About Me

A well-experienced fully qualified and professional tutor with excellent communication skills, focusing on the provision of academic support to pupils with special educational needs at all levels: primary, high school and university. Experience working with students with cerebral palsy, complex needs, speech and language delay, challenging behaviour, autism, dyslexia, ADD, ADHD,  study skills requirements, processing and memory needs. Keen to take on challenging tasks in a caring but expert manner. I am an illustrator and a member of Allied Artists.  I specialise in cartoons and comics: I find humour and creativity an indispensable ingredient for any wholesome educational practice. What's most important: CHILDREN LOVE IT!

 
4 Reviews

£100.00 Per Hour

minimum 1.5 hour sessions READ THIS TUTOR'S REVIEWS HERE

Specialist Experience and Skills

My experience working with children with PMLD and cerebral palsy:  I have worked with several students (either classroom-based or 1-to-1) who were diagnosed with PMLD (incl. cerebral palsy) on a one-to-one basis and in several SEN schools throughout London. Some of my Highshore School (Camberwell, London) students (2018-2019), for instance, were diagnosed with PMLD, including learning disabilities, visual impairments, hearing problems, speech problems, drooling issues, and behaviour problems.  Some of them used braces, crutches, or a wheelchair to get around and needed help moving around in ... Read More
My experience working with children with PMLD and cerebral palsy:  I have worked with several students (either classroom-based or 1-to-1) who were diagnosed with PMLD (incl. cerebral palsy) on a one-to-one basis and in several SEN schools throughout London. Some of my Highshore School (Camberwell, London) students (2018-2019), for instance, were diagnosed with PMLD, including learning disabilities, visual impairments, hearing problems, speech problems, drooling issues, and behaviour problems.  Some of them used braces, crutches, or a wheelchair to get around and needed help moving around in class or reaching things; they frequently used assistive devices for writing and, in most severe cases, worked with TA on a 1-to-1 basis.

Being warm, patient and compassionate with pupils diagnosed with PMLD (incl. cerebral palsy) is an absolute preliminary as they frequently have seizures, difficulty sitting still and often have uncontrolled movements.  Additionally, as they might have difficulty with bladder and bowel control, they may need to use a bathroom frequently.  In my experience, Highshore School pupils diagnosed with PMLD (incl. cerebral palsy) had regular sessions of occupational therapy (OT), physical therapy (PT), and speech therapy during the school day.

Considering the aforementioned, pupils with PMLD (incl. cerebral palsy) may require considerably more time to complete activities and tasks.  Therefore, patience and compassion are crucial. Also, special consideration needs to be given regarding missed instructions, etc. In some cases, arranging for verbal responses in assignments and testing can be a good way to measure learning.  Considering the complexity of their needs, it is indispensable that teachers, parents, doctors, therapists, and the students with PMLD (incl. cerebral palsy) should all work together to develop and maintain the best treatment and education plans.

My experience working with children with non-verbal pupils:  I acquired invaluable experience of working with non-verbal children as a result of my time at Highshore School – a complex mixed-needs special secondary school for pupils aged 11-19 situated in Camberwell, London Borough of Southwark – during 2018-2019. Every one of the 147 pupils had a statement of Special Educational Needs (including cerebral palsy). In addition, my work in an alternative provision context for Fleet Tutors (2011-2019) and for Hackney Learning Trust (July 2021-present) has given me significant further experience of working with non-verbal children, those with severe learning difficulties (such as marked cognitive and developmental delay), and those with visual and hearing impairments.

My experience in this area has led me to make the following observations and draw the following conclusions that I implement in my teaching practice when necessary:

(1) In view of the fact that non-verbal communication is a bridge to language development, it is important to encourage communication of this kind as a precursor to speech. Teachers need to model forms of non-verbal communication such as hand gestures and eye contact, exaggerating their own hand gestures to make it easier for pupils to copy them. When the teacher wants a pupil to perform an action, s/he should communicate this by demonstrating the action her/himself, and then nodding to communicate “Yes!” when the pupil has done it.

(2) Many types of assistive device designed to help pupils – both those who are capable of speech and those who are completely non-verbal – with their communication are available. One should always remember, however, that these devices are not meant to take the place of speech: they are designed to provide a springboard for verbal communication. Visual supports, for instance, allow pupils to make requests and share thoughts by touching pictures that then produce words.

(3) In addition to the many assistive devices that are available, there are also applications that can be downloaded directly to one’s telephone or tablet. Some of the pupils with developmental disabilities that I worked with at Highshore School relied on pre-linguistic behaviour to communicate, and used a voice-output communication aid (VOCA) when responding to another person in order to repair any breakdowns in verbal exchanges. VOCA aids are an effective tool that alleviates barriers to communication and ensures that the pupil enjoys full inclusion in conversations.

One of my non-verbal students (October 2017-March 2018, 20 hours per week on a 1-to-1 basis) was a 7-year-old boy diagnosed with right frontocentral cortical dysplasia, functional disconnection with interior part of the corpus callosum, disconnection of right hemisphere with resection of anterior part of corpus callosum and disconnection of frontal polar and orbital regions of frontal lobe, left-sided hemiparesis, severe learning difficulties (marked cognitive and developmental delay, visual and hearing impairment), and intractable epilepsy.

