All tuition is provided on a one-to-one basis (and very occasionally, a two-to-one) and so our tuition strategies are individually tailored to each student for maximum effectiveness. This has proved particularly effective for home-educated students as we can approach any syllabus in a flexible and responsive way. It has also proved very effective in responding to any Covid-related disruptions that a student may have been forced to accept (after all, during the lockdowns all students were 'home-ed' ones). Hopefully we have turned the corner on that, but some residual problems caused by the disruptions have knock-on effects and this is particularly damaging when the areas concerned are English or maths. Passes at grade 4 or above at GCSE are required for further education, and if a student doesn't have these grades, they will have to study and retake them as part of their first year at college.
I studied English for my DEUG at Université de Perpignan. My third year was spent at Sheffield University under the Erasmus scheme, my fourth year earned me two maîtrises (Double Masters) one in French as a Foreign Language (FLE) and the other in English Literature; the two years of my CAPES were split by a year as an assistante in the UK. My CAPES was validated in 1999.
Over the years, I have also coached successfully students through their English Language GCSE and English A Level exams. Focusing on analysing language and structure, planning written answers, forming critical responses all contribute to boosting English GCSE grades. Obviously, as a linguist, I recognise too the importance of accurate 'SPAG' and good essay writing techniques. Going through elements of the English Literature GCSE and A Level syllabuses, such as literature analysis, effective use of literary terminology or mapping ideas for essays is part of the work we undertake too.
Maths is central to the study and practice of all the sciences. Strength in one lends strength to the other. This is why we talk of science being four subjects; our experimental protocols are both theoretically and statistically rich, and our science students are routinely put through their paces mathematically. It would be an unusual student who was strong in science but weak in maths; on reflection, we're not sure that such a student could exist.
We tutor maths from a scientific background. Although it is of enormous importance for those of us with overdrafts and credit cards, for a student facing their GCSEs, the accumulation of compound interest and financial depreciation are of less immediate relevance than the growth of bacteria, the mysterious Covid 'R' number, radioactive decay or the cooling of a hot object. Using an example taken from science means that we are both revising a science topic and practising a mathematical problem at the same time. A few examples may make this clear. The volume of a sphere is calculated by the same formula, whether it is needed to calculate the density of a ball bearing (RP5, Physics) or from measuring the diameter of a cell (RP1, Biology). If you can learn to treat a resultant force as a hypotenuse (i.e. 'resolving' it into two forces at right angles to each other), Pythagoras and/or trigonometry are quicker (and more accurate) than scale drawing. Lastly, the gradient and intercept of a straight line is always of the form y=mx + c, whether we are measuring the acceleration of a trolley (RP7, Physics), the rate of a chemical reaction (RP5, Chemistry) or osmosis in potatoes (RP3, Biology). That's five GCSE practicals right there. In this way, we favour strategies that cover core elements of the GCSE maths syllabus, but within a scientific framework. Knowing that we are being 'paid twice' means we have a bit of tolerance up our sleeve when we have to deal with the difficult stuff.