Intelligentsia, Inc. started with the desire to fill the gap between what schools offer and what students absorb. After many years of working as educators for universities, private schools and tutoring companies, Matt and Hilda Seidman started tutoring on their own. Riding on their vespas, they would travel from one student’s house to the next, using skills they had developed over the years to bring tutoring to the potential they believed it could have.
First and foremost, instead of trying to conform their students’ performance to the expectations and demands of others, Matt and Hilda started by relating to the students and building trust. They uncovered each individual student’s enthusiasm for learning.
Secondly, because they covered all subjects for a given grade-level, they structured their sessions effectively. They began by filling knowledge gaps from the past while cruising through immediate assignments and previewing the work ahead. Students’ academic strengths were harnessed to improve areas of weaker comprehension, and by integrating skill-building directly into homework help, students got their work done and learned to do it themselves. Keenly aware of the slippery slope of tutor dependence, they fought to counteract it. Rather than cradling their students, they trained them to use the techniques on their own, so they could become their own academic advocates.
Families were no longer forced to hire different “expert” tutors for each subject, a trend that disrupts coordination of approach and the ability to address underlying issues. Matt and Hilda began searching and training like-minded educators to handle their growing clientele. Intelligentsia, Inc was formed.
Since its inception, Intelligentsia has brimmed with success stories, helping students of all learning types and abilities realize their potential and engage with their work. We’re familiar with the curricula, faculty and culture of New York’s independent schools, as well as the challenges they present. Intelligentsia helps students make the most of their education—and of their intelligence.