Tutors for Multiple Subjects

Parent Q&A

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  • I'm looking for a reading or learning specialist to do some one on one or small group tutoring with my daughter who is attending a Spanish immersion school (Sylvia Mendez). Tutoring isn't for Spanish language development, just reading and math tutoring but learning is all in Spanish. I looked through the tutors available section of BPN and didn't find anyone specializing in this area. Any recommendations welcomed! Thanks. 

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  • I'm the parent of a 16-year-old (11th grader) in the instrumental music program at Oakland School for the Arts who needs some extra academic support. Can anyone recommend a tutor in or near Oakland or any suggestions to get him some extra help? I'm willing to pay for a private tutor, but I'm a single working parent so lower cost or sliding scale options are most appreciated. 

    I'm writing to recommend the tutoring services of Naseem Alavi. He graduated from the Literary Arts emphasis at OSA in 2019, and has since earned his degree from Kenyon College, summa cum laude in Japanese with Creative Writing and Asian and Middle Eastern Studies. 

    He is a patient tutor and is excellent at providing supplemental material to help students work through challenging areas. He has three years of experience teaching and tutoring Japanese, as well as essay coaching and homework assistance. He is currently a Japanese and Arts teacher at the Bay Language Academy. 

    He is very familiar with the culture and teachers at OSA, and would be a perfect fit for a current OSA student. He can be contacted at naseemalavi1 [at] gmail.com or by phone at (510) 816-5950. 

  • Our teen needs 1:1 help with Pre-calc, AP Environmental Science ans US History. Patience a must, experience with anxiety and neurodiversity a plus. I have looked through the listings here and a couple of the tutors I was interested in have moved out of town for college or work and are not available in person. I am mostly interested in individuals, but tutoring places are ok too. Are there people who have helped that you have loved, or know anyone you'd recommend? Thanks a million.

    Does your child need serious help understanding all 3 of these topics or a supportive patient smart person. I hired PhD candidates at CAL to help my son with his homework. We had a young man getting a PhD in Chinese history, a man getting PhD in Biology & a man getting PhD in Chemistry over the course of 6 years. They were smart enough to help in most middle school & HS subjects, and super patient!

  • Hello - a few of us, families of rising 2nd graders, would like to form a co-op pod of 4 families to school our kids together. We are looking for a tutor who could come to our houses for 5+ hours a day, 5 days a week, to help the kids through lessons and other activities. 

    Let me know if anyone would be interested, ideally a retired or substitue teacher. 


    Hello, we also have a rising 2nd grader, Lia at Sylvia Mendez and we have a tutor Lia has spent the year with - focus on Mandarin and English and Art. Young gal, second income, but available several hours a day and affordable, will come to a residence. Reach me if you're interested to learn more and discuss please.

    Have you considered consulting with Classroom Matters in Berkeley? They are a gem of a resource that actively supports local K-12 students and families and helps them achieve their goals.  They are an amazing local (woman-owned) tutoring service that will create a customized program to meet your specific needs. Feel free to email for a consultation: frontdesk [at] classroommatters.com. Good luck!

    Hi, I know that Classroom Matters has been providing this type service for years. We have used their tutors before and every one of them has been wonderful. I recommend reaching out sooner than later since I heard the demand for this is much higher now with the news of remote learning this fall. They currently working to build creative solutions for groups during this unprecedented time. They are a small, locally owned business as well. You can reach Tatiana or Lisa at (510) 540-8646. 

  • Our current 7th grader seems to be struggling with staying focused in class, not being disruptive, etc. and we are concerned.  We'd like for him to take some time this summer to really focus on shoring up some skills and goals so he can stay on track.  

    Does anyone have a recommendation for a local coach who can work both on academics (I.e. how to craft an essay) and more of the motivation / executive function side of things?

    Fabulous mentor, tutor, teacher is Deborah Newlen.  She helped my same-aged daughter with all of the same needs. Smart, kind, focused and a great motivator of students. Best teacher/tutor my kid ever had. She is founder and head teacher at Bay Area Education Center (Pt. Richmond).  Reach her at 510-691-6624.

