Our Tutors

Tara Reardon

Academic Tutor

 

Creativity, compassion, and critical thinking are three of the values that Tara Reardon strives to instill in her students. Tara earned a Bachelor's in Elementary Education from the University of Maryland, a Masters of Business Administration from the George Washington University, and is currently pursuing an endorsement in Gifted Education from the University of Virginia. 

 

This school year, Tara is starting her fourteenth year in education. She has taught second, third, and fourth grade and has educated students with a myriad of talents, skills, and challenges.  She is currently the 5th-grade Gifted Resource Teacher at Walker Elementary School in Charlottesville, VA. Before moving to Charlottesville, Tara spent many years teaching in MCPS. She is a volunteer for the Charlottesville-Albemarle SPCA and is a board member for the HOWS Project.  When Tara is not in a classroom, she is most likely hiking with her rescue dogs, Tilly and Zoe.  

 

 

 

 

Sylvie Herberg

Academic Tutor

Sylvie Herberg taught ninth and eleventh-grade honors and on-level English, AP Language & Composition, and Journalism at Walter Johnson High School for 10 years. While at WJ, she taught a College and SAT Preparation class and sponsored the award-winning student newspaper, The Pitch. Most recently, Sylvie spent four years living in Fort Hood, Texas where she continued teaching tenth grade, AP Language & Composition, and private remote tutoring in the areas of general essay writing and editing, college essay writing, SAT, and ACT preparation, and grammar instruction.

 

Sylvie holds a Master of Arts degree in English Curriculum and Instruction with a focus on Journalism Education from the University of Missouri, Columbia, and a Bachelor’s Degree in Journalism with a double major in English from the University of Maryland, College Park. Sylvie currently lives in Baltimore, Maryland with her husband who is an Army surgeon, her two children Nathan and Ellie, and rescue dog Carly. Sylvie spends most of her time playing with her children and developing creative ways to prevent the dog from destroying her house.

 

 

 

 

Elliott Niblock

Academic Tutor

Born and raised in Wisconsin, Elliott has traveled widely to pursue his career in higher education. He moved first to St. Paul, Minnesota to attend Macalester College, with brief stints abroad at the Goethe Institute in Berlin, as well as King’s College in London. Focusing his studies on Medieval Christianity, he earned a BA from Macalester with majors in History and Religious Studies in 2009. Next stop: Cambridge, Massachusetts. There, he studied Philosophy of Religion at Harvard Divinity School, serving as a non-resident tutor for the undergraduates of Eliot House; he received an MTS (Master of Theological Studies) from HDS in 2012. Following this brief tenure at Harvard, Elliott went out west to Missoula, Montana. In 2014, he completed his MFA (Master of Fine Arts) in Creative Writing at the University of Montana. While at UM, he taught collegiate writing for two years, predominantly the required freshman composition class Writing 101, but also one section of a Creative Writing Poetry Workshop. 

 

From 2014 - 2018, Elliott worked full time as a freelance writer and editor, executing a wide variety of writing contracts. Some of the projects to which he contributed writing include The Manifesto in Literature, Histories of Ordinary Life in Totalitarian Regimes, the Worldmark Encyclopedia of the Nations, the St. James Encyclopedia of Popular Culture, Legal Issues Across the Globe, and Immigration and Migration In Context, among others. Many of these writing projects are textbooks geared for a target audience that overlaps advanced high school classes, as well as introductory college courses.

 

In the fall of 2018, Elliott joined the PhD program in Religious Studies at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville, with research foci in Religion and Literature, Modern Jewish Thought, and the Philosophy of History. He currently serves as a Teaching Assistant in the Religious Studies Department at UVA, teaching discussion sections on a wide variety of Religion courses. In addition, he also works as a Writing Tutor at UVA's Writing Center, tutoring both undergraduate and graduate students, with topics that range from brainstorming ideas and writing strategies for first-year college essays, to polishing up the very final draft of research grant proposals for recent PhD recipients applying to post-doc positions. In his free time, Elliott enjoys traveling, hiking, biking, and watching both football and football (soccer)

 

 

 

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Alexia Chatfield

Academic Tutor

Alexia Chatfield is a secondary ELA teacher in Montgomery County. She grew up in the DMV area and graduated from Bethesda-Chevy Chase High School. Upon graduation, Alexia continued her studies at Tulane University in New Orleans, where she graduated Magna Cum Laude with her Bachelor’s and Master’s Degrees in English Literature and a Teaching Certificate in Secondary English Education. Alexia was also a teaching fellow for the national nonprofit  Breakthrough Collaborative, which is where she first realized her passion for education.


