Ashley Costa

Academic Tutor

Since elementary school, I have known that I wanted to teach in some capacity. When I was around ten years old, I informally taught my three-year-old sister how to read. I continued to help her develop her academic readiness and mentored her through her K-12 years. Additionally, during sixth grade, one of my dance teachers asked me to assist her preschool dance classes. Seeing the impact I could make in young students’ lives fulfilled me and led me to pursue a career in education.

Originally from the Monterey Peninsula, I graduated from Pacific Grove High School. I attended Santa Clara University where I received a B.S. in liberal studies pre-teaching track and history, magna cum laude. My senior research project centered around integrating arts standards into ELA and math standards-based lessons. I was actively involved in the Future Teacher’s Project and worked as a reading tutor at a local K-8 school. I remained at SCU to obtain my master’s in the art of teaching and my California Multiple Subject Teaching Credential. My time at SCU developed my internal drive to teach to the whole child, to design lessons with multiple strategies and modes of learning, and to weave in social emotional learning into my sessions.

After graduation, I taught 2nd grade at a public, primarily bilingual school, focusing on English language development along with traditional subject areas. I then taught 5th grade all subjects and 4th grade social studies at a private K-8 school.

At AJ Tutoring, I tutor both elementary and middle school students and U.S. history. My love of history began in 5th grade, and when I entered college, I opted to take most of my general education credits in history. I was elected president of the history department club my senior year, and I was a member of the history honors society my junior and senior years. My senior research paper intersected my two major interests: child development/education and history. I focused on school segregation in California and child labor laws during the Progressive Era. When tutoring students in history, I enjoy seeing students realize how life has changed politically, socially, and economically over the course of our nation’s history. I also strive to make connections to keep the content relevant for students.

As an educator, I believe all students can learn when teachers take into account their strengths, interests, and areas for growth. I acknowledge that students’ learning is on a continuum, and I develop lessons based on the scaffolding of skills based on California State Standards. Students learn best when they see a model and then actively practice the skill, and receiving immediate feedback allows students to learn and make lasting changes. Finally, learning happens best when the tutor-student relationship is strong. I strive to find connections between subject areas and to integrate reading and writing skills into my social studies lessons. I build students’ confidence, acknowledge their strengths, develope their writing skills, and engage a love of social studies through examining primary and secondary sources.

When I am not tutoring, you can find me hiking around the Bay Area, reading a variety of genres (historical fiction is my favorite), watching local arts performances, and spending time with family and friends.

Subjects Tutored:

Academic US History
Academic Study Skills
Academic K-8
AP US History


Happy Parents and Students

 My tutor was able to explain everything really well while keeping it fun and engaging.  Read what others are saying

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