Cheshire, where I went to prep school. I completed my secondary schooling with A ‘Levels in History, French, Politics and Spanish. As an undergraduate I read History and Politics at and was a scholar of Christ Church, Oxford. I have worked as a Professional Tutor at Keystone since 2015.
My blog posts
12/11/2015: How to Succeed at Essay Writing
The common thread to my tutoring is that it is individual-based; it is geared around a recognition that ability, circumstances and character differ from student to student.
The methodology and pace may sometimes vary, but the constant in my tutoring is a sympathetic, calm but challenging manner. My tutoring aims to instil confidence, both in the subject I am working on with a student, but also in their general educational and personal development. The aim of my approach is not just to tick boxes on a syllabus or repair specific faults, though both are often necessary components of my work: I set out to not so much teach my students, as to work with them.
The Oxford tutorial system in particular, but also my relationships with some teachers at school, formed a significant role in my own personal development. I developed a rapport with my teachers and tutors, and this helped me to progress educationally, cultivate various skills and map out my future. It is with a similar temperament that I approach one-to-one professional tutoring.
I also offer an approach that is family-based: that is, I work with multiple siblings in many families.
What I do when I am not tutoring
Besides tutoring, I am pursuing a career as an author of biography and history and working on the research for my first book, which will be published next year. As an undergraduate at Oxford I often came across tedious, heavy tones, which were far from accessible to the ordinary reader, and often of little interest to most well-educated readers, too. I want to write history that is simple and clear, and which picks up on the human, funny, exotic and vivid. I think that it is such history that can have most impact and teach us lots about ourselves.
I am a contributor to national newspapers and recently edited the collected journals and memoirs of Princess Josephine Loewenstein. Wind in My Hair will be published by the Dovecote Press in November 2016.
Alongside my writing work I enjoy travel, particularly to the Middle East, Spain and Italy. I am an avid reader and listener to music, but, being a firm believer that a tired, solitary mind makes for an inefficient man and, most importantly, for tedious company, I enjoy going to and giving parties for friends, eating in my favourite restaurants and escaping London for quieter places.
"Thank you for your miraculous work with my son over the last year. I can't tell you enough how grateful we are for your calm approach, your encouragement and your diligence. For my son to be accepted by St Paul's is wonderful for him, a relief for us and 100% testament to your sessions with him." (Mother of 11+ deferred candidate for St Paul's School)
''Tom is amazing, he is such a great tutor and my kids love learning with him. He is so thoughtful and efficient and has given the children confidence as he really understands them. His feeback is very clear and efficient and we feel it is a real collaborative effort.'' (Mother of 11+ and 10+ deferred entry students)
"But what is long overdue, of course, is our thank you for all your time, energy, and positivity over the last two years. My son has so enjoyed his time with you, even when he did not necessarily enjoy the learning itself! We are grateful. Thank you for taking the time to respond so thoroughly and as my wife mentioned in her email, for putting such effort into my son. While you were clearly focused on his preparation for the exams, we were always impressed with how much time you put in to get to know him and to understand what might motivate him. You have made an impression on him that will last for many years." (Mother and Father of 11+ Student)
"I feel very lucky to have someone so wonderful teaching my children, we love your sense of humour and sensible advice. Thank you for all you do for them." (Mother of 11+ student)
I just checked my History results today and I am so happy to tell you that I achieved an A in History! Thank you so much for all of your help, it has been invaluable and incredibly useful and I can't thank you enough for all the time you took to get me this far. (IGCSE History student)
''I do want to say that I think Tom has been a 'gift' - aside from his obvious ability as a tutor, his real skill likes in his ability to understand the whole child and to have a holistic view of the task at hand within the overall context of family values and life's day-to-day challenges. We are very much enjoying having Tom work with our son.''(Mother of year 5 student)
"Tom was really great and really helped me get a hang of the TSA. His comments and suggestions were very useful." (TSA Student)
"Tom is a great tutor and my son is working really well with him. We are all very thankful. My son says he is the best tutor he has ever had and enjoys very much working with him. They spend the whole day together. He is also helping my daughter to prepare her SCAT test. Again thank you. We hope to be able to have Tom again in the coming months." Mother of previous student (residential position).
Tom Perrin was simply outstanding. Passionate, engaged and very encouraging. Fantastic tutor and a very lovely person. (Mother of GCSE student)
"My daughter thinks that Tom is very helpful and encouraging of the work she completes. He explains everything clearly and is patient when she is unable to understand anything. Her self confidence has increased greatly." Mother of previous student.
'You are energetic, sensitive, caring, organised, stimulating and inspiring - you have become a vital part of our lives. Thank you for everything that you have done for our family.'
'Thank you so much for all your help. You were so patient and encouraging to X and you taught him brilliantly how to approach those source and essay questions. It was just what he needed to give him the confidence in his exam!' (Mother of CE History/English student).
