•I have lots of experience of preparing children for their 11+ and 13+ exams. I particularly enjoy this work.
•I have taught English Language and Literature to a number of KS3 students who are either being home schooled for medical reasons, or are out of mainstream education for behavioural reasons.
•I have also worked alongside a number of students who needed help and guidance with their university applications. This included preparation for Oxbridge interviews.
I was born in London but grew up in West Yorkshire, where I went to my local school. I am from a family of teachers and educationalists - I’ve even heard stories that my family in Ireland were ‘hedgerow’ teachers (like those of Brian Friel’s play, 'Translations'). My parents are particularly passionate about the improvement of inner city schools, and I share their belief that every child must be valued and supported in order to reach their potential. My school years were happy and fulfilling. I did lots of plays, public speaking and loved going to gigs at the weekend. I spent my summers in London, training and performing with the National Youth Theatre. I studied French, English, and Theatre Studies at A Level, before going on to study English at Oxford. I gained a 2:1 in my degree. Whilst at University I enjoyed performing in plays and comedy shows and I was lucky to travel with OUDS to Japan as part of the Summer Shakespeare tour. I am now a professional actress and have worked with a range of inspiring people - from Victoria Wood to Sir Peter Hall. I also write comedy sketches and have been employed by Fiona Allen (from Smack the Pony) in this capacity.
I think that structure, support and confidence are key to successful study. The thought of course work and examinations may feel overwhelming to any student, especially if they are finding it hard to get to grips with what they are being asked to do. I endeavour to break down the process so that the student can feel in control of their own progress. Organisation and a familiarity with the syllabus and mark schemes are essential. Where exams or course work are involved, I help the student to create deadlines within their week, structuring time for practice questions alongside time for more analytical, text centred, revision sessions. I am a big fan of revision cards – which can help the student to break down the different themes that they may want to draw out within a particular question. I am always friendly and patient. I think it is important to create an environment in which the student feels comfortable and supported – and able to express which areas are blocking them from feeling confident.
What I do when I am not tutoring
I have just finished working on a comedy feature film called 'First Night' and another called 'Albatross'. I am now auditioning and attending an evening class in Screenwriting at City University, which I am really enjoying. I’ve also been working on a comedy pilot for Sky Arts with my writing partner.
"Thank you so much for your help with my daughter's English over the past few months. She has been offered places at the three schools she'd applied to - Queen's, Francis Holland and Queen's Gate. I know that your lessons gave her that extra confidence and experience which made all the difference - thank you!" (Mother of 11+ Student)
'We are delighted with the help and support that Laura is giving our son . It is proving most beneficial and he enjoys the work he does with her' (Mother of 13+ English student)
Laura was a wonderful tutor with a positive and enthusiastic approach and our son really enjoyed the time he spent being tutored by her. Laura was most up to date and knowledgeable with regards to the Common Entrance Exam requirements. I do hope that we will have the opportunity of seeing Laura again in the near future. (Mother of 13+ study skills student)