I am a dynamic, recent Harvard PhD graduate seeking to enrich the lives of others through increasing knowledge, growth, and confidence. I currently reside in Austin, TX, but I am originally from New York City. I attended a private New England boarding school called the Hotchkiss school for high school. I received my BA in International Studies from Brown University. I have been tutoring since I was a sophomore at Brown University. I tutored elementary school students in math and Spanish. Later on, I tutored high school students in Pre-Calculus, Spanish, English, and essay writing. More recently, I have been tutoring young entrepreneurs in Portuguese. Currently, I tutor all levels of Spanish, English grammar and writing, and Reading. I love to travel and meet new people and share wonderful new experiences. I am fluent in Spanish and Portuguese and was fortunate enough to have been able to live in both countries. My teaching style is to ensure that students gain confidence in their own ability to learn. Each student is unique and should be evaluated and assisted on that basis. When I am not tutoring I love to cook, visit local parks and lakes, attend outdoor music concerts, and read. I look forward to working with new students and helping to enrich their educational experience.
Brown University - BA, Development Studies
Harvard University - PhD, Black Studies & Social Anthropology
What is your teaching philosophy?
I seek to create a safe and enriching environment in which learning is seen as a contractual endeavor. I like my students to know that no question is stupid, nor any idea dumb. It is my sincere hope to be able to assist my students in not only understanding subject areas where they are struggling, but to also understand how learning skills can be applied in other areas of life. In a learning environment, everyone is capable of learning from each other.
What might you do in a typical first session with a student?
I would get to know the student and begin to assess their strengths and weaknesses within the subject area to better understand in what manner I may be most effective in helping them.
How can you help a student become an independent learner?
I have discovered over the years that there are certain skills that can applied in different subject areas. I will help the student learn the necessary skills so that they may be able to apply them and continue to excel in a subject on their own.
How would you help a student stay motivated?
I would help a student stay motivated by pointing out her progress and helping her learn to incentivize herself through a self-reward system. If a student can see how much she has improved, it usually boosts confidence, which in turn serves as motivation.
If a student has difficulty learning a skill or concept, what would you do?
I usually try to first understand what aspect of the concept or skill the student is not grasping, and then seek to reconfigure my approach to that concept so that I can better assist the student's understanding.
How do you help students who are struggling with reading comprehension?
I would identify where the difficulty occurs and what exact part of the text the student is not comprehending. Then, I would help the student to articulate what they understood in their own words. If recalling information from the text is the problem, then I would teach the student to do a concept/idea map to help them keep track of names, places, and other key information within the text. After practicing this kind of mapping, students usually begin to do it automatically and without having to write it down.
What strategies have you found to be most successful when you start to work with a student?
Successful strategies usually include getting to know more about the student and their likes and dislikes. I also like to get an understanding of how the student thinks about the subject in which he or she is currently struggling. Often helping them to view the subject differently aids in their ability to approach the subject with more enthusiasm or confidence.
How would you help a student get excited/engaged with a subject that they are struggling in?
By helping the student see that the subject is not as daunting as one might believe, and also helping the student to think about other ways in which the subject is useful in life. Also, by thinking up fun approaches to the subject.
What techniques would you use to be sure that a student understands the material?
Small assignments and quizzes along the way usually help the student to see what is being retained and would also allow me to see what kind of progress the student is making.
How do you build a student's confidence in a subject?
By showing the student the progress that she or he has made within the subject.
How do you evaluate a student's needs?
By observing them and understanding how they approach the subject. It is key to identify the strengths and weaknesses in the earlier sessions.
How do you adapt your tutoring to the student's needs?
Each student is different, and it's up to the tutor to see if that student is more visually or textually-oriented and to then be able to switch strategies, particularly if you see that one is not quite effective.
What types of materials do you typically use during a tutoring session?
Depending on the subject, I might use flashcards for vocabulary boosting. For learning foreign language verbs and conjugations, I use a specific chart that lists all the various verb forms so the student can see them at once and identify the different conjugations and grammatical points.