My journey to becoming an Online A-level Biology Tutor
Hi, I’m Nicky Tweedle and I would like to share my experiences which led to me becoming an Online A-level Biology Tutor
My passion for biology started as an A-level student many years ago and led to me studying at the University of Liverpool and graduating in 1995 with a BSc (Hons) Microbiology.
At the time I really fancied becoming a forensic scientist within the police, so I was interviewed for their graduate scheme. The feedback I received was very positive, but they felt I had lived a sheltered life applying directly to the police from University and straight to University from school.
They asked me to reapply the following year having gained some ‘life experience’ and suggested I go travelling for a year!! So, my adventures began!
My 1 gap year which became 2!
I decided rather than just travel, that I would prefer to gain valuable life skills and insights into the world of work.
Part of my experiences included working a summer in the USA on a girl scout camp, two summer seasons working for PGL on a water sports centre in France and two winter seasons managing a chalet in Italy.
Back to the real world
Following my 2 gap years, where I had earnt pennies but grew up and developed tremendously as a person-I think my family thought the wrong person had come home to them!! Outgoing, lively and highly organised! I made a big life decision and decided the policy was no longer for me. As I had thoroughly enjoyed working with children abroad and decided I would follow the pathway of becoming a teacher. I lived at home in Brighouse and travelled to the University of Leeds and completed my PGCE Biology with Science.
Teaching life leading me to a biology tutor
For over 15 years, I worked in 3 different schools. The first being a state comprehensive where I gained all the behavioural skills necessary as a teacher! I then took a promotion as Head of Biology at Adam’s Grammar School, a Haberdashers’ boys selective boarding school in Shropshire.
I loved my time here and threw myself into every opportunity possible gaining many water sports qualifications, managing Bronze and Silver Duke of Edinburgh Award and running the 6th form girls’ netball team.
It was here I met my husband who was a PE teacher and boarding house tutor. We then made the decision to relocate to Yorkshire. I returned to the school I had attended as a student Bradford Girls’ Grammar a selective, independent girls’ school. I became Head of Careers, Second in Biology, co-ordinator of Biology Challenge and Biology Olympiad and the Duke of Edinburgh assessor.
This was a fantastic school to teach in with well behaved, bright girls all in small class sizes. I thrived teaching the academically able students aiming for Oxbridge, Medicine, Veterinary Science, Dentistry etc
Life moved quickly. I got married and we eventually managed to have our miracle baby following IVF. It was at this time; I made the decision to take a leap into the unknown and set up my own business tutoring A-level Biology. For me, however, this meant my work hours could be flexible around family support and I could spend lots of time with my son. It was the best decision I have ever made.
After a year of tutoring at the kitchen table, I invested in a log cabin in the garden. This was a fantastic space where I could tutor small groups of A-level Biologists.
My business boomed purely due to word of mouth and soon all the local communities knew Tweedle’s Biology Tuition was the place to go for A-level Biology Tuition. A good biology tutor was needed.
But in 2014, disaster struck. I had the worst telephone call of my life; my husband had suffered a life-threatening medical crisis. Thankfully he defied the odds and made a full recovery. This changed our perspective on life.
Life was to live and have no regrets. We had always talked about teaching abroad in international schools but never taken the leap. So, we started applying in Europe.
After 7 years of tutoring in the UK, my husband was appointed as Head of PE, Kings’ College, Madrid so the big move began. We sold our house, cars and most of our big belongings ready to start afresh in Spain.
It’s not been easy and Spanish bureaucracy will always drive me mad.
The language barrier is easing as we develop gradually in our understanding. We do have a great teacher, our 8-year-old son. He has absorbed the language like a sponge so helps us out massively!
This move meant Tweedle’s Biology Tuition had to switch to becoming fully online tuition. I adapted to easily easily and now love it. I currently offer individual tuition sessions alongside weekly group Masterclasses for AQA & OCR and OCR AS and A-level Biology.
If you would like to find out more details visit Tweedle’s Biology Tuition for all your biology tutor needs