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Tutors for Reading & Writing Skills

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Parents' reviews of tutors are the opinions of Berkeley Parents Net subscribers. Your own experience may be different.
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Berkeley Parents Network > Reviews > Tutors > Tutors for Reading & Writing Skills


Reading Tutors Writing Tutors Related Pages

Reading Tutors: 2012 - 2014 Reviews


Nov 2012

I highly recommend Nancy Welt as a reading specialist tutor. My dyslexic son started tutoring with her in the summer between 1st and 2nd grade and continued with her until sixth grade. With her help and hard work in both knowledge of reading programs and patience with my son he became a proficient reader and read at grade level by fifth grade. In fact in 8th grade scored Advanced in English on the Star test. He now reads on his own for pleasure. Something I could never have imagined was possible. Nancy really knows what she is doing and reaches the child on his/her level. I can't say enough about the help she provided me as well. Navigating the public school system with a child that is severely dyslexic can be extremely challenging. She was great with advice on what to ask for in my son's IEP. My son enjoyed working with her and she was persistent in her approach with him. Her knowledge and advice has been invaluable to me and my family and I can't recommend her enough. gf


May 2012

I would really like to recommend Clara Sneed as a wonderful tutor. She really helped our high school daughter with her writing, organization and Spanish. She has a great way of relating to the teens directly, and our daughter really matured under Clara's wing. She can be reached at Tutorclara@gmail.com. We cannot recommend her enough! Happy Family


Reading Tutors: 2008 - 2011 Reviews


Reading help for 1st grader

June 2011

My child is just finishing first grade. He is below grade level in reading and writing, had trouble holding a pencil, is starting to get that he is below other kids and it is starting to affect him in that way as well. His teachers have said that there is a gap between his verbal, math and social skills and his reading and writing skills. I would like to get him a tutor this summer or send him to some kind of program for extra help. I am looking at a few programs but don't know how good they are. Please if anyone has any experience with this please let me know (positive or negative). Thank you!!! Don't Know If I Should Be Concerned Mother


My daughter saw a private educational therapist in our home. His name is Bill Baldyga. We were thrilled with the progress our daughter made. In less than three months she jumped several grade levels in reading. All the experts say that the earlier you intervene, the easier it is to correct any issues that your child might have. You can contact Bill through his website at: www.halcyonlearning.com MW
I would recommend calling Dr. Ann Gordon of Educational Services Associates on Grand Avenue. She has a real gift with children, and many years of experience. 873-0801 anon.
June 2011

Hello, my family has worked with a tutor named Rachael Berger for a year. She is an English teacher and also provides private in-home tutoring. She has been a ton of helping our kindergartener with reading; support with phonics and lots of word sorts. She is patient and kind and my daughter loves her! Her number is 510-418-6495. I know she works with kids of all ages. Madeleine


June 2011

I would like to recommend my 9 year old son's tutor. She works with him in reading and writing, phonics and comprehension sentence writing, punctuation, grammer, and penmanship. My son is reluctant to work with me but is so willing to work with her. She is patient and kind with him. She uses positive reinforcement. And is really encouraging to him when he is having a hard time. We have been working with her through the school year and are very excited about his progress. Her name is Lauren Bassard. lbassard@aol.com 510-921-4911
Holly


Reading program for 4 year old

April 2011

I am looking for a Saturday reading program for my 4 year old. Does anyone know of one that is located in Oakland or Berkeley? Thanks.


My son attended the Cal State East Bay's fall 2010 reading program and loved it! He not only learned a great deal, but he had fun doing so and made some friends in the process. He learned how to read shortly after completing the reading program! The teacher is great at engaging the students and truly understands literacy development for 4 and 5 year olds. I highly recommend this program. I dont recall the exact name of the program, but it is also being offered during the summer. Good luck! Happy Mommy

Tutor for 3rd grader reading below grade level

April 2011

I have a 3rd grader who is reading below grade level and is behind in writing skills. I am looking for an experienced Ed. Therapist / tutor ASAP who is patient, creative, and has excellent credentials and who is effective! I live in Berkeley and would like to find someone local. Susan


My third grade son has been working with a tutor here in Berkeley twice a week for the last year and half. He was working on writing and reading skills with Peggy Connell and has made tremendous progress. She has been extremely flexible, used her great sense of humor to keep him motivated and always used his interests as a vehicle to teach varing content. When starting with her, he was extremely reluctant to even write a paragraph, and has since then developed the skills to organize and carry-out short assignments independently. Part of his issue is his lack of organizational skills surrounding writing which were greatly helped through her use of graphic organizers and brainstorming. She always provided a warm and nurturing environment, which helped keep distractions to a minimum. She holds a masters degree in special education and educational therapy. You can contact her at (510) 644- 1010 or peggyjconnell@yahoo.com mom who has been there

Reading tutor for 2nd grader

Dec 24 2009

I would like to highly recommend Sharon Lawless for tutoring reading. Our daughter was struggling to learn the basics of reading after kindergarten and we hired Sharon to tutor her over the summer between kindergarten and first grade. Sharon was amazing with her! She was very encouraging and we credit her with teaching our daughter not only to read, but also to enjoy it and she is now thriving. Her reading words per minute have continued to climb and she is now one of the best readers in her 2nd grade class.

