Private Tutoring: Find Me On Italki & Superprof!

My Dearest Mad-Readers,

If you have been following my blog for some time, you must have noticed some (very exciting) change recently. Indeed, I have been working very hard on a services page. A page which I only published a few days ago. This post will aim at clarifying what I can or cannot do for a client.

​A Wide Array Of Services ?

My filming skills have significantly improved. I am very proud of the last two videos I shot, respectfully for my Italki and then WellSpeak application. Since they are unlisted on YouTube, I thought that I could add them down below for all of you who would be interested in seeing how much I have progressed in a few months. Please, do not hesitate to give me constructive feedback via email or in the comments.

Italki Introduction Video

Well Speak Introduction Video

I am aware that both videos are very similar (even the thumbnails are almost identical), yet I would argue this is absolutely normal. They are for 2 different teaching platforms, and this is the only reason why they are not exactly the same. I would not like to have copyrights issues, since I would end up poorer than I already am… Re-shooting and re-editing the same video also was an excellent exercise for me. It gave me the possibility to compare 2 different final results and see more clearly what I could have done better.

You will notice I also added subtitles in English. I recently downloaded an opensource program called aegisub. It is amazing and allows you to time your subtitles in a very straightforward manner. To be absolutely sure they would appear online (and because of my lack of knowledge of a better way), I burned the subtitles with an ffmpeg command.

At the moment, I only teach French on Italki and English on Superprof. This is because applications are closed for English teachers on Italki and this remains the online platform where I do most of my online activities. Hopefully I should manage to diversify them later. I am in no rush, however. I would much rather begin slowly and increase my workload progressively. I want to be able to guarantee a high lesson quality and this obviously cannot function if I try and do too much too quickly.

If you go and have a look at my profile & the lessons I offer on Italki, here is what you should see:

  • 2 types of lessons: One structured around a casual conversation in French; One trial lesson ($1) in which we can have a conversation in French (depending on your level) or in English if you are merely starting out. In this second scenario, I give you the basics and we discuss the methods which may work best for you depending on your interests, goals and motivations.
  • The first type of lesson can have various lengths : 30 mins ($5); 60 mins ($10) & 90 mins ($15).
  • A warning: If you speak neither French nor English, I cannot take you as my student. It would be a waste of time and money for the both of us. For trial lessons, I would also be willing to take someone speaking Italian. Indeed, my level in this language would be more than enough to help you start your learning journey on the right foot.

I chose to focus my lessons on casual conversations because I no longer believe in “teaching”. I believe in guiding. As a student booking a lesson with me, you should not expect me to do all the work for you. If you wish to learn a language, you are in for the full package, and that includes efforts (and frustration). As your teacher, I am here for several things:

  • Practice a topic with you or explain you things which you have not been able to understand on your own (grammar-related issues, for instance).
  • Psychologically support you through the ups and downs of your learning journey.
  • Advise you: there is a lot of free content out there. In fact, there has never been as much. The internet at least has this one advantage: if you wish to learn a language, the only thing you need is a solid motivation. Since all this free content I am writing about is not always easy to find, I consider that it is my job to select what would be most helpful and share it with you.

This method implies that you should be active, and not passively wait for me to magically make you bilingual…

‘Cause it ain’t gonna happen!

​Services I Might Add In The Future

When I first published this new services page, I wanted to list everything I was capable of doing for a potential client: freelance writing, translating, teaching, website building and whatnot. As I am writing this article, I realize how much of an error this was. This is why I decided to remove the section about freelance writing, which you could still see a few days ago.

I might offer more services later, but I would rather focus on teaching for some time. I am only starting out, so this sounds like the most reasonable choice I can make: I have to concentrate or I will probably fail in everything.

Since I also have other skills related to GNU/Linux, or web development, I might also add more technology-oriented services (such as consulting). Only the future will be able to confirm this, however. Keep reading my blog in the next months and years if you are curious to find out 😉

​Conclusion: Contact Me ?

I prefer to be contacted through my professional email address: madlibrarian[at]yahoo[dot]com. I enjoy having the freedom to reply at the time of my choice. I usually answer quickly to all queries but it allows me to think about your request if necessary. Whether it be for giving me advice or booking a lesson with me, I would love to hear from you. You may also feel free to create an account on Italki or Superprof & contact me there. It would be even better.

Cheers,

Phil.