Alexia currently teaches 9th grade English at Walter Johnson High School but previously taught 7th grade English at Silver Creek Middle School. This year, Alexia will also be advising the literary and arts magazine at Walter Johnson, Spectator and this past summer she taught an online summer SAT course. Throughout her career Alexia has had a variety of experiences tutoring students of different ages and with different needs. Her work has mostly focused on improving students’ writing and grammar skills, reading comprehension, and executive functioning skills (organizational management), but she has extended her tutoring to some other content as well. Most of Alexia’s students have been in middle school and early high school (6th-10th grade). When Alexia isn’t teaching, you’d likely find her painting, reading, roadtripping, eating, or doing crossword puzzles

Damani J Davis

Academic Tutor

Damani is a teacher in MCPS currently at Tilden Middle School. He is certified to teach all mathematics classes from grades 6-12. He has experience teaching in both middle and high school. Damani's particular areas of expertise are Algebra 1, Geometry, and Pre-Calculus. 

Ashley Herdman

Academic Tutor

Ashley is entering her tenth year teaching! After receiving her Bachelor’s Degree in English and Master’s Degree in Secondary Education, she taught a variety of English classes at Montgomery College. Having graduated from MCPS, she was eager to teach in the county where she was raised. 

 

Ashley has a pretty unique experience having taught everything related to English from 6th grade (at Eastern Middle School), drama, creative writing, and currently teaches 9th and 12th grade at Walter Johnson High School. She’s been able to teach the whole spectrum of building fundamental skills to finessing those skills to create effective arguments and strong critical analyses. She strives to instill a love of reading, writing, and critical thinking in her students. Ashley is determined to show each student she works with that they can be successful writers. 

 

When not in the classroom Ashley can be found going to concerts, playing with her dog Max, with a book nearby, traveling, and desperately wishing for snow in winter so she can go skiing. 

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Christiana Stevenson

Academic Tutor

Christiana Stevenson has spent the last ten years teaching English Literature and Humanities. Christiana has taught English grades 6-12, including AP Language and Composition at Achievement First High School in New Haven, CT and, for the last seven years, has taught International Baccalaureate (IB) English at the Copenhagen International School in Denmark. 

Christiana has extensive experience working with students from grades 6-12, either individually or in small groups. Her work focuses on helping students improve their writing, enhancing their reading comprehension, and assisting students in developing a passion for learning so they become lifelong readers and writers. Christiana also has experience with SAT-tutoring, AP-exam prep and helping students calibrate their personal essays for college admissions. Christiana can also support students who may need help with executive functioning and organization. 

 

Born and raised in Wilton, Connecticut Christiana graduated Magna Cum Laude from DePauw University in Indiana and received her Master’s in Education from Marian University. Christiana completed Teach for America in 2012, where she was also TFA’s regional Teacher of the Year in Indianapolis.  After seven years abroad, Christiana recently moved to Garrett Park, Maryland with husband and their two children. Outside the classroom, Christiana enjoys reading, cooking and exploring nature with her children.

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Susan Lee

Academic Tutor

Susan S Lee has been teaching in the classroom for 20 years.  She began her career teaching High School English at the Frederick Douglass Academy in Harlem, NY and then moved to the DMV area and became dual certified in Special Education and English.  She taught at The Ivymount School in their Model Asperger’s Program and currently teaches in Tilden Middle School’s Asperger Program as both a Special Education and English Teacher.  Her primary focuses are in English, Executive Function, Writing and helping students work through learning challenges.  Susan’s philosophy in the classroom is, “We don’t give up, we get going!”

 

Susan received her BA in English Language and LIterature from Smith College, her MS.Ed from Bank Street College of Education in English and Early Adolescent Education and has received her Admin Certification from Johns Hopkins University and her certification in Equity and Excellence from McDaniel College.