Sharon can be reached at slawless18@gmail.com or 510-336-1201.

Here is more information on Sharon: She works mainly with students who have reading challenges. She uses The Susan Barton Reading and Spelling System which is a research-based program that teaches students phonemic awareness in a sequential manner. She can help students with the writing process and elementary math. She has 30 years of teaching experience, Robin


Literacy tutor to get son to grade level

March 2009

Can anyone recommend a gentle, patient, intuitive literacy tutor? My son is having some trouble keeping up with his grade-level reading and seems to get frustrated easily. I'm really hoping to find somebody to work with him one on one (hourly maybe?), and I don't want to use any of those big ''tutoring companies''. Also, what type of fee should I expect to pay for such services? Thanks so much for any info-- regina


You could try Ariel Lenchner. Her office is near Broadway and Piedmont in Oakland. She worked with my son one on one, did a lot of fun games with him, and helped him quite a bit. He really liked her, and now reads extremely well. She's very patient with young children. I believe we spent about $65 an hour with her, a couple of years ago. Her website is http://www.earlyliteracywizard.com/ Karen
You should call Lyra King at 510-706-3041. She helped my daughter immensely. Lyra is a talented and compassionate tutor. She charges $60/hour and it is well worth it. Best of luck! Kelly
Our family has been blessed to find Jamie Keller to work with our son. He needed a great deal of help with his literacy issues. She is patient, caring, intuitive and most importantly, my son loves working with her. check out her site at www.learnWithMe.com and you will see just how qualified she is (and creative too!) My son is doing great and we are now working with Jamie on study skills to prepare him for middle school. She has a great summer program that I highly recommend. You can email her directly at jamiekeller1@gmail.com michelle
I think Ivy Sandz / Literacy Access is just who and what you are looking for. http://www.literacyaccess.com/references.html I cannot say enough wonderful things about Ivy. My daughter has been seeing her for many years, doing individual sessions, group writers' workshops, homeschool support, art journaling, altered books. Ivy develops rapport easily with students, and is very versatile in using all kinds of techniques to help with reading and writing. She works well with kids of all ages and kinds of learning styles too.
I know someone who has worked with a student at Carl B. Munck for just about a year taking most of the summer off. The student is now caught up and thriving. The sessions were about 45 minutes each, reasonable price. Great bond between student and tutor which helped make the difference. Call Arlene Pimentel at 409-3829 or email arlenepim@aol.com Happy Reader

Speech,development,reading therapist

Feb 2009

Hello dear parents, Do you have any referrals for a speech therapist and a reading tutor who would work with a five year old pre-kindergarten boy in our home in El Cerrito? A student speech therapist or a developmental student teacher would be fine too. Thank you very much !


I highly recommed Bill Baldyga of Halcyon Learning as a reading specialist. My kid loves him, and now he reads! He comes to your house too. His website is halcyonlearning.com and his phone number is on the site. Been There

Extra reading help for kindergartener

Feb 2008

As a mother of a kindergarten boy who is not yet reading - just why did the state change to this model 5 years ago? I'm wondering what kind of extra help is available through the schools for boys who don't pick it up by memorizing. We are in Oakland Unified School District. Independent recommendations of outside tutors also welcome, thanks. -concerned mom


I learned w/a bit of shock this fall that kindergarteners are supposed to learn to read. So now I'm looking for a tutor with experience with kindergarteners. nc
You might consider enrolling him in a summer program. My son attended one taught by a reading specialist named Ariel Lenchner last summer and it helped him quite a bit. You can find out about her on her website at http://earlyliteracywizard.com/contact.html And I'm sure there are other such programs out there. Karen

Writing Tutors: 2012 - 2014 Reviews


Sept 2013

Kevin Arnold is a tutor who has worked very well with my son who is 15 years old and attends the IB program at Berkeley High. Like many boys he was a reluctant writer who would either procrastinate and/or write something quickly with his eyes half closed and then be unwilling to edit. With Kevin's help he learned about fun ways to brainstorm, break down the process and use key concepts (borrowed from basketball, which helped!). Now my son is eager to write and is proud of his product at the end. Kevin and he met at a cafe which was ''cool''. If you have a teenager who needs tutoring, look up: http://berkeleycommunitytutor.com Carina


Writing (composition) tutor for 9, 12 yr olds

Sept 2013

Looking for a patient, methodical composition/writing tutor for two extremely bright kids, one 9 years old, one 12 years old, who are off the charts for reading level/ability, but need help learning how to write papers, essays. Thank you! Grandma Jane


I highly recommend Teja Watson. She is an experienced teacher/tutor, as well as a professional editor and writer. And, she is great with kids! She's at trw@twobirdsediting.com. Mom of Writers

Writing coach for 15 year old

Aug 2013

My 15 year old daughter could use some help with writing. She's very creative but seems to have trouble translating that into her writing. She goes to a good school and generally gets strong grades in English, but from what I've read I don't think her writing is at college level, or at the level of producing a competitive admission essay. She could use help with learning how better to express herself in writing and also with strengthening the quality of the writing itself. Any leads on tutors or coaches? Looking for a writing coach mama


