Right now, there are two different models of learning in the world – the “enthusiasm” or “love” model of learning, which is all about growth, creativity, freedom, the enjoyment that comes from mastery, and learning so that you can fulfill your own vision.
Then there is the “fear” model of learning, which is competitive, has a scarcity orientation, is institutional, about checking off boxes, and outer-directed. There’s a terror of being left out, left behind, or found inadequate. If you fail, it means you’re fundamentally flawed. And it’s about kissing ass, meeting others’ expectations, and doing what your told.
Guess which model I’m about?
You are right. I am about the enthusiasm and the love!
It has become super clear to me that the kids I’m meant to work with are the next generation of visionaries. These are the kids with passion, who don’t fit in, who stand out from the crowd in some way.
Parents of these kids view their kid’s uniqueness as precious and inviolable. They want their kids to transcend the system, have the tools to flourish anywhere, and create their own life and reality. And right now they are experiencing math as a stumbling block.
These parents know that the world is not always friendly and supportive towards those who are different, and they want their kids to have the support they need to be resilient in hostile environments, and to be able to change their environment or even create their own environment.
Yet these skills are VERY RARELY, if EVER, taught in conventional educational environments, because our current educational model, for all its beauty and strength, is still at least 100 years out of date.
In fact, the characteristics and behavior needed to succeed in this new world are frequently actively DISCOURAGED (consciously or unconsciously), even in the most elite educational environments.
But these skills, and these passionate, creative, visionary kids, are exactly what the new world needs.
Because our world is truly, profoundly shifting.
The new world is all about being in your own unique zone of genius, having a vision, and the courage to unfold that vision and fight for it.
The new world is full of individuals sharing their souls and their unique gifts with vulnerability.
It’s about taking a stand for what you really want and what you really believe in.
It’s about the willingness to blaze your own trail – with like-minded mentors, guidance, and community – instead of following a pre-set career path.
This new world is about making your own game, or changing the game.
It’s about pleasing yourself, intrinsic motivation, and the deep satisfaction and joy of doing what you love. It’s about growing. It’s about self-direction and self-determination in a community of like-minded souls. It’s about synthesis and evolution.
On the other hand…
The old world is about filling a role, being obedient, and going through the motions. It’s about winning the game, thinking that there’s only room for one at the top. It’s about pleasing others in order to be rewarded with grades, money, or status. It’s about following a leader and regurgitating others’ ideas.
That’s what a lot of education prepares students for – the old world. But it’s not preparing students for THIS world, the new world.
And frequently these educational environments are downright unsupportive, if not openly hostile, towards the passionate, courageous visionaries of the future.
If you’re the parent of one of these kids, you know deep in your soul that your kid is actually going to need MORE skills to blaze their own trail.
They’ll need a deeper connection to their own truth and their own vision.
They’ll need to be more courageous, articulate, skillful, and strong.
They’ll need to be MORE resilient in the face of fear, doubt, disappointment, and confusion.
Because the path of a passionate visionary requires greater inner strength and outer skill than a pre-set path.
It requires a deeper and deepening connection to our own inner guidance, intuition, and even to God (whatever language you use – Jesus, Buddha, Allah, Source, Spirit, Soul, Guidance…).
I know, because this is what’s been required of ME.
In the world around us, there is just so much fear about what is changing. How the old sources of security, income, and structure are crumbling, or already gone. And people are fighting over the scraps.
Yet the other world of plenty is available. It’s right in front of us. The same tools that are dismantling the old order are the exact same tools that allow gutsy individuals to spread their vision, thrive, and be more rewarded than ever before.
When the means of production and distribution are no longer centralized, it’s not about waiting for someone else to “discover” you or give you permission. It’s about having the guts to validate yourself and be willing to hold to your vision when no one else is seeing it. And the strength to keep going.
This new world requires new skills, new ways of navigating, and new ways of being, which are NOT taught or encouraged in the vast majority of conventional education.
So what do you do?
I am here to help these kids who are unique, who are creative, who are passionate, who have vision, and who stand out from the crowd.
I mentor these future visionaries. I know what it takes, because I am creative, passionate, visionary, and do not fit in. And because I have blazed my own trail – and I am continuing to do so every day.
I am here to help make math master-able and magical for these kids on a mission – AND to use math as a vehicle to learn these larger meta-skills that visionaries need and that the new world requires.
For a long time, I’ve been hinting at this… or feeling like it was expressed already… but it’s time for me to just come out and say it, loud and proud.
I am not a typical tutor.
What I do is not typical tutoring.
My results are not typical.
My students are not typical.
In fact, I’m coming to realize that what I do is SOO different from typical tutoring that I’ve realized it’s almost confusing when people use one word, “tutoring,” to describe typical tutoring and what I do.
So it’s time for me to really be clear about how the way I work is different, and how my students receive an experience that is completely different from typical tutoring.
Because I’ve recently heard some parents describe their other tutoring experiences, and it’s so different from how I work, I am almost flabbergasted.
Here’s what I am NOT about.Kids have told me about working with tutors who just had them memorize and regurgitate a bunch of steps. Then the kid would just forget the steps as soon as they didn’t need to use them (like three days later), because they never actually understood what they meant. This is not how I work. I am not about “just getting you through it.”
I’ve had parents describe working with tutors where afterwards the kid would literally say, “I managed to find the answer, but I can’t explain why.” That is not what I’m about. My intention is always to have YOU be able to get to the answer, AND clearly understand why.
