Anna Leiss

Test Prep & Academic Tutor

My career in teaching began outdoors. Raised in the Finger Lakes region of New York, I received my Bachelor of Science degree from the State University of New York College of Environmental Science and Forestry, majoring in Natural History and Interpretation. My passion for science, fueled by the outdoors and an interest in solving issues related to climate change, led me to focus on subjects like biology and environmental science.

I worked for seven years as an environmental educator before becoming a classroom teacher. I then pursued a Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) degree at Ithaca College, where I emerged dual certified in biology and, after completing some additional coursework at Cornell University, agricultural education.

After teaching grades 7-12 at a rural school in New York, I moved to the Bay Area and taught middle school science in San Mateo. With over five years of classroom teaching under my belt, I refined my teaching practice and developed a desire to work closely with smaller groups, allowing for more personalized learning experiences. I was also inspired by my own positive encounters with tutors during my academic career. Reflecting on my teaching journey, I’ve learned the importance of understanding students’ individual interests, motivations, and life contexts to foster meaningful learning experiences.

I’ve always found joy in witnessing students’ curiosity when they ask out of the box or unconventional science questions, as it indicates their willingness to think creatively and engage deeply with the content. In terms of tutoring, my approach is rooted in creating a safe and comfortable environment where students feel empowered to explore and express their understanding, their curiosity, and their areas of confusion.

Before joining AJ Tutoring, I utilized my science background to brew beer at a craft brewery on the Peninsula. When I’m not working, you can find me birdwatching, baking bread, or playing the video game Zelda.

Subjects Tutored:

K-12 Private School Interview, Writing Sample, and Applications
Academic Biology
Academic K-8
AP Biology


Happy Parents and Students

 She kept the learning environment really up and joyful when I was obviously full of self doubt and stress.  Read what others are saying

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