The Portland Tutor’s Mission Statement

Elissa’s passion for tutoring developed not just from her enthusiasm for education but from sympathy for those struggling with it. Adolescents face multiple acute pressures, including the need for academic success, college choice and preparation, the imperatives of social life, and, most crucially, the psychological challenge of forming an identity, of finding out who they are, discerning their purpose in life. The challenge is to move students forward in this complex process without sacrificing their individuality and happiness.

Furthermore, all students have unique talents as well as difficulties, and the talents need to be identified and recognized. This is not mere kindness, but sound strategy. There are many kinds of intelligence, for one thing. In addition, students learn better when they hear affirming messages about their work, and positive reinforcement of their strengths. This often means starting from inside the student’s comfort zone, and working outwards to expand it.

Elissa provides responsive and constructive criticism that focuses on the task at hand, but she never makes comments that disparage or belittle the student as a person. She believes that students learn better in a happy, structured, and supportive environment, where projects and tasks build incrementally on one another, where each new step seems doable, and where there is specific, helpful feedback. She creates that environment for her students, because it works. And a little shared laughter helps now and then, as well.

Content copyright . Elissa B. Hare, M.Phil., Ph.D., J.D. All rights reserved.