Your description of your daughter sounds like my sons 5 years ago! John Chang has been coming to our house and transformed my son's writing. My son is very bright (like your daughter) but would just stare at paper and could not transform all the ideas and imagination into words. But with John , writing has become is strongest subject and has toyed with becoming a writer as a profession. His writing ability spilled into history and even lab reports. John teaches in a way that helps students really bloosom their innate ability. He has a gift of making the child feel like he is doing it all himself! And John is a very nice person. He comes our house, and I found his fees very very reasonable. His phone number 913-1662 ecstatic mother
Hi- I recommend Kim Gonzales, a high school English teacher who is on hiatus from fulltime teaching while enjoying her 8 and 3 year old sons. Kim is skilled not only in teaching students how to write well and expressively, but has also coached fellow teachers in how to help students make the most of their writing. Kim volunteers as a writing coach in the Writer Coach Connection program, and is warm, personable, and young enough to be a 'cool writing mama' to your 15 year old daughter. She also has an artistic and athletic temperament-- she studies dance, paints with acrylics, and does kick boxing! Kim can be reached at kimgonzales@hotmail.com.
We have used Clara Snede in the past. Had great success with my 8th grader but I know she works with teens of all ages. She is in N. Berkeley. tutorclara@gmail.com Good Luck. Berkeley Parent

Looking for writing tutor assistant for 8 year old

Aug 2013

I'm looking for someone who can help my 8 year old with his writing. He is starting the 3rd grade, and has a real aversion to writing. I think part of it is the physical effort, although his penmanship is pretty good. But most of it is that he has a lot of ideas, and has a hard time organizing his thoughts into the appropriate sentences to complete the paragraph. And he gets so focused on the details, he loses what the actual goal is, or the question he has been asked to answer. Any suggestions?


I recommend Ivy Sandz in Albany -- www.literacyaccess.com; phone 528-8773. She worked with my son. He also had lots of ideas, trouble getting his ideas on paper, and hated writing-- at the same age as your son. She was great with him. em

Handwriting tutor needed in Orinda

Jan 2013

My fourth-grade son is very bright and creative, but, oh man, he has atrocious handwriting. We are looking for someone to come to our house a couple of times a week to help him improve or ideas for local classes/online instruction. I'm open to this being a high-school student or college student with neat handwriting. We're in Orinda. Many thanks! looking for a patient tutor


You need an occupational therapist not a high schooler. My son has horrible penmanship too
I'd highly recommend using Handwriting Without Tears materials to improve your son's penmanship. You can purchase workbooks from their website. I've had a lot of success with their curriculum in my classroom. Teacher
Jan 2013

My family and I have been very pleased with the writing coaching and tutoring for high school students by Professor Diane Wolf, a Berkeley resident who is on the sociology faculty at UC Davis, and is the author of several interesting and readable books. She ably assisted my daughter with college essays, organizing term papers, and creative writing assignments, and genuinely enjoys the young people with whim she works. She has a child who is a recent Berkeley High School graduate and is familiar with many local high schools, public and independent. My daughter is now attending her first choice of liberal arts colleges in New England, thanks in part to Professor Wolf's assistance in focusing writing and working through blocks and self-critical voices. contact info: dianelwolf@gmail.com (510) 847-8696 parent


Jan 2013

My son is now a student at UC San Diego. His first quarter report card was excellent and I credit the tutoring he received from Raymond Barglow as a major contributing factor to his success. Without the tutoring her received from Dr. Barglow- including help on improving his writing- he would probably not have been admitted. Although I am a classroom teacher, my son was able to accept assistance from Dr. Barglow in a more positive way than he could from me. Dr. Barglow has a wonderful communication style. He helped my son improve not only his academic skills, but perhaps as importantly, his overall confidence. I would recommend Dr. Raymond Barglow's tutoring highly, especially his guidance in preparing for the SAT or ACT. His website is: www.berkeleytutors.net, phone number 510-486-1050. Alia


Writing workshops/programs/tutors for 15 year old

Sept 2012

We are seeking recommendations for writing workshops in the Bay Area for our 15 yo son. We are open to group workshops as well as a private tutor that can help hone his writing skills. Any leads or insight appreciated. M & P


Abby Skrivan is a fab writing teacher! I was a Writer's Coach a few years ago and was assigned her classroom of 8th graders at Albany Middle School. She has a great way with students - treats them with great respect and humor. She teaches writing classes/workshops outside of school, or at least she used to. I don't have her contact info but you can look her up thru AMS I imagine. Lise
Bara Sapir, the founder of TestPrep SF and NY, offers a variety of tutoring in classes and 1:1. My middle school son took a reading program that was phenomenal for his preparation to take the SSAT (independent high school entrance exam). When he came home after the class, he was really excited about the method and told me how much faster and better he scored on his practice tests. Most importantly, he feels more confident going into the real SSAT. Well, I just got his test results and indeed his score increased 12%, plus he can use the skills broadly for all his reading needs. Their phone is 415-483.9256. More info on Mindflow is available at http://testprepny.com/pages/GMAT_LSAT_GRE_MindFlow.htm. Good Luck to you and yours! parent.hamburger
August 2012

