Child chasing red heart in a bubble image


Posted on 29th August 2011 in Tampa English Tutor

Over this last summer, I let the news about the state of our politics and economy get to me.

I felt betrayed, angry, ignored, and misunderstood. I love this country and am afraid that it will not be what it was for me for those who are coming of age right now. I believe in the goodness of America and value the long traditions that produced a Republic dedicated to the proposition that “all men are created equal and endowed by their creator with certain inalienable rights among which are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.” I respect the sacrifices that have been made by people to open the pursuit of happiness to every American.

Despite the challenges that we face, I am blessed to be able to do work that I enjoy. I take great pride in knowing that I have helped a student write better or think more clearly or appreciate the artistry of a work of literature.

Child chasing red heart in a bubble image

This summer, I worked with a Jesuit High School student. We read A Separate Peace by John Knowles and Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury. I remember hating A Separate Peace when I read it in high school, but I thoroughly enjoyed it this time. I had never read Fahrenheit 451 and had fun helping the student see how the pieces of the book fit together.

The students I work with give me reason to be optimistic and to feel I am blessed.

This post written by English tutor Eric Anderson. Eric is a private tutor in Wesley Chapel, Florida. Contact him at The photo in this post is the work of H. Kopp Delaney ( It is licensed under CC by no Deriv 2.0.


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Courtney Carmody image of red apple in outstretched hand

Business English Class Offers Proofreading Tips

Posted on 25th August 2011 in Tampa Writing Tutor

I started teaching a short course in business English a few weeks ago. This week, the members of the class discussed tactics they use to proofread business letters.

Courtney Carmody image of red apple in outstretched hand

This image by Cortney Carmody. Catch more of her images in her Flickr photostream at . Image licensed under CC by 2.0They came up with a good list:

  • Read the letter backwards – Start with the final sentence and read each sentence. The student that contributed this tip said that reading “backwards” lets him look at the words without getting caught up in the letter’s content.
  • Read the letter out loud – Let the ear catch what the eye misses.
  • Read the letter with an awareness of the sins of its creator –  Look carefully for the kinds of errors that are typical of the person who wrote the letter.
  • Print the letter and proof a hard copy – Errors are easier to see on paper than on screen.
  • Let some time pass between writing and proofing – Let a final draft sit for a while before proofing it. Come at it with fresh eyes.
  • Find the office English major – Let another person give the letter a look before it goes in the mail.

If you have a good technique that you use to proofread, I would love to add it to our list.

This post written by Tampa English tutor Eric Anderson. Eric tutors grammar and writing. Contact him at 813.787.8959 or using the magic of e-mail at Tampa tutor (at)


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