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About Ignite Coaching

more than academic

We work with...









on subjects like...

english & writing

Ignite founder and writing coach Robert McKay says: "I've been a writer since I learned to write, and I practice and teach genres from poetry to research papers to op eds. I've taught high school English for five years, was an undergraduate fellow at the legendary Bread Loaf Writers' Conference, and have published dozens of poems and essays in a number of venues. But more importantly, I have a contagious enthusiasm for language that sings, and a zealousness for whittling and polishing away at a piece until it shines."

Social sciences

Robert is incredibly passionate about world history and social studies, and their importance for tomorrow's global citizens. Having developed an innovative global history curriculum at two private schools, and shared it with others as a professional development seminar leader, has given him a level of research-driven understanding of the field that you can't find in any textbook. Robert's philosophy: "I bring my students far more than just the facts -- I help them build up conceptual frameworks, big-picture knowledge, and most importantly genuine interest."

STEM & Coding

As Ignite's STEM and coding expert, Anjana brings an impressive teaching background in physics, chemistry, life sciences & ecology, with an interdisciplinary emphasis on science & society--especially in light of current events! Plus, she's worked in IT for much of her career and has taught Scratch, Python, HTML and more.

At Ignite, we make math meaningful, from pre-algebra through calculus, with enrichment and connections to data science basics, data visualization & presentation skills, beginner to advanced Excel, financial literacy and business math.

Test Prep & Admissions

With decades of combined experience preparing students for the SAT, we help you leverage your strengths, manage your weaknesses, and get over testing angst to concentrate on jacking up your scores! We also work with ACT, ISEE, and AP exam prep.

If you're applying to high schools or colleges, we offer full-spectrum support with schools research, application strategy, resume-writing, essay revision, and app deadline management.

time mgmt & study skills

We provide executive function coaching as well as highly personalized solutions for time management. We identify where a student's organizational systems are absent or breaking down, and help them test solutions--from sticky notes to apps--till we find what works. "As a student, I always struggled with time management, organization, distractions, and procrastination," Robert says. "I love sharing hard-won lessons on how to overcome these hurdles, & I know first-hand how helpful a tutor can be with them." 

What can tutoring do for you?

The INSPIRE model of effective tutoring is a research-based explanation of what great tutors do and why it can be so powerful for students. When I read about it I thought: "Oh yeah, that's exactly what I'm trying to do!"

Intelligent: Great tutors know and love their subjects, and can pinpoint students' optimal level of challenge.
Nurturing: They come to know and care for their students--their strengths & challenges, hopes & dreams.
Socratic: Great tutors "provide almost no facts, solutions, or explanations, but elicit... by questioning." Students are "constantly thinking, doing, and responding."
Progressive: Great tutors can lead students through an ascending spiral of inquiry, helping them find not just answers, but new and deeper questions.
Indirect: Great tutors know how to offer feedback with impeccable tact. Students always know how they are doing, and never feel judged.
Reflective: Going beyond "getting the right answer," great tutors ask students to articulate their thinking, developing metacognitive muscles.
Encouraging: Always believing in students' abilities, great tutors motivate & bolster confidence.*

* Adapted from Wood, W. B., & Tanner, K. D. (2012). The Role of the Lecturer as Tutor: Doing What Effective Tutors Do in a Large Lecture Class. CBE Life Sciences Education, 11(1), 3–9.

Our Philosohy
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