Recommending tutor: Itir Yakar (despite area code, she is in East Bay, Oakland Grand Lake area, and can travel to you) Tel: 1-415-400-6715 email: itiryakar@yahoo.com Itir (Turkish name, female)is a super patient, super organized, calm and friendly tutor available to help a variety of aged children/teens. She was very patient with my daughter who has a processing disorder and language comprehension disability. She specializes in working with teens around writing and reading comprehension. She can also help with writing college application essays, or even assist first year law student's writing challenges. She has a background in journalism and law. Victoria


Writing tutor for middle & High school

March 2012

I'd like to recommend Dr. Diane Wolf as a writing coach fr high school and middle school students. Diane is a full professor (but not teaching full time schedule) at UC Davis in sociology and the author of several fascinating books. She is also a person who has a great ability to build rapport and encourage students, and she gives meaningful, useful, and reassuring while honest feedback readily. She has been working with my daughter for the past academic year on all kinds f writing, including personal essays for college admissions, papers on topics as diverse as comparative children;s literature,, art history, and epic poetry. I found her through this list, so search the archives for contact information. Judith


Writing tutor for 5th grader

March 2012

We are looking for a well educated, kind writing tutor who will come to our home in North Berkeley to help our daughter to learn the art of writing. She is struggling with focus and self confidence as a writer. She needs support around grammar, spelling and punctuation. How can we make this fun and yet learn important skills for middle school? Thanks! a 5th grade mom


John Chang started tutoring my son around end of 5th grade. My son's school really never taught him grammar, but even more, he used to just stare at the piece of paper and had fear about writing. I am so grateful that I found John. He not only comes to our house, and spend a full hour at a very reasonable rate, but have transformed my son to a writer who is pretty much at the top of his class. (He now goes to a very competitive high school too!) His grammar, sentence structure, composition are all amazing. I am awed when I read his work. He also now excels in critical reading comprehension (thank you John!) at such level that the PSAT he just took was really astonishing. His ability to write now spills over to history, where his papers are really clear, well written and organized. I really highly recommend John. He is easy going but thorough, and always on time. My son has really bonded with him and looks forward to him coming to our house. I think he actually have some space right now. His phone number is 913-1662. grateful mom
To the parents looking for writing help for their fifth-grade student: Jamie Keller has been working with my 5th grade son for six months. During that time, she has taken a child who wouldn't get out of the car and turned him into a child who doesn't want to stop writing when he's with her and can't wait to read what he's written to me and to his father. Her website for more info is www.learnwithme.com. Constance

Writing tutor, SAT Prep, and college apps

Jan 2012

My daughter loves to write, especially creatively, but needs help with structure in essay/analytical writing -- using an outline, organizing her thoughts and editing. Part of this is due to being dyslexic and also to look toward higher expectations of college. Can you please recommend a tutor for after school - someone who's motivational is great close to BART would be a plus. Thanks writing tutor


My stepson worked on his college essays for about ten months--from the Spring of 2010 through December of 2011--with Lesley Quinn. By the time they were done with his Common App essay and all his supplemental essays, the kid could actually write! I suspect he learned more about crafting a persuasive piece of writing 1:1 from her than from all his English classes combined. She was warm and encouraging but held him to a high standard. She also taught him about how to meet deadlines. www.lesleyquinn.com Good luck. --No Arguments in Our Household

Writing Tutors: 2008 - 2011 Reviews


Writing tutor, SAT Prep, and college apps

Oct 2011

I highly recommend JEFFREY SEGALL to tutor your high school student in English reading and writing, SAT preparation, and college applications. We hired Jeff when my son was struggling with a notoriously tough English teacher during his junior year. Jeff helped him understand the writing assignments, organize his thoughts, and edit his drafts. Jeff encouraged and motivated my son to think on his own in a safe environment where there was not just one answer to a question. The benefits my son received in terms of confidence and writing skills are now serving him well in his senior year. Jeff came to our home (working around my son's busy schedule), was dependable and professional, and had very reasonable rates. Jeff can provide additional references. Contact: Jeffrey Segall at 925-254-1907 or 510-206-8847 or jasegall[at]yahoo.com. Susan


Recommendation needed for Berkeley writing tutor

August 2011

can anyone recommend a strong writing tutor for a very bright high school senior who does well on quick write and standardized testing, has an outstanding vocabulary and reading comprehension, has consistently read several years above grade level since third grade, but struggles with the skill of synthesizing ideas into expository writing? she is taking freshman composition in summer session at a community college now, and the discrete skill of transposing her insights into an essay is still a stumbling block for her and causes much anxiety though she is generally a bright, happy, talented person who has had major scholastic achievements when this does not get in the way. we really need help for fall term. she is contemplating taking a year or more away from college if she can't master this skill.


