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Shandon Z.

  • English
  • University Admittance
  • Victoria, BC, Canada
  • 250.885.2902
  • $35.00 per hr for Private Tutoring

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I have been a professional tutor for more than twenty years.  I began by tutoring Canadians, but expanded into tutoring students from all over the world, especially Asia.  I read a lot and bring what I learn from reading into my lessons.  My interests are wide ranging – I read literature for pleasure, follow current events closely, and enjoy gardening, taking care of dogs and being outside in the natural world.  Many years of helping students with university courses have enabled me to expand my knowledge of business, engineering, social sciences, Asian culture and many other subjects.  As well, I learned about Asian attitudes in the fifteen years that my husband and I were homestay parents for UBC and Langara College. I enjoy learning and tying together the things I learn from different sources.  As a tutor I can either help students with specific school assignments or use my broad background to help them understand more about western culture and the kind of thinking required by demanding western universities.

I grew up in the United States, where I earned my BA from Columbia University.  My major was in “Literature in English,” but I also completed a teacher-training program to obtain a New York State high school teacher’s certificate.  Then I came to British Columbia for a vacation and liked it so much that I stayed here. I eventually completed some courses at UBC and SFU that earned me BC certification for teaching English and ESL.  Since that time I have continued to read, broadening and updating my knowledge of literature, teaching and the world in general.

After three years in the 1980’s as a teacher on call in Vancouver Island secondary schools and two years teaching on Hornby Island, I became a tutor in Vancouver.  I started this when a Japanese friend arranged for me to tutor the children of some Mitsui executives.  I discovered that I liked tutoring better than teaching classes, so that is mostly what I have been doing ever since.  About half my students have been in high school, some have been younger, and many have been in college or university. In the summers when there is less work for tutors, I sometimes teach test-preparation and essay writing courses at small private learning centers.  I just recently moved to Victoria, so I am rebuilding my tutoring business here.

My specialty islong-term tutoring of high school students; I provide enrichment and trainingin the critical thinking required by top-level American and Canadianuniversities. I try to bridge the gap between Asian education, with itsemphasis on memorization, and western education, with its insistence thatstudents be able to form and support opinions. As well, I help foreign students and immigrants to succeed in highschool and university English and business writing courses. I also prepare themfor exams such as the SAT, LPI, GRE, LSAT, MCAT and GMAT.  Usually I teach in my home office on QuadraSt.  Lessons can focus on schoolassignments or on general improvement of writing skills, critical thinking, andawareness of current issues.

What people are saying about Shandon:

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True mentor

A true mentor who cares, she understands her students and … their short term and ongoing needs. It has been a great pleasure learning from her.
Aaron Yen | Sat Dec 03 2011
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I highly recommend Shandon Zetina as an English tutor. Having been her student for eight years, I can say that her knowledge and ability to address a student’s needs are outstanding.
Jonathan Wong | Sat Dec 03 2011

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