 

During her free time, Susan enjoys getting creative.  Whether it’s through writing, crafting or cooking, Susan enjoys the challenge of putting things together that unexpectedly work.  Susan loves Star Wars, all things Hello Kitty, a strong, freshly ground/brewed cup of coffee, a great pen and an awesome book.

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Lorelei Dinger

Academic Tutor

Lorelei grew up in Montgomery County and has now enjoyed teaching in the county for 5 years. She graduated from The University of North Carolina Wilmington in 2016 with a degree in middle grades education, concentrating in science and language arts. She wanted to continue her passion for science education and completed an M.Ed in STEM educational leadership at The University of Maryland in 2020. She remembers having excellent tutors and mentors throughout her education and would like to provide this same attention and individualized support for other students! When Lorelei isn't teaching she enjoys live music, being outdoors, and cuddling with her cat Lima. 

Brooke Charlesworth

Academic Tutor

Brooke has worked hard to discover and improve teaching methods for a continually changing youth for the last thirteen years as an educator. Presently, she is an Instructional Coach and Resource Room Teacher at The Langley School in McClean, VA. As the Middle School Instructional Coach, Brooke works with teachers across middle school grades and disciplines to support differentiated instruction in an inquiry-based curriculum. As a Resource Teacher, she supports students who benefit from additional time, accommodations, and skill development. In addition to her role at Langley, Brooke holds a dual-position as a Curriculum Consultant and English Teacher at Edukita, an Indonesian education start-up for English Language Learners. She also runs her own piano business, serving approximately eight private beginner and intermediate students.

 

Prior to her time at Langley, Brooke was fortunate to teach countless students between the ages of 8-15 in Washington, DC, Brooklyn, NY, Indianapolis, IN, and Santiago de Compostela, Spain. She spent one year with KIPP DC as a Lead Special Educator and Case Manager and previously seven years at Achievement First East New York Middle School in Brooklyn, NY. During her last year at AFENYMS, she held a multifaceted position as Upper School Compliance Coordinator, Grade Level Chair, Lead 8th Grade Writing Teacher, and 8th Grade Literature Learning Specialist. Prior to teaching eighth grade, Brooke spent two years teaching 5th Grade Writing. While living in NYC, Brooke spent three summers training and developing 30+ cohorts of new teachers through the NYC Teaching Fellows and one summer teaching English Language Learners at Chester College International School in Santiago de Compostela, Spain.

 

Before working in NY, Brooke spent four years teaching in Indianapolis, IN, where she was placed through Lalanne, a graduate program at the University of Dayton funded by AmeriCorps. While in Indianapolis, Brooke taught third, fourth and sixth grade, and served on her school's Leadership Team. She was also actively involved with Stand for Children as a Community Builder, training principals, teachers, and parents on advocacy work for Senate Bill I.

 

Brooke holds an M.S. in Literacy from the University of Dayton and a B.A. in Elementary and Special Education with a Minor in Music. She loves running, skiing, and playing piano and guitar during her free time! 

Christie Heidenberger 

Academic Tutor

Christie Heidenberger has been teaching upper elementary language arts and math for 7 years.  Prior to teaching she graduated from University of Maryland with a bachelor’s degree in Communication and continued on to John’s Hopkins University, graduating with a Master of Arts degree in Elementary Education. She started her teaching career in 2014 in New York City, teaching third grade at The Horace Mann School. In 2017, Christie moved to her home state of Maryland where she began teaching at St. Andrew’s Episcopal School. At St. Andrew’s, Christie has taught third, fourth, and fifth grades.  She began volunteering to tutor students in math and reading while at the University of Maryland, and quickly realized teaching was her passion. Christie recently completed training in The Orton-Gillingham method of reading intervention in order to further her studies and reach more students with their guiding principles. Christie strives to instill a deep love of reading and strong sense of math in the everyday world with her students.

In her spare time, Christie enjoys cooking, traveling with her family, and playing tennis. Most importantly, she loves spending time with her two daughters and exposing them to the wonders of the beach, the zoo, and nature.