Please check out Classroom Matters at www.classroommatters.com Our 17 y.o. daughter is smart but became overwhelmed with her classes this year. Classroom Matters definitely got her through the rest of the year without losing her self esteem and motivation. They matched her to a wonderful tutor who helped her with her writing assignments. She also attended the supervised study sessions and received help with other subjects. Classroom Matters has a happy buzz to it and the students look like they are glad to be there! The support of Classroom Matters was a life boat. pleased parent
I highly recommend Andrea Roemer, an English teacher at Tilden Preparatory School in Albany who also tutors. My daughter was taught English by Andrea Roemer, and she for the first time felt very successful in English due to Andrea's methods. Andrea was able to work through the English curriculum with my daughter through in depth discussion and written work. Andrea was also able to build a relationship with my daughter which greatly supported her in both her education and her life. My daughter learned not only how to structure a report, but also how to understand what to say. The classes are one on one, similar to tutoring, and my daughter was very lucky to get Andrea as a teacher since she is highly respected by the administrators of the school and by the students. She also teaches AP classes at the school. Her phone number is 510-776-0332. Susan
Aug 2011

I would like to recommend Dr. Julie Hemker as an exceptionally professional reading and writing tutor. Julie is patient and extremely knowledgeable about teaching effective communication skills to students. Her tutoring has helped my daughter excel in SAT prep and English listerature papers. A professor at UC Berkeley, she deeply understands the issues facing contemporary students. Her contact information is: julie.hemker@att.net and 925 947-1629. H.


High school writing tutor

Feb 2011

My son recently worked with Jamie Keller, a writing coach whom he highly recommends. Jamie's fee was reasonable and her services were more valuable than the private college counselor's. He Says:

I'm a senior at BHS, and I was accepted Early Decision at Swarthmore College. My grades weren't good enough to make the cut, but I hoped to sell the college with my writing, my passion since childhood. But I couldn't write a college essay. After about ten failed drafts, I realized I needed help. We found Jamie. We met 5 times in total, working through numerous drafts of my essay. 5 searing, painful, drafts. It was the first time I realized how difficult writing is. Jamie cut, cut, cut my essay, and then we rebuilt it, this time on a solid foundation. She knows that every persuasive essay must tell a story, so we gutted the blatant pleas in mine and replaced it with a humble, honest tale. I firmly believe this essay made the difference. Jamie made the difference to me. Aside from getting me into college, she was a pleasure to work with.

(Jamie Keller's number is 510-847-2505. Her e-mail is jamiekeller1@gmail.com.) Carol


Help with critical writing

Jan 2011

My son who is currently a freshman at Stanford benefited significantly from the tutoring services of John Chang. I was always concerned about my son's ability to write critically at an appropriate level since it could potentially affect his studies in school and college admissions. Seeing how my daughter improved in John Chang's AP Literature class, I decided to hire him as an English tutor for my son starting from his sophomore year of high school. He helped my son through his high school English courses, the SAT reading and writing portions, and eventually his personal statement. My son has told me that he has not only improved his essays and analysis of novels but also challenged the way he thinks. If you feel your child needs assistance in writing, I highly recommend you contact him at grey_matters@comcast.net. Anita


Writing Coach for high schooler

Dec 2010

I'm looking for a good and inspiring writing coach for my daughter. She is a good writer and wants to get better. Inspiration and creativity work! sara


The one-on-one coaching we got for our daughter on her college essays taught her more about how to write than any of her English teachers at BHS. If we had started her with a writing coach earlier, her first year of college would have been far less stressful. In any case, I can't recommend Lesley Quinn highly enough. She's supportive, encouraging, focused, and she sets the bar high. It was hard to get in with her during application season but maybe it's easier in the spring. Berkeley Mom
I want to recommend Lesley Quinn as a superb writing coach for high school level kids. Lesley worked with my daughter on her college essays, and proved to be skilled, supportive and extraordinarily insightful. Emma loved working with her, and took away from the experience a new and expanded understanding of and appreciation for the process of writing and editing. Give Lesley a call... you will be so glad you did. Her contact info is: Lesley Quinn 415-341-1110 Lesley@lesleyquinn.com www.lesleyquinn.com SF Office and Mailing Address: 680 Mission Street, 8J San Francisco, CA 94105 Berkeley Office: 851 Regal Road Berkeley, CA 94708 Berkeley Mom
The amazing and wonderful writer, Lesley Quinn was a perfect writing coach for my high school aged daughter. Lesley is creative, smart and funny. My daughter really enjoyed their work together. You can reach her at www.lesleyquinn.com . happy mom

Writing help for high school senior

Sept 2010

I have a daughter who is a senior at Campolindo High. I am looking for a good tutor to work with her on her writing skills, expository writing, especially with English 4. Any suggestions for someone in the Lamorinda area? Thanks. anon


Top-notch recommendation for a writing coach: Ashley Coburn PhD. We've been really pleased with her work with our daughter in multiple areas, and especially writing. Her number is510-384-6069. Good luck!
Sept 2010

Our son has been with his writing tutor John Chang for almost 3 years now and he has gone from "struggling to express himself" to wanting to become a writer as a profession (he is 15 now). John comes to our house and read all the books that is assigned to our son on his own time. He is easy going and connected immediately to our son who eagerly awaits his arrival every week. John is also versed in history (since many of the writing assignments are related to history lessons being taught at school, this has been extremely helpful). Also as a consequence of becoming an excellent writer our son has also become a wonderful speaker.

