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Sophie

Primary or Secondary Tutor

East Sussex and London

I have 8 years teaching experience in Primary, University and Outdoor/Forest education.

My teaching experience began teaching a mixture of forest schools and outdoor pursuits education in 2009; I have continued to coach rock climbing to this day. I later spent the third year of my Hispanic Studies degree teaching English in a university in Santiago, Chile. Having supported several neurodivergent family members including those with autism diagnoses, I joined a school to support learners in the Autism Resource Unit, and then undertook a teaching apprenticeship to gain my PCGE and QTS. I taught in Key Stages 1 and 2 in Outstanding schools.
More recently I joined a national autism charity as a Training Consultant, and later managed the Training and Consultancy team, where I worked with Local Authority teams to upskill education staff, social workers and health care workers in supporting neurodivergent individuals.
I have extensive experience and knowledge in supporting, teaching and mentoring children and young people with: neurodivergent conditions, ASC, PDA, ADHD, SEMH, SPD, Anxiety.

Availability 

Online & Face-to-face Sessions

Mon-Sun from mid June onward

£110 per hour

My expertise

Autism Spectrum Condition (ASC), PDA, Anxiety, SEMH, ADHD and Emotional Regulation

How I teach students with autism

I have been the lead training strategic partner for the Autism Education Trust (AET), and have worked with three London Boroughs to roll out the AET training in all schools and post 16 settings in those areas.
I have provided training, consultancy and advice to education settings from nursery through to university, to improve their autism provision.
I use a person-centred approach, understanding that all learners are different, including those with ASC, and I adapt my teaching to the way that the student learns best. This can include communicating in a clear and specific way, using in-task steps, using visuals to support communication, giving extra time for processing, and more. I manage the sensory environment to suit the individual’s sensory processing differences and I ensure our sessions are predictable with no last-minute changes or surprises. I incorporate and normalise mistake-making in our lessons to address the fear of failure that some of my students have, and to learn how we move forward after we get something wrong. My lessons are meaningful, motivating and enjoyable, ensuring the learning objectives are relatable and clear.

How I teach Maths

I have experience in teaching Maths at all levels within primary and I adapt the lessons to ensure they are enjoyable for my students. I achieve this by involving things like games and useful activities that the student will be able to repeat in their daily lives. I integrate the students’ interests in some of the learning to engage, and use topics where the student feels more confident to maintain their enthusiasm and build on existing knowledge. My teaching methodology focuses on ensuring skills learnt are understandable in a real-world context, encouraging problem-solving abilities, reasoning, and eventually supporting students to independently create in-task steps for themselves as we approach increasingly complex math questions.
My lesson plans are always flexible, allowing for additional time to be spent on an area if needed to ensure we address any gaps in learning. I have successfully supported many children to feel prepared for and pass SATs exams.

How I teach English

Having taught English from Reception through to Year 6, as well as university students in Chile as a second language, I have extensive experience of teaching reading and writing. I encourage the sense of wonder and imagination in my lessons, using creative activities to engage and focusing on the student’s strengths and existing knowledge to build on.
For early readers, I use phonics to support sounding out words, and word families to quickly gain word-recognition. As they progress, I will explore meaning using inference, reasoning, predicting, summarising and other comprehension techniques to spark learners’ curiosity in the texts we read.
As my students gain more phonics skills, we transfer this into writing, using a variety of strategies to support such as Colourful Semantics and other visual aids to build sentence structure. I work with the learner to increase their independence to think of a sentence, say it out loud, check it makes sense, write it down, check it again, and edit it where needed. I use language jigs to support learners in creating their own steps to checking their work. I have supported learners to prepare for and pass their SATs exams.

How I teach children with focus and concentration difficulties

I have taught many children with differences in how they focus and concentrate. Using a tailored approach, I follow a plan that allows for flexibility should we need more time for particular elements of the lesson. I plan in sensory or movement breaks to help reset the child’s focus, and I use the child’s interests in the lessons to maintain engagement. I may provide options for some children who need a greater sense of control over their learning environment, or those who experience anxiety or overwhelm with instructions.
Our learning objectives and lesson plans will be shared before the lesson begins to ensure we have predictability and routine. Our activities and tasks will have in-task steps to allow those with shorter focus to access the same activities and tasks but in a way that suits their needs best.

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