I graduated from New Albany High School in 2013 as a valedictorian with distinguished honors, and am currently pursuing a double major at The Ohio State University. Though I was an "A" student in high school, there were times where I struggled, but I learned how to overcome difficulties in the classroom. Personal perspective and learning style are key to being academically successful; I have learned the very important skill of how to take information I don't understand, and translate it into a learning style I do. This is what I strive to do for other students in tutoring sessions.
I have about a year and a half of tutoring experience, some of which was private tutoring for younger students, and some of which was volunteer work for high school students.
Learning is a passion for me, and is something I enjoy outside of my university studies. I enjoy reading both fiction and non-fiction, writing occasionally, learning languages, history, and staying up to date on science and tech news. I also play video games, drink far too much coffee, and engage in neighborhood and school social activities. In general, I am a very passionate person and I hope to help others be passionate about whatever they wish to pursue.
Ohio State University - BS and BA, Psychology and Sexuality Studies
ACT English: 31
ACT Reading: 36
What is your teaching philosophy?
My students are people that I'm trying to help, and just as every individual is unique, so is their learning style. Therefore, it is best to learn how my students learn and then cater to that learning style.
What might you do in a typical first session with a student?
I would get to know my students a little bit. I would ask questions about what they're currently working on in school, what subjects they excel at, and the subjects in which they struggle.
How can you help a student become an independent learner?
It is good to challenge a student to solve problems on their own, but first a teacher must give them adequate tools with which to solve them. Providing those tools and those challenges is what I strive to do.
How would you help a student stay motivated?
For students who are already motivated, often a gentle reminder of what is at stake in the collegiate world is enough to encourage them; however, not everyone intends to go to college. Therefore, it can be beneficial to take short breaks in which a fun but educational game can be used to help the student stay on task.
If a student has difficulty learning a skill or concept, what would you do?
The first course of action is to diagnose what exactly is the source of the difficulty. This involves a lot of discussion about how the student is approaching the problem in their mind, and also how they approach problems at which they are successful. Using information about how a student solves problems helps me pose a perspective to the student that makes more sense to them.
How do you help students who are struggling with reading comprehension?
I would recommend a list of vocabulary words common to the level at which they are struggling, and I would also help them by giving general definitions of words that we come across with which they struggle. I would also recommend students spend some time with a thesaurus just as an exercise with which to familiarize themselves with new words. If needed, there are also methods we can use to help students remember the definitions of words. It is also important that the student understands not only the definitions, but the connotations of words in certain contexts.
How would you help a student get excited/engaged with a subject that they are struggling in?
Usually, I will spend a little bit of time throughout the session to discuss the student's plans for college, as well as what majors/minors they may wish to pursue. This generally helps to establish some report with the student, and it gives me a better idea of how to motivate them. A lot of pressure is put on students to take their ACT scores as if it were a reflection of their own worth or intelligence. This truly is not the case, and helping students develop a more relaxed perspective about the ACT often helps remove some stress, which then allows them to enjoy the session.
What techniques would you use to be sure that a student understands the material?
When evaluating whether or not a student understands the material, I usually ask them to complete a few questions designed to assess the particular subject on which we are focusing. Even if the student completed all of the questions successfully, I still ask them to walk me through the process they used to arrive at that answer. This allows me to be sure that they did not develop the answer by luck, and also gives me insight on how the student picks apart problems. The latter is useful in helping the student develop better skills of analysis, or to correct errors of reasoning.
How do you evaluate a student's needs?
Some students are already aware of what areas they need to focus their efforts on, so it is always a good idea to first ask the student what they think they need help with. Following that, or if the student is unsure, I provide questions to assess the student's mastery of a concept or concepts and frequently ask the student what their thought process is while trying to solve the problem. This gives me a general idea of how the student is approaching the problem and where their logic may be strong or flawed.
How do you adapt your tutoring to the student's needs?
My style of tutoring is all about adapting to the student's needs. If I cannot frame the information in a way that makes sense to the student, then I am failing my job. Therefore, I make sure that I do my best to assess how the student learns best.
What types of materials do you typically use during a tutoring session?
It really depends upon the subject being taught as to how I choose my teaching material. For the ACT and other standardized tests, I