John also helped him with his ISEE and SSAT preparation, and our son scored in the 90 percentile in vocabulary and reading comprehension. He has experience teaching AP classes (he was a teacher for many years) so I am looking forward to his continued help during our son's high school years. He has students from elementary age all the way to high school. He is very responsible (he calls when he is even 5 min late). His phone number is 510-913-1662. Happy mom from Oakland


Aug 18 2010

I would like to recommend Jeff Segall - jasegall@yahoo.com - who is tutoring my daughter for the SAT and for her literature and writing classes at BHS. My daughter has learning disabilities and can be difficult to work with. Jeff is patient and able to communicate well with her. Her skills and confidence have increased with his help and she is surprisingly open to his assistance. I recommend him highly and without hestitation. Amy


Writing tutor for 6th grader

April 2010

I'm looking for either a class or someone who can work with my son on his writing skills this summer. He's going into the 6th grade at a very challenging school next fall and writing is the one area he really struggles with. Any suggestions would be great! Thanks BPN!!! D


My son is a 7th grader at Willard. He has had a VERY HARD time in English, and really anything that had to do with writing. It was a confidence thing, accompanied by him not being able to express himself creatively. For the past 3 month, I have had him work with a young lady named Ali, whom is a published creative writer. His writing skills have increased 10 fold, and he actually enjoys going to tutoring sessions. You can reach out to her for some ideas.'ali lawrence' ali.lawrence77@gmail.com
Michael
Becky Gross is an absolutely fantastic creative writing tutor. And she's a great help with other types of writing, like book reports, too, if needed. She tutors middle school and high school students, and I'm sure she'd be great for your son. She has a loyal following and is much beloved. beckelecita@pacbell.net Judy
March 2010

For parents who are looking for writing help for their teens, I'd like to recommend Jamie Keller. My son went to Jamie because he wanted to be a better writer, with the added goal of improving his writing score on the ACT. By giving him short, relevant writing assignments, and reviewing them together, Jamie helped my son understand how to translate what was in his mind into the written word. She also showed him how to organize his essays and how to include specific information to make his writing clearer and easier to understand.

My son looks forward to his weekly sessions with Jamie. She is lively, patient, and non-judgmental, and after working with her, my son scored a 10 out of 12 on the ACT essay. He now has more confidence in his writing and is motivated to keep improving. Jamie can be contacted at jamiekeller1@gmail.com, or by phone at 510-524- 8697.
John M


Jan 20 2010

Amy Draizen has been a writing and organizational support to our child for the past 7 years. Starting in 6th grade, it was clear that these areas were tremendously challenging for him. Due to her thoughtful, experienced and patient guidance, he is now a superlative writer and can develop his ideas, write a comprehensive outline, and complete an outstanding essay on his own. She understood his quirks and strengths and worked with him to help him achieve in ways that he never expected were possible. I can't recommend Amy highly enough. She can be reached at: adraizen@mindspring.com
mm


English tutor for high school sophomore

May 2009

My son is finishing up his sophomore year and has failed English. He will be taking English at Berkeley City College this summer but there is no way he will pass without tutoring. He is as stubborn as the day is long and convinced that English is 'too hard.' He is bright but lazy and easily overwhelmed, will NOT take help from his parents. We are looking for a miracle worker who can help this kid. Any takers?


Check out ROPES for tutors and we think Rosa Barbara-Meeks is great with high school writing assignments. You can reach her at: rbarbara_meeks@yahoo.com Kathy
The person that I totally trust and refer friends to is Phyllis Koppelman of Strategies for Learning (www.strategiesforlearning.com). You can look at her website and look at her brochure for a summer program called Mighty Minds Enrichment Program. My son was totally resistant to tutoring, is very smart but couldn't get the words out of his head and onto the page. Phyllis worked her magic on him. Not only could she get those words out, he actually LIKED her. (I know, shocking.) In fact the very first day he went ''only once'' and came out to the waiting room laughing and telling her jokes. We went out to the car and all he said was, ''Mom, I hate it when you're right.'' If your son has any learning issues, she'll help. If he has a sense of humor, they'll get along great. She will see what he does well and praise him. He'll know that it's real, not a butter up. She's also great with parents. grateful mom

Tutor for 9th grader's essays and reports

April 2009

Can you recommend a good essay/report writing tutor or summer program for a 9th going to 10th grader. thanks very much. Parent needing tutor/program


I highly recommend Deborah Dallinger as a writing tutor/coach. She's an excellent writer and editor, and even more important, has a great rapport with teens. She has the ability to really relate to your child and give him/her skills and confidence. Contact her via e-mail at deborahd13@comcast.net or by phone 925-788-9131. - a grateful parent

Learning to write essays for soon-to-be college freshman

March 2009

My high school senior is still not feeling confident about writing essays for college, which is just over the horizon. I would appreciate any recommendations for a class, tutor or summer crash course in churning out the basic 5 to 20 page essay. Confidence Building


For parent looking for writing support for rising college freshman- Flossie Lewis and JoAnn Stewart at ATDP are the best. They are classic English teachers. Independent college counselor
This may not directly answer your search but I do have a wonderful person to recommend for help with personal essays specifically college or graduate school application essays. Lesley Quinn helped my son with his personal essay when he applied to law school and she was terrific! A skillful writer herself, Lesley brings to her work with teens and young adults a wonderful mix of smarts, kindness, supportiveness and high expectations. She worked closely with my son to define and clarify his thoughts and helped him to frame a remarkably strong, clear personal essay. I am happy to report that he was accepted to his top school choices including NYU, Boalt Hall (UC Berkeley) and UCLA. I recommend Lesley without reservations - she is truly a gem! Kathy G