Archived Q&A and Reviews

June 2015

My daughter has been seeing Cassandra Liew since she was in the sixth grade. She is now a junior in high school, getting ready for college. Cassandra has tutored my daughter in all subjects - English, Math, History, Science, French, etc. and is now helping her with SAT/ACT prep and college applications. She has helped my daughter raise her grade in all subjects that needed particular focus and was there to thoroughly and effective explain concepts my daughter did not understand in class. For example, my daughter struggled throughout middle school to understand the math material. She was easily frustrated and too scared to really try and learn the material. Cassandra walked her through each concept, step by step, until my daughter understood and memorized the concepts. Cassandra never lost patience with her. When my daughter got frustrated or did not understand, Cassandra tried different approaches/methods until one stuck and encouraged her that she could do it and was not alone. When my daughter complained about the necessity of math, like all students do, Cassandra explained that math is actually one of the most complex and profound topics and understanding it is like a puzzle. Establishing a solid foundation will only help her better solve the puzzle. Needless to say, my daughter took the challenge. Cassandra helps your child actually become excited about learning, which comes from her unparalleled, natural but not overbearing enthusiasm!

Not only has she been an academic tutor, Cassandra has become an all-around mentor to my daughter. She has been someone who my daughter can talk to and rely on at all times, like an older sister. However, she maintains during tutoring sessions a certain professionalism when necessary and is not hesitant to demonstrate that she is first and foremost a teacher rather than a pal. However, her method of approach is not aggressive. She believes in guiding the student in their own self-directed learning rather than ''teaching.'' Cassandra is a positive and delightful person and I would recommend no other person to tutor your young one!
Thank, thank, THANK YOU Cassandra!
Her email is: cliew12 [at] apu.edu Her cell is: 510-566-8845
Cara J

Nov 2014

We are looking for a good all around high school tutor in Oakland or Berkeley that is great at relating to high school teens who are not that motivated. Any recommendations are greatly appreciated. concerned mom

Try Kevin, he is fun, energetic, knowledgeable and reallly connects with teens: kevinarnold333 [at] gmail.com been there mom

Paul the Tutor (Paul Osborne) and Paul Gee

Aug 2014

I am looking for feedback on experiences with tutors who work for Paul the Tutor. Past BPN comments appear to have had Paul himself as their child's tutor. I'm wondering about experiences working with other tutors who work for him. Did your child have a positive experience? Was the tutoring effective? What was the tutoring for ==SAT/ACT? Math? Writing? If you encountered problems and appealed to Paul, was that helpful? Thanks.

Are you referring to Paul Gee?

I have seen recommendations from many other parents regarding his work. I called him and asked for his help - Algebra. It took several calls to him to even get him to respond. He told me that he was booked at that time but he was going to refer me to one of his colleagues. He specifically said that if I chose to continue, my daughter would be on a waiting list to eventually see him when he had the space. The rate was quoted at $100 per hour. The referral was with a young lady named Caitlin.

Meanwhile, I was on the search for other options. I previously had luck with Craigslist. My daughter tutored with a retired engineer for 3 years (Brian Waters). He only charged $10 per hour. Unfortunately, he was elderly and didn't want to work past 7. As school activities increased, we had to find another tutor.

We quickly found a replacement from this network. Edmund Ankumah came highly recommended and worked out perfectly as he was available after 7. His rate was $40. Unfortunately, Edmund eventually went on to do his PhD in New York - he still keeps in touch with our family.

As my search continued, I found Caitlin on another website and her fee was $60.

When we finally met, I verified, that my daughter was only seeing her temporarily until Paul could take her on as a student. Caitlin said, no, Paul was getting ready to retire. If we continued it would be with her. So, I mentioned seeing her other ad and asked if we continued, could the rate be what she quoted. She said no, since the referral came from Paul as long as I continued with her, the rate would be $100, she would keep a portion and he would get the rest.

I was so incensed at the ''bait and switch'' - I vowed to find another tutor. The appointment had been set for 2 hours at the Starbucks in Berkeley. I asked her specifically at the beginning, was she available after the two hours? I didn't mind if they ran over as long as my daughter was being helped - I would pay. She said she could stay. About 15 minutes after the first two hours, she was in a rush to go?!! Right in the middle of reviewing a concept my daughter was unsure about! Never called her back. Just recently received an e-mail about Paul and his new tutoring center. What happened to retiring?

I know a lot of people have good things to say about him - but having not worked with him directly plus the shady way he handle my call. I definitely pass! I know you get what you pay for - I've had tutors who charge from $10 to $100 per hour. In my experience, the ones who charge reasonable rates tend to be the best fit. One tutor who charged $90 per hour (and a two hour session minimum) - couldn't help my daughter at all - constantly stated , ''I don't know, check your book.''