I’ve heard about tutors who just made sure that the kid got their homework done. This is not how I operate. Our sessions focus on developing and retaining the skills you need to complete their homework on your own. We will work on very similar problems so you are really prepared to do your homework solo. If you only practice those problems collaboratively, you won’t feel secure and confident on your tests and quizzes when I’m not there.
I’ve heard about tutoring which is just about doing worksheet after worksheet after worksheet, in silence. I know that this approach works for some kids – but that is not how I roll. Our sessions are dynamic and totally customized to you.
I know that some tutoring is just a recapitulation of what is happening in the classroom. But if that’s already not working for you, why do more of what ISN’T working? My sessions are completely individualized to each specific student, even if the way they need to the approach the material is really different from how it’s being taught in the classroom.
And I’m also not just about grades or getting kids into an honors or AP class. I’ve seen it happen time after time that good grades are just a natural byproduct of truly understanding the material. When you focus on mastery, the grades just gradually happen on their own. And if you get a grade that is not as high as you want or expect, it’s just an indication that there was some gap in your understanding that we can address together.
I am not about ad hoc support or being a bandaid. I know that some students receive tutoring inconsistently in big lumps, like four hours the night before an exam. My experience is that this does not create lasting change, and it does create a lot of drama and stress. Math is like working out – something you need to do consistently if you want to see results.
Finally, I am absolutely NOT about tutoring as a way of encouraging dependency. Some schools have told me that they are concerned that if kids receive tutoring, they will be dependent on their tutor “getting them through it,” the kid will hold up the class because they are so confused, and then the kid will barely scrape by.
That is not the way that I work. Students who work with me experience genuine mastery, make a positive contribution to their math classes at school with their confidence, preparation, and creativity, and earn grades that reflect their deep understanding and ownership of the material.
OK. Phew!!!! Now that I’ve gotten that off my chest about what I’m NOT about, let me tell you what I AM about.
Mastery. What I care about is MASTERY, and my work is about the mastery process. Like an elite tennis coach or an elite cello teacher, we focus on mastering the skills of math, increment by increment, to create permanent, transformational, holistic math fluency.
Individualization. I am constantly customizing what we are doing and what I am saying to the individual student in every single nanosecond. We find ways of approaching the material that make sense with how YOU think. We keep you in the “sweet spot” where you are challenged and growing, but what we’re practicing doesn’t make you bored (it’s too easy) or anxious (it’s too hard).
Emotional Environment. We work in an atmosphere of trust and camaraderie. Our sessions are lighthearted and filled with commitment, mutual respect, and let me just come out and say it, love! Laughter is typical. Singing and dancing is encouraged!
Consistent Mentoring Relationship. We work within the context of a long-term, consistent mentoring relationship where we both commit to your organic, aligned math transformation. Even though I am the tutor and you are the student, we come to the table with deep respect for each other and the understanding that we both have important things to contribute to our process.
We work in an apprenticeship model where the student’s self-expression and intellectual contributions are nourished and valued – even if, in the current moment, they feel totally overwhelmed and helpless!
Empathy. I can feel if a student is frustrated, overwhelmed, or elated, and adjust my approach accordingly.
Emotional Reality. I explicitly address the emotional challenges of math. Even though emotions are basically NEVER addressed or even mentioned in most academic math contexts, I have found that the reason why people give up on math is because of how they FEEL.
So it is essential that we address math feelings as an intrinsic part of the mastery process. If a student has a panic attack in class, breaks down and cries, or is feeling frustrated or overwhelmed, we talk about it, honor the feelings instead of suppressing or ignoring them, and develop strategies to help them become resilient no matter what emotions come up.
Individuality is encouraged. It has been my experience that our greatest contributions and breakthroughs happen when we are being completely ourselves. All my students are encouraged to express their individuality during our work together, whether that means jumping up and down with excitement, making up original math songs, taking a quick break to jump or dance, feeling free to move around throughout the session if they are highly kinesthetic, or even just wearing their favorite purple tutu to our sessions.
It is a vehicle. At its core, what I offer is actually not really about math at all. It is actually about learning how how to overcome the seemingly insurmountable, and we just happen to use math as a vehicle to do that.
Support is normative. Since we’re all in a continuous process of refining our skills and expanding into our own personal genius, it is normal to continue to receive top-level support even after you start to excel.
After Lindsey Vonn wins a skiing medal, she doesn’t stop training. Once you make CEO, you don’t stop receiving executive coaching and tell yourself, “I’ve actually got this down.” When you are a prima ballerina, you don’t stop rehearsing with your master teacher.
The kinds of students I work with want to keep receiving mentoring and experiencing this one-on-one mastery process because they want to continue to do their best and keep learning, even after they start to initially do well. Because it’s about continuous growth and expansion, there is no limit to the potential of the process.
Once you realize that you can go from hating math because it’s so confusing, to loving math and experiencing it as a source of joy and strength – “no one can take it away from you,” to quote a parent whose kid experienced this very transformation.
And this experience of autonomy and self-efficacy in the face of a massive challenge has a huge positive impact on what students believe they are capable of, and ultimately, what they actually accomplish during their time on this earth.
Does this resonate with you? Does this describe your kid and your family?
Then I invite you to begin the application process for my very special math tutoring programs. This process has been very meticulously designed to help us both get clear about whether the special, magical way I work is a match for you.
Just click here to begin your application!
Once your application is received, we’ll set up a special time to have a conversation on the phone to get clear about whether or not it would be a fit for me to support your child with math!
I can’t wait to connect!