English/writing tutor for teen

Nov 2008

We're looking for an English and/or writing tutor who can help our teen write better, read with more understanding, and generally feel like he's keeping up better with his classmates. It would be great if this person also helped kids be stronger thinkers--helped them approach questions with more curiosity and think about them more carefully and clearly. All suggestions much appreciated! --Tutor-seekers


I would like to add my highest recommendation of Nat Crawford, who did extensive tutoring with my son from 7th through 10th grades on English reading, writing, grammar, and critical thinking. He was patient, always right there at the age and level of my son's ability, very caring and warm, and a true teacher--he not only covered the material but taught my son to think in a way that has become a permanent, lasting skill. You absolutely could not do better than to hire Nat for tutoring. He can also help with other subjects, too--ask him. Here's his contact info (even though the number is in San Francisco, he tutors in the East Bay extensively): Nat Crawford 415 503 1928 ncdc3c@hotmail.com Toni

Writing coach for 8th grader

March 2008

I am looking for a writing class for my 13 year old daughter who is entering 8th grade next year. While she is very bright and gets excellent grades, I am concerned about the lack of sophistication in her expository writing. She just does not express herself clearly in writing and needs some help on techniques for improvement, especially as she gets closer to high school. I admit that this is one area where I feel let down by the public schools as no teacher has pointed out what I have seen as an obvious issue for several years. I envision she would do better in a group environment with other kids for this particular issue. Concerned about Writing


My daughter attended the Classroom Matters summer writing class and found it valuable. I think they may have a couple of choices this summer. Karen

Reading Tutors: 2004 - 2007 Reviews


April 2006

my son's reading tutor has an opening on mondays from 5PM to 6PM. if your child has any type of reading challenge, don't delay! statistics show that if your child is behind by third grade, he or she will only fall further behind by ninth grade unless there is some intervention. teachers don't have enough time to devote to one-on-one instruction/attention. we have been working with lisa glicksman for 2 months now. from the very first session, she had my son's rapt attention and interest. she'll come to your home. she provides all of the materials. she engages the child with fun and interesting games and activities. most importantly, they are making progress with reading fluency and comprehension. my daughter is asking for lisa to be her tutor even though her reading abilities are above benchmark! lisa can be reached at 595-8799 or lisa[at]glixart.com (email updated 9/16/06) Suzie


Dec 07 2005

I can recommend the following reading tutors who were with Reading Revolution in Oakland. My daughter personally worked with Georgia Morrow who is a dream of a tutor. Personable, professional, fun, and engaging.

Georgia Morrow Berkeley 510/644-3220 Morrows2[at]earthlink.net Credentialed teacher. Reading and writing. Pre-school through adult. Training in Reading Revolution and traditional phonics.

Nancy Van Zwalenburg Berkeley 510/548-4867 nancy[at]rb68.com Credentialed teacher. Reading and lower level math. 1st grade high school. Trained in Reading Revolution and Making Math Real techniques.

Lisa Glicksman Oakland (510) 595-8799 lisa[at]glixart.com (email updated 9/16/06) Tutors reading and art. 1st grade through adult. Trained in both Reading Revolution and traditional phonics.

Betty Ann Taylor Oakland (510) 763-8571 Btytalr49[at]yahoo.com Reading, writing, elementary math, social studies, science. Pre-school through adult. Sharon


Writing Tutors: 2004 - 2007 Reviews


Writing enrichment for middle school students

May 2006

I am part of a group of parents whose Piedmont middle school students need some writing enrichment - not remedial help. These students are all good students, exceptionally strong in math. Does anyone have a recommendation for a writing/research tutor who would be good for working with a group (4-6) of eight graders? I have checked the archives and didn't see anyone who seemed specifically appropriate. Thanks! Mom


I can highly recommend Kristan Willits (kwillits[at]earthlink.net) as an excellent writing tutor for your middle schoolers. My 8th grader is also strong in math, science and music and has average skills in writing (more right-brained than left-brained in general) and Kristan has definitely helped her improve her writing. Kristan is very perceptive in her assessment of how a person writes and how the various components of their writing are operating and then in working with the kid to improve the elements. In working with my daughter, she has been patient, positive and, from my point of view, productive. The quality of my middle-schooler's writing is more mature. Besides teaching her new skills and strategies, I think Kris is effective because she has also helped my daughter learn how to access and employ what's already in her own brain. We plan on continuing with her throughout high school as well! I think Kristan is looking to offer a summer writing clinic so email or call her about that at 510-540-9562 Dee
Jun 03 2006

My 12 year old daughter has thrived with private tutoring 
with Grey Matter.  I was fighting with my daughter over 
homework and destroying our relationship. John Chang at 
Grey Matters gave my daughter the extra edge she needed to 
excel in school and I am less anxious. He has flexible 
hours and a previous teacher. He come to your house(510) 
913-1662  
william


May 17 2006

Adina Lepp has been tutoring our 9th grade son this semester. I highly recommend her. She is responsible and articulate and has helped enormously in keeping him focused and enthusiastic about his writing projects. I'd be happy to answer any questions you might have.

