It is my desire to inspire students to their greatest potential and to cultivate in them a lifelong love for learning.
Undergraduate Degree: Grace University - Bachelors, English
Reading, Writing, Art, Theater, Music, Softball, etc.
What is your teaching philosophy?
My desire is to inspire students to their greatest potential and to cultivate a love for learning that will grow throughout their lives.
What might you do in a typical first session with a student?
My first step is to get to know the student I'm working with. I want to know their personality, their strengths and weaknesses, their learning style, and what makes them who they are. Once we've gotten to know each other a little bit, we can break the big goal of studying and learning down into smaller, more manageable steps.
How can you help a student become an independent learner?
I don't want to just give a student information. I want to equip them with the skills and tools needed to continue to learn on their own by teaching them study and memory habits, critical thinking skills, and how to find their own desire for learning.
How would you help a student stay motivated?
The definition of insanity is doing the same thing, the same way, over and over, expecting a different result. If an approach to learning isn't working, it's time to try something new. There are so many ways to teach any concept, and it is my goal to find the ones that will help the individual student learn the best by catering to and working with their learning style.
How do you help students who are struggling with reading comprehension?
The hardest part of reading comprehension is attaching meaning to the words, sentences, and paragraphs you are putting together. Beginning with determining at what level the student is struggling, I find games and strategies to help the student pause and think about the words they are seeing.
What techniques would you use to be sure that a student understands the material?
The best test of knowledge is teaching. You know you fully understand something if you can explain it to an eight-year-old. My best assessment would be to have the student "teach me back" what they have learned. Then, we can both see what they don't understand very well and need more time on.
How do you build a student's confidence in a subject?
Always start from a place the student is comfortable and familiar. They should have a foundation to go from and introduce building blocks that are small and manageable. There should always be something just a little too hard for them that they are working towards, but we will review what they already know to reinforce it and to give them confidence in what they have learned and their progress.
How do you evaluate a student's needs?
Depending on what is being studied for, each student will need to show differing specific performances. Beyond those assessments, however, a student should be able to exhibit a full understanding of a subject (enough to teach it to a classmate). Through careful observation of a student's learning, I will track their strengths and weaknesses and take note of areas that we can improve upon.
How do you adapt your tutoring to the student's needs?
I personally am a Kinesthetic learner. I like the hands on, do it myself experience, and I have a hard time learning by observation. Each student has different styles of learning that suit them best, and the first thing that I do in tutoring is to determine their ideal learning style. Once I can figure out how they learn best, coming up with alternative approaches to the material that suit them is simple. For example, instead of simply showing them pictures of a sentence diagram (visual learner), a more hands on learner should have word cut outs that they can physically arrange and identify themselves.
What strategies have you found to be most successful when you start to work with a student?
Once a student's learning style has been determined, I give a projection of the overall goal. It is good for the student to know where they are and where they are going throughout this process so there is a sense of accomplishment when we achieve each step. A teaching style should be flexible and fluid based on the progress of a student. If one method doesn't seem to be working, try mixing it up a little and showing the student some diversity in learning techniques.
How would you help a student get excited/engaged with a subject that they are struggling in?
A lack of enthusiasm often comes from the subject being too difficult or too easy. The ideal is to find attainable, yet challenging goals for students to come to in their studies. Each subject can be connected to something that a student cares about and that can bring another element of interest into the area of study. I work to remove apathy and replace it with passion.
What types of materials do you typically use during a tutoring session?
I always start with the course material that the student already has, so as not to be in conflict with study methods. Beyond what is provided, I will pull from a Ginn English program, MLA and APA standards, and citation sources, such as Purdue Owl.