That's too bad about the new center - it looks like he's working with a time management specialist I had heard great things about. Not interested. Duped Mom

In regards to a previous post regarding Paul the Tutor's and Paul Gee:

Paul the Tutor's Education Centers is run by Paul Osborne (aka Paul the Tutor). Paul Gee is another tutor in the area. Paul Gee is not affiliated with Paul the Tutor's in any way.
Paul the Tutor www.paulthetutors.com

Paul the Tutor was one of the most helpful tutors my son has ever seen, and we've been working with tutors since middle school (he's a senior). Paul was extremely thoughtful and patient with my son, who has dyslexia - amongst other issues - and instilled confidence and an awesome work attitude. After a few meetings with Paul, my son worked with Ben, another fantastic tutor. Ben is super smart, personable and fabulous with working with teens. We have had at least 10 different tutors over the years - some inexpensive and some not. I think the best decision we made in terms of education was working with Paul and Ben. I could go on and on. If you would like more information, please email me. A big, BIG fan of Paul the Tutor

July 2014

We feel very fortunate to have found Clara Sneed as a tutor for our high school student. We were seeking help with writing and reading and quickly discovered that her broad understanding and knowledge, including literature and history, meant that she provided help not only with the basics of craft and technique (grammar, vocabulary, effective composition, etc.) but also with deepening his understanding and engagement by placing the material in broader literary, cultural and historical contexts. Equally valuable were her energy, enthusiasm, insight into how teens think, and friendly, supportive approach, all of which increased his self-confidence, improved his ability to comprehend and articulate, and established a vital bond of trust. And certainly invaluable was that he liked her very much and respected her opinions, and was willing to confide in her and take in her assessments of problem areas. I highly recommend her. CB

Great Tutor and Academic Coach!

March 2014

I want to write a tutor recommendation for Kevin Arnold because it is rare to find a compassionate tutor and academic coach as good as he is. I don't want anyone to miss out on a chance to use his talents. We started using Kevin for our 9th grade son at Berkeley High School who was struggling with his writing, homework and organization skills. Kevin continued to tutor my son through his senior year at BHS, helping him complete his homework in English and History, working on long research papers, creative writing assignments, and eventually even his college essays and applications.

Kevin was very helpful and connected well with my son on a personal and artistic level. He seemed to always find a good way they could work together to tackle difficult assignments, and eventually expected more and more from him academically. Kevin was also flexible and would directly schedule times with my son to come back to complete important assignments. I highly recommend Kevin as a tutor and academic coach. Don't hesitate because he is a good find! Kevinarnold333 [at] gmail.com -- 510-495-7923 -- Berkeleycommunitytutor.com Tracy C

Feb 2014

I can highly recommend Kevin Arnold as a tutor! My daughter had trouble in the transition from middle school to high school, primarily in English and History, both fields which require fluid writing. Kevin took a girl with little assurance in her own abilities and taught her the necessary grammar, organization, and construction to write an effective paragraph. He also keeps it fun, and she genuinely enjoys her time with him. I originally found him on this site and called him because the other reviews were so good. You can check out his website and find his contact info athttp://www.berkeleycommunitytutor.com/ Pleased Mother

Tutor for teens

Feb 2014

I would like to highly recommend Kevin Arnold as a tutor for teens. Kevin worked with my son for a few years and was extremely knowledgeable at teaching academic content along with critical thinking skills. In particular, he helped my son to develop a positive self image as a learner and gave him an appreciation for understanding deep concepts and for acquiring knowledge. Kevin is also very gifted in working with teens and has a way of being friendly and relatable while still holding high standards. Kids respect him and are inspired by him to do well. Kevin is the one to call! Here is his contact info: Kevinarnold333 [at] gmail.com 510-495-7923 http://berkeleycommunitytutor.com/ Amy T

Jan 2013

I would like to recommend Kevin Arnold as an excellent tutor. He has a way of communicating with teens that gets them engaged and motivated to learn. He worked with my son for a few years in high school and got this teen to begin to care about history and the world around him. He was also very good at teaching writing and my son tells me now that he wants to be a writer. It was Kevin more than his school classes that inspired him to think critically. Kevin came to our house to tutor (a big plus) and was flexible and friendly to work with. His phone number is (510) 495-7923 and his email address is: kevinarnold333 [at] gmail.com. Amy

May 2012

I just wanted to share with any parents looking for tutors the positive experience that we've had with Matt Baldwin. Our 11 year old son has always struggled with academics and was recently diagnosed with ADD. We found Matt through a recommendation and scheduled him to start coming for tutoring twice a week.

In the six months that they have worked together we've witnessed a great improvement in our son's overall performance and attitude towards school, especially in English - in which he had a particularly hard time. Matt's approach to tutoring work is relaxed and he is especially strong on reading, English composition, homework assistance, organizational strategies, and creating an overall sense of motivation. He keeps the sessions on track but never in a rigid way. Our son actually looks forward to their time together.

Matt is a Cal grad and is working on a master's in psychology. He is also a musician and gives guitar lessons - good at that too! Highly recommended.