Adina is a sophomore English major (emphasis on creative writing) at Mills College. She volunteers at BHS as a writing coach and has been trained with the Writer Coach Connection program. She writes fiction. She is available for academic and creative tutoring, manuscript editing and nanny work, and is available now. You can reach her at adina.lepp[at]gmail.com to discuss specifics. Kathy


Sept 2005

My son had a great experience with writing tutor Kevin Arnold. We learned of him through Parents of Teens site. Kevin is young, a former Berkeley High Independent Studies teacher, is skilled and knowledgeable, and tutors with an easy-going style. He connected well with my son who gained much from Kevin's help in just a few months, his already accomplished writing improving in both organization and mechanics. Kevin tutors as a writing tutor, a homework coach, college paper research advisor, and college app essays coach. ''Kevin Arnold'' kevinarnold2004 AT yahoo.com 510.655.6612
Miles


Reading Tutors: 2003 & Earlier


December 2003

Tutor for struggling readers
For anyone who is looking for a tutor for a child who is dyslexic or struggling with reading, I would like to recommend a friend who does Orton-Gillingham (multisensory) and also Lindamood-Bell tutoring in reading and spelling. She is an experienced tutor and is presently working toward full certification in the specialty. I am not personally familiar with the techniques she uses, but she spends a lot of time with me and my twins and I can speak for how good she is with children. I can also say she is intelligent, serious about teaching, and very, very patient. You can contact me at Kensington at california.com. Or you can contact her directly at tutorJS at yahoo.com.
Thank you,
Susan kensington at california.com


Writing Tutors: 2003 & Earlier


5th Grade Boy Needs Writing Mentor

Nov 2003

Our 5th grade (11 year old) son needs some extra help with his writing skills. He has excellent reading comprehension, good handwriting and ok spelling. He seems to understand the use of notetaking, webs, and checklists before embarking on an essay, but it often doesn't progress beyond that. He can orally express complete and sequencial thoughts (with some prompting) but has difficulty ''remembering what he said'' when it comes to writing it all out. We're looking for writing specialist/mentor since we believe a personal connection would facilitate the learning. Our son is into skateboarding, swimming, skiing and baseball as well as non-violent video games. Can anyone recommend where to look? Thanks. LESLIE


I can highly recommend a colleague of mine, at a local independant school. His data: Andrew von Mayrhauser (referred to as Mr. von) 32 years old 6th Grade Teacher for 10 years (3 in Oakland,7 in Maryland) Writing specialist- was exclusively a writing teacher for five years Has passion for writing and enjoying life Connects well with kids, especially 5th - 8th grade Tutoring references available PHONE: 510 261 4373 avonmayrhauser AT headroyce.org Give him a call or drop him an email, he connects well with the kids by introducing a variety of ways of being creative. Shahana
Hi, I have heard great things about Ivy Sandz, who runs reading/writing programs and tutors. http://www.literacyaccess.com/reading.html susan
January 2004

I'd like to post my recommendation for Kristan Willits, whose tutoring services I sought for my child after reading positive reports at the Parents Network website. My 7th grade son has a learning disability in written expression, which means that learning to express himself in writing in the traditional way taught in the classroom doesn't always work for him. Any writing assignment had potential for bringing on a meltdown at home and worse, my son was losing confidence. Kristan was able to break down the writing process in a way that made sense to him. With her help, he now has many strategies to use and his confidence has been restored. Kristan also welcomed my input and gave me good feedback and helpful ideas for helping my son at home. I have no doubt that Kristan's patient, supportive style and ability to tailor strategies to the individual would work for students of all different needs and abilities. She can be reached at The Socratic Method, 510/540-9562. Signed, Pleased Parent


Jan 2003

I would like to recommend Matt Eggers as a great reading/writing tutor and as a homework coach. Matt has been working with my son, who used to resist any help, and after a few months I'm very impressed with his results. You can reach Matt at 415-206-1856. Silvia


July 2001

I would like to recommend Melissa Levine as a tutor. She has a B.A. from Yale and an M.A. from Washington University in St.Louis. Extensive experience teaching and tutoring reading, writing, grammar, and literature at all levels--elementary through college. (She's a published writer and journalist, too.) Can also tutor Spanish and French at the elementary and junior high levels. $50/hr. Call at 510-666-9068 or email at mlevine at mindspring.com. Christy


Mar 2001

To the person looking for a writing tutor or a summer writing class, please contact Becky Gross. Her phone number is 510-849-4877. She is quite wonderful and really gets teens writing! PS My son also thinks she is terrific. Lynne
(updated May 2003)


Regarding the search for a writing class or tutor posted in the last newsletter: I'd like to recommend Molly Gales - who runs a tutorting service called Classroom Matters - a truly inspired tutor and mentor for teens.
May 2000

My daughter is a Senior in the BHS Independent Studies program. She has an excellent English teacher, Sara McMickle, who will be offering summer tutoring in Essay Writing, Literature, Grammar, and SAT preparation. Sara is an wonderful teacher and can be reached at 644-4500, ext. 3631.
Jeffrey


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