I am a board-certified, licensed naturopathic doctor. Before becoming a doctor I spent several years tutoring and teaching. I have worked with students of all ages, from 3 year olds learning phonics to graduate students studying histology and physiology. I specialize in general sciences, medical sciences, reading comprehension, literary analysis, and composition. I love working with students of all ages and I love to teach.
Education & Certification
Undergraduate Degree: Humboldt State University - Bachelor in Arts, International Studies
Graduate Degree: National College of Natural Medicine - PHD, Naturopathic Doctorate
Gardening, Carpentry, Printmaking
1st Grade Math
2nd Grade Math
3rd Grade Math
3rd Grade Science
4th Grade Math
4th Grade Science
5th Grade Math
5th Grade Science
6th Grade Math
6th Grade Science
7th Grade Math
7th Grade Science
8th Grade Math
9th Grade Math
Anatomy & Physiology
Elementary School Math
Elementary School Science
High School Biology
High School Chemistry
High School English
Middle School Science
Study Skills and Organization
What is your teaching philosophy?
I love teaching and I love working with kids. I understand that a good teacher needs to combine perception, patience, persistence, and respect. A gifted teacher discerns the uniqueness in each learner, and then tailors their lesson to that learner. I am able to recognize my students' learning needs, and I shape my language in a way that makes information more accessible and digestible. I believe passionately that education elevates both the student and the community, and I approach teaching with the seriousness and devotion that every learner deserves.
What might you do in a typical first session with a student?
In your first session we'll talk about why you need a tutor, what your history has been up to this point, and what you would like to get out of your sessions. Then I'll ask you some questions to get a better idea of who you are as a learner. What sparks your interest? What are your ultimate goals for your (or your child's) life and your education? What is your learning style - visual, auditory, kinetic, etc.? What are your core values, and how can we apply them to your studies? This helps me understand who you are, so that I can tailor my sessions to suit you best.
How can you help a student become an independent learner?
Once we have identified your strengths, we can name them and help you understand how to find the study strategies and environments that will work best for you. Study is about focus, intent, and environment. To have focus you have to find some way to care about and enjoy what you are learning. To hone in on your intent, you have to have very clear goals, plans, and ambitions. Understanding the right environment for your learning is about having the right space, encouragement, people, the right school, and the right teachers. Identifying these elements are all part of the process of figuring out who you are or who your child is, as a learner. This discovery process offers lifelong benefits in self-understanding and ability to learn.
How would you help a student stay motivated?
Motivation depends on the student. Some students are motivated by dreaming about their goals. Some younger (or older!) students feel motivated when they are able to joke, be silly, and have fun while they are learning. Some people need to couch their study in something deeply related to their lived experience. Every student is different. My job as a tutor is to identify that difference and help each student use it to motivate them to learn.
If a student has difficulty learning a skill or concept, what would you do?
All information is accessible in one way or another. It's my job to figure out how that information needs to be restructured, re-worded, seen visually, drawn, acted out, compared to a real life example, etc., until the meaning comes through.
How do you help students who are struggling with reading comprehension?
The trick with reading comprehension is to find something that the student can really enjoy; something that is worth getting through if they don't currently like to read. I always start by identifying interests, values, and dreams, and then find material that will spark those interests. When it comes to the harder work of getting through passages that might not be in line with their natural interests, it's a matter of helping them find ways to increase focus while reading, breaking paragraphs down into ideas and groups of ideas, identifying key points, and other basic skills that they'll need all through their education.
What strategies have you found to be most successful when you start to work with a student?
My first strategy is to just ask them about themselves. I need to know who they are so that I can give them individualized attention. Then they can ask me about who I am and how I work. I try to make people comfortable, and instill the same excitement that I feel when starting on a new teaching relationship.
How would you help a student get excited/engaged with a subject that they are struggling in?
We just have to figure out the thing about that subject that they can be interested in. If there is absolutely nothing that they can find interesting about that subject, the next goal is to figure out some of their longer term aspirations, then help them see their studies as stepping stones towards those dreams. One way or another, they have to see a reward in the work that they are doing, whether it is immediate or in the future. Addition of media such as photographs and video, or reframing subjects with real-life examples, can also help students stay engaged.
What techniques would you use to be sure that a student understands the material?
I like to have a student show me their understanding by doing the work themselves. In math, they do similar problems unaided, then explain to me how they worked it out. With reading comprehension, I want them to write out synopses, character lists, plot points and conflicts, and other story elements. I always give a little work to take home so that they can think about their subject in the time between sessions.
How do you build a student's confidence in a subject?
I am realistic about my encouragement and straightforward (but always kind) about areas that need more work or support. When my students do good work, I tell them directly and plainly what was successful, how they have improved, and point out the strengths and skills that they needed to have that success. As long as there is effort, I see only growth and improvement, and I want them to see that too.
How do you evaluate a student's needs?
By asking them, finding out about who they are, observing what they struggle with versus what comes easily, checking in when they seem disengaged, and just generally putting every effort into understanding them as a unique person with individual needs.
What types of materials do you typically use during a tutoring session?
We'll use a variety of materials, from handouts to video, pictures, books, flashcards, or specific study apps for subjects like anatomy and physiology.
How do you adapt your tutoring to the student's needs?
My priority in teaching is to make sure that my students gain the skills and abilities that they or their parents want them to have. My tutoring style is flexible and guided by the goals and intentions of my students or their families.