My skills and experience supporting students to develop their independence: Some of the techniques I make use of in my daily teaching practice are developing discipline, boosting confidence by teaching independence, and encouraging self-evaluation, self-appreciation and pleasure in learning. Short- and long-term target-setting (including the drawing up of daily work schedules), plus reviewing and evaluating progress to date, help students to understand their own learning process and develop appropriate strategies for ‘learning how to learn’. For instance, a pupil can be asked to explain in their own words what they have just learnt: this allows them to evaluate their performance and consciously experience their educational attainment.

My skills and experience supporting students with visual processing difficulties: Working with students with visual processing challenges requires patience and a specialist approach.  Some of the effective strategies that I have developed in the last 6 (six) years of working with such students are as follows: 1) having a daily routine that changes as little as possible; 2) using visuals with pictures of sensory input choices; 3) providing frequent breaks; 4) establishing starting and ending times for tasks; 5) giving advance warning of routine changes; 6) reducing the need for handwriting (e.g., use fill-in-the-blank questions instead of short-answer questions); 7) allowing extra time for writing to accommodate motor skills fatigue; 8) if need be, letting the student use speech-to-text software or a computer; 9) providing overlays (e.g., blank pieces of paper) for reading to reduce visual distraction; 10) providing pencil grips , slant boards, and bold or raised-line paper for writing.

My Teaching Philosophy

"Per ardua ad astra" = Through hardship / hard work to the stars

In order to effectively support my pupils’ specific learning disabilities by raising their academic standards and performance in literacy and numeracy, amongst other things, I incorporate their specific learning styles (visual, auditory or kinaesthetic) in addressing their social, emotional, academic, and behavioural needs.

Considering I myself have spent over 20 years in higher education so far, some (experience-based) effective time management and study skills that I teach are as follows: organisation (time management, essay composition); planning; text analysis techniques; study and note taking (selection of relevant facts) skills; other revision strategies (workload division); exam techniques: structure and composition of answers, using suitable academic vocabulary, fronted adverbials and advanced grammar; succinctness and clarity of expression

Most children with learning disabilities need skills in these areas. It is often their lack of these skills that makes learning overwhelming, challenging and builds a gradual aversion towards school and learning.

Something Sensational About Me

I am an illustrator and a member of Allied Artists.

I have volunteered in a number of national parks, including Rocky Mountains National Park (Colorado) and Aspramonte National Park (Calabria, Italy).

I obtained a postgraduate degree, Master of Laws in Human Rights (2.1), from the University of London, in 2018; in September 2020, I commenced Masters in Special and Inclusive Education at UCL.

Blogs or articles

Contact us to book this tutor

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    Availability

    • Monday 8:00 - 19:00
    • Tuesday 8:00 - 17:00
    • Wednesday 8:00 - 13:00
    • Wednesday 14:00 - 20:00
    • Thursday 08:00 - 19:00
    • Friday 08:00 - 13:00
    • Friday 15:00 - 20:00
    • Saturday 13:00 - 20:00

    Qualifications and Training

    • MEd (Special and Inclusive Education) {Cand};
    • Level 5 Diploma in Applied Financial Trading;
    • LLM (Human Rights);
    • 2.1; PGCE with QTS (ICT);
    • BSc (Hons) Politics / Sociolinguistics; 2.1;
    • BSc (Hons) in Computing; 2.1;
    • CELTA Cambridge
    ... Read More
    • MEd (Special and Inclusive Education) {Cand};
    • Level 5 Diploma in Applied Financial Trading;
    • LLM (Human Rights);
    • 2.1; PGCE with QTS (ICT);
    • BSc (Hons) Politics / Sociolinguistics; 2.1;
    • BSc (Hons) in Computing; 2.1;
    • CELTA Cambridge

    Choose me if…

    • You require a passionate, nurturing tutor who boosts confidence and self-esteem;
    • You require an excellent, highly experienced and fun English and Maths tutor;
    • You require a tutor who uses a variety of creative strategies to develop independence, memory (short-term and long term) and organisation skills;
    • You require a phenomenal academic and essay writing tutor;
    • You require a teacher that delivers results.

    SPECIFIC AREAS COVERED

    All of London

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    Contact us to book this tutor

      Your contact details will be sent to SENsational Tutors Ltd and will NOT be used for any marketing purposes.




      Sandra

      I would highly recommend Dora as a tutor. She goes out of her way to engage and identify strengths, targeting the needs of the individual. She has such a positive and enthusiastic manner. My daughter has complex needs and Dora has adapted the curriculum and teaching methodology to adapt to her needs.

      Janet

      Dora has been working with our son for 4 hours a week since the end of February 2020 teaching English and Maths Functional Skills. Our son has many SEN and can be tricky to motivate. Dora is incredibly positive and flexible and well prepared. Our son (aged 16) is engaged and progressing. We are so grateful to Dora. Very happy with her tutoring.

      Susan

      Dora prepared my son for his 11 + exams to Ilford County Grammar School for Boys. I am most satisfied with her ongoing support as my son is currently in the highest set in maths and English (Master Level). Dora has managed to develop such a unique and positive working relationship with my children that they cannot imagine any other tutoring scenario. They truly look forward to their sessions and consider them genuine fun.

      Sini

      Dora has been tutoring our two older children (a boy and a girl) for a bit over three months now and during this time we have noted a great improvement in not only the children's maths and literature work but also in their confidence levels. Dora makes the lessons fun and both the children are very fond of Dora. We can highly recommend Dora as a tutor.

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