Clarence Mills

Clarence M.

Denver, CO

Lesson Details

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Clarence teaches



Clarence delivers an exceptional lesson experience and ranks in the top 15% of our teachers nationwide.
Teaches students:
Ages 18+

Teaching since:
January 2014

I'm a scientist, farmer, traveler, writer and (most importantly) student. I'm deeply passionate about learning and hope to continue to do so throughout my life. I love to share the knowledge and perceptions I discover with others and have been told that I am skilled at simply and clearly conveying complex concepts. I have a bachelor's of science focused on environmental microbiology and ecology but have also studied history and writing at the collegiate level. I'm fluent in Spanish having spent about a year in Latin America (as well as attending a bilingual elementary school in New York City) and am comfortable teaching basic grammar and conversational Spanish.

As a teacher I strive to not only bring understanding and competency to the subject at hand but to inspire enthusiasm. One of the ways in which I do this is through applying the subject matter to the world around us by making connections, deductions and inferences with that knowledge. Lots of material is presented in a dry and abstract manner in school, especially in the sciences. If it remains in that detached form it will forever be a burden, a chore to be completed and shortly forgotten. But if you can take that seemingly irrelevant material and start to recognize and explain the crazy micro-phenomena that compose our existence there is a chance you might actually retain something five years from now.

I also try to promote a better understanding of the ways in which we acquire knowledge. Our generally rigid, hierarchical system of education can disempower and bore even the most curious people. We tend to slowly transition from inventive, experimenting, philosophizing children into dutiful and compliant "students". We are fed "facts" and primarily asked to regurgitate them rather than to draw correlations, inferences and predictions from what we experience. If you remain in academia you will realize (possibly well into college) that to gain new knowledge and succeed in your field you actually must find information that is not yet a fact. I attempt to describe some of the methods for obtaining new information for each subject I teach and push students to assertively seek out knowledge. I also teach my students to verify information through multiple sources, fact check, weigh potential biases and evaluate causality, especially with regards to information obtained through the internet.

If any portion this long-winded monologue remotely resonates with you, please contact TakeLessons. I would love to tutor you!

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Water Quality Technician/ Educator
Sep 2015 - Present
Groundwork Denver

Partnering with EPA to monitor Eschericia coli levels in a local watershed using Iodex. Developing molecular method to compare Bacteroides fragilis levels to E.coli to determine source of contamination. Using ArcGIS to map and analyze data. Work with high school students from the area we serve, providing them with paid job experience and scientific knowledge.

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Research Assistant
Aug 2015 - Present
Ferrell Lab

Investigating chemical communication in nitrogen cycle bacteria. Cloning and expressing putative quorum sensing genes into E.coli. Performing growth experiments with varied culture conditions using an engineered bioassay strain to measure signal production.

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Sep 2014 - Present
The Bridge Project

The Bridge Project's mission is to provide educational opportunities for children living in Denver's public housing neighborhoods so they graduate from high school and attend college or learn a trade.

Dec 2013 - Mar 2014
Samosir Ecovillage Project

Volunteered for a locally initiated reforestation and education project on northern Sumatra. Taught and tutored students at the local school in English.


Bachelor of Science in Biology & Environmental Sciences
Jan 2010 - Jun 2013
The Evergreen State College


Bahasa Indonesia
Limited Proficiency
Professional Proficiency


Permaculture Design Certificate (PDC)
Jan 2009
Earth Activist Training

72 hour Permacutlure (an ecologically based system of agriculture) training with an additional emphasis on environmental justice.

Photos & Videos

Photo by Clarence M.

Teaching in Sumatra

My students brought me a birthday cake!
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2 Reviews

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Rachael L. Oct 20, 2015
Spanish · Online

Clarence is an awesome tutor, and individual in general. My eight year old son loves him and looks forward to each lesson! He is very flexible with scheduling and my son is learning more and more Spanish with each lesson. I would recommend him to anyone looking to learn Spanish!

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Natasha S. Feb 19, 2015
Spanish · Online

Clarence offers a unique and refreshing approach to learning Spanish. As a teacher, he's very open, considerate of the student's need and tailors the lesson to encourage effective learning. This approach is particularly effective for students at the advanced beginners thru intermediate levels.

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