'We could not be happier with Tom. He thinks beyond the subjects he teaches (English and maths) and proposes work plans that educate George in the broader sense. For example, Tom has suggested George picks a topic he is interested in and the English lessons will then focus around this topic. This holistic approach to teaching is great and George continues to thoroughly enjoy the lessons. We’re very lucky to have Tom as a tutor.' (Mother of 11+ student).
'It’s been great weeks with Tom. My daughter is progressing hugely. She had been challenged and felt satisfied with the lessons with Tom.' (Mother of 11+ pre-test student).
'Tom really made a connection with my son. He remarked that Tom is a wonderful teacher and he enjoyed every single one of his lessons. So much so that he would like to continue having weekly sessions with Tom.' (Mother of 13+ scholarship - Winchester = student.)
'My son did the scholarship exam for Westminster School, everything went well. Tom Perrin has been with us for about two years and has been an exceptional tutor both in history and English, I could not praise him enough.' (Mother of 13+ scholarship - Westminster - student).
'Sam is very excited about starting at Cambridge. He and I are mindful of your contribution to his success, so thank you very much!' (Mother of Cambridge application student).'
'I wanted to provide some feedback on one of your excellent tutors, Tom Perrin. We were fortunate enough to be introduced to Tom through another family at our primary school who recommended him highly. Tom helped our son prepare for the 10+ exam this past February at St Paul’s.
Our son immediately connected with Tom and, despite his initial reluctance to the idea of a tutor, very much enjoyed their sessions. Tom quickly got to know him and identified his strengths and gaps, which allowed us to focus on specific areas in preparation for the exam. Throughout the process Tom was always positive and constructive in his advice and perhaps most importantly, really helped build his confidence leading into the exam.
Our son performed well on the exam and was asked back for an interview. During the interview we were told that his scores were in the top 10% of all the candidates which is a credit to his hard work but also to Tom’s ability to teach and inspire children. He is really fantastic and we are so grateful we were able to work with him. We have passed on our thanks to Tom directly but I also wanted to let you know what a positive experience we had. I recommend Tom to anyone I know who is looking for a tutor.'
''Thank you very much for the good luck and training! You are my favourite teacher! I will tell you how it went on Wednesday'' (11 + student).
''Today we handed the offer acceptance form to Ibstock Place School. This marks the end of a long journey on a hard road in which you were the guide for him. Thus, it would be our pleasure to celebrate this success over dinner with you sometime''. (Father of 11+ student).
''I thought you would be pleased to hear that X received an A* grade on her mock history exam. I'm sure she will take your advice as stated in your report. I will be in touch if she needs more support in the future.
Thank you for your help.'' (Mother of GCSE History student).
''Thank you for all your help and support for Archie, he's really enjoying the lessons.'' (Mother of GCSE History student).
''Thank you so much for helping me prepare for my mocks because I don't think I would have achieved that grade without your help. I now feel slightly more confident for the finals, and I think that in the finals I want to try an aim for a level 7 overall''. (IB History student).
''I am unbelievably pleased to tell you I got an offer from Harris Manchester College. They sent me off to the old people! So, so happy, I’m in tears. Thanks again for your help, I literally walked into the interviews with your voice in my head saying ‘make sure you answer the question’!'' (Oxford History applicant).
''I want to thank you for everything over the past few months, I have really enjoyed our sessions''. (Oxford P.P.E. applicant).
''I read [my son's] thesis following your input. It is looking much better and I’d like to thank you for all the work that you put into giving him the guidance that he needed. Thank you very much.'' (Father of undergraduate History student).
''Des got a great deal out of the three sessions''. (Father of A'Level History student).
''Tom, great news! Lukas was offered a place at Whitgift! Thank you very much for all your help. Lukas is very excited....'' (Father of 13+ student).
''... desperate to tell you he got in... Miracle dictum as my grandfather used to say. Owe you a bottle of fizz!'' (Mother of 10+ Colet Court applicant).
''I just got my results and I got a 6 in History with 40 points overall!!!!! When I saw my grade I was so happy, overjoyed and surprised!! I never thought I could actually pull off a 6 in History,but now that I have I am so so so so so so happy. Thank you so so so so so so so so much for all of your help and support!!! Not just in the History exam, but in other exams and in the days and hours leading up to results the phrase that you told me before my exams just ran through my mind - ''Have confidence'', and I know that this phrase will continue to stay with me throughout my university life, career and beyond. I am happy to say that I have met the grades for Bristol and will be starting in September! Thank you so much for your help and encouragement!!!'' (IB student).
''Tom, thank you for everything! We will miss your bi monthly visits'' (mother of Common Entrance History student).
''I got my results back today and I'm really happy, everything went really well and I got an A in history. Thank you so much. (Common Entrance History student)
''Hi Tom, just wanted to say thank you for your help during the year, been great, with everything, not just the Politics!'' (AS Politics student).