His number is 831-915-3470. Email: baldwinunlimited [at] gmail.com Kat

Sept 2011

Re: Tutor in Lamorinda area for math, Spanish, and study skills
I have used Beatrice Rey-Herme (in Orinda)for a number of years; she is excellent with math and can help with study habits. She is at 925-254-6978 alice

Sept 2011

I'm a high school senior. Last year, I needed tutoring in English and History. I had to write essays and one research project, and study for the finals of both of those subjects. The workload was overwhelming (and already overdue), but I was fortunate to have had the assistance of Andrea Roemer. Within fairly little time, I had managed to produce excellent essays and be caught up with the rest of the class. Furthermore, I did very well on the finals. Drea is a lovely and patient person. She makes the studying easy and enjoyable. I highly recommend her! She can be reached at drearoemer [at] yahoo.com O.

July 2011

We use an incredible tutor for our 10th grader here in Oakland. Cyrus Khambatta [ck2 [at] berkeley.edu] is a brilliant, fun Cal graduate student who has a real gift both for tutoring a wide range of subjects (math, science, history, English) and for relating to teens. My son was sure any tutor would be too nerdy for his taste, but he and his friends think Cyrus is very cool. Cyrus comes to our house on a weekly basis and has reasonable rates, flexible scheduling, and great integrity. He has turned out to be a wonderful mentor, as well as a tutor. High marks on every count. KH

Oct 2010

I would like to recommend Adam Harris, who has been working with my sons for about three years now and who is starting an online tutoring service, available many hours a day and at short notice. Adam has been great with my kids (now aged 10 and 14), both of whom have special needs. His website for his tutoring service is www.nerdrightnow.com and since he graduated from Cal with degrees in Physics and Astronomy, there are a range of topics he can tutor. If you want to ask me more questions, please feel free to contact me. Heather

2004 - 2009 Parent Recommendations

Feb 27, 2009

I have a great tutor!
I continue to have conversations with other parents about tutors. There are many reasons to have a tutor for a child, particularly a teenager. Not all kids are great in every subject and simply need tutoring. Other kids at this age have trouble focusing and need guidance and homework assistance to stay on track. It's also wonderful to turn over the parent/child/homework relationship to a tutor. Or perhaps a child actually has learning disabilities and needs extra help.

I have searched for tutors and had many. Now as my kids are getting older I want to recommend and pass on a great tutor named Kevin Arnold. He has been able to bring out the best in my kids. Teaching them, supporting them, understanding the right moments to push and expect more from them (also when to let up). Kevin is fun. He relates well to my kids. He has figured out how each of my kids works best and gets the most out of them. Kevin is an excellent tutor for English, History and independent writing projects. He is a great homework coach. He will give your child study skills and help them organize their writing. He increases his expectations at appropriate times. Kevin has been a teacher at both public and private Schools so he knows the curriculum and understands the demands. He also worked for BHIndependent Study Program. He is currently working as a private tutor and as a teacher at The School for independent Learners. Grab Kevin while you can. He has put a smile on my face but more importantly my kids love him, they are doing great in school and feel proud! Kevin's cell: 510.495.7923 email: kevinarnold2004 [at] yahoo.com

Nov 20 2008

My son worked with Tutorpedia (www.tutorpedia.com) for three years. He first began as a sophomore at Berkeley High School, as he was failing Honors Algebra II. By the end of the year, he had pulled his final grade up to a high C. We were so pleased with his progress that we continued to work with Tutorpedia for the next two years, through Math Analysis and AP Statistic. He needed as much assistance with study habits and organization as he did with mathematical problems and principles, and Tutorpedia was excellent about this incorporating instruction and assistance into sessions. They were flexible in arranging and rearranging schedules around sporting schedules and other events.My son had an excellent personal rapport with his tutor. Because his tutor taught the whole student, not just the subject matter at hand, we saw marked improvement in our sons overall academic progress and in his self-confidence. Kate, Mother of BHS 2008 grad

May 2008

We are looking for an excellent all around tutor to help our son. Ideally someone who would come to the house. Appreciate any ideas. natalie

Have you tried Carolyn Edwards at Turning Point? Carolyn will give your child the one-on-one attention he needs, focus in on why/where he's struggling and address it. She produces amazing results. Carolyn's website is http://www.turning-point-edu.com/about.htm Nancy

Definitely contact Kevin Arnold kevinarnold2004 at yahoo.com - he's been really good with our teenage son. He's reliable, compassionate, and a great teacher - I'd recommend him without reservation. wendy

A Therapeutic Learning specialist, with ten years experience as director of Lindamood Bell. Currently teaching in a middle school. Very inspirational, excellent at connecting with teens. She charges by the hour, and it is only a little more for her to come to your house. She gets booked fast for the summer, so call soon for a consultation. Angela Parker. 510 530-9571, and leave a message. Good luck. She can help your child turn his motivation around! appreciative of the help for my son.

Dec 2007

We are looking for a tutor for Chemistry and Algebra2 for my daughter who is a Junior. We live in Moraga.

I would recommend Classroom Matters . They are in Berkeley but you could probably arrange to have your student tutored in both subjects on one day to save on driving. Karen

Sept 2007

My college bound daughter had a wonderful tutor, Erika Smith, through her 4 years in high school. She is versed in many areas, math - through Algebra II, Spanish, Writing and SAT prep. She also has extensive experience working with students with learning disabilities. She will work in Berkeley to Richmond area and will come to your home. I can't stress enough how helpful she was for my daughter. The two of them went beyond the tutor/student relationship to becoming friends. You can contact Erika at riceandsmith[at]earthlink.net
grateful parent

Feb 24 2006

I would like to recommend our exceptional educational therapist, Marianne DeCrane-Brent (phone 338-1242). She is very experienced working with a range of LD issues (former Raskob Day School teacher) and is warm and caring. She can tutor any subject (math only up to algebra 1)and any age. She has worked with my daughter for the last 7 years and has been extremely helpful. Feel free to email me if you want any more information. c.b.

Dec 2005

Kevin Arnold is a tutor who has been very helpful in helping my 15 yr old son with organizational skillls and with overcoming difficulty with writing. He can be reached at by phone at 655-6612 or email at kevinarnold2004 AT yahoo.com. Mindy

June 2005

I want to enthusiastically recommend Kevin Arnold as both a tutor and mentor. Kevin has been meeting with my 15-year old son once a week this spring and summer. He has provided my son with both academic support as well as a wonderful friendship. They have talked widely and with enthusiasm about the world, school and many other subjects, motivating my son to engage in a diverse spread of ideas and possibilities. Kevin gets my son to think about things he never thought could be interesting. This summer they have gone tide-pooling and played Nirvana on their guitars. If you'd like to contact me, I'd be happy to speak with you. p.s. Kevin also helped my son with his Spanish homework.

Dec 2004

I'd like to recommend Kevin Arnold as a coach or tutor for unmotivated, bright high school boys. He was my son's teacher at BHS Independent Studies two years ago, and I also hired him as a coach/tutor. He is now a full-time private tutor. Kevin's strength is his enthusaism for learning and knowledge. Because he is young and connected to youth culture, Kevin has the ability to get an apathetic, do-the-minimum kid fired up about reading and learning by exploring topics that are interesting, such as politics, culture, and music. I was very pleased that while working with Kevin, my son began to develop an interest in philosophy and psychology, began reading more and playing computer games less, and for the first time began to see himself as a curious learner instead of as an academic failure. My son did not magically become a high achieving UC applicant (!) but he absolutely did discover the joy of learning while working with Kevin, which continues to serve him well two years later. Kevin was also very helpful in just monitoring homework and assignments to get things turned in on time. Kevin Arnold kevinarnold2004 AT yahoo.com 510-655-6612

Earlier Recommendations

April 2002

I am looking for a tutor for my daughter who is learning disabled. She needs help mostly with Algebra, and some Physics. We also need to get her some SAT Prep. Realistically she is not the easiest student to work with, so I am looking for someone who has experience with the learning disabled and difficult students. I have tried normal tutors and it just did not work, so I need someone who specializes.

Paul Osborne (Paul the Tutor) is a wonderful math and science tutor and SAT instructor. He works wonders for kids who are tough to work with. We originally hired him to tutor my son in math after a few other tutors had not been able to help. The two of them got along very well. Paul helped my son turn himself around, and after a year and a half my son was excelling at math and we were able to quit the tutoring. We later hired Paul for SAT prep and occasional science (physics, chemistry and biology) work for my son, and to work with my younger daughter who can be very stubborn and moody. I was again very impressed with Paul's results. Paul is an expensive tutor, $90 or $100 an hour, but well worth it. You can reach him at (510) 301-5302, or at paulthetutor AT paulthetutor.com. He also has a web site at www.PaultheTutor.com. Dan

Feb 2002

We have been very pleased with my daughter's tutor, who is a Classics graduate student @ UCB. She has been working with my daughter for several months now and Amber has found her to be very helpful. She has been helping her mostly with biology, math, & history. She knows about good studying skills. Her name is Melissa Kaprelian. Her contact information: msk AT socrates.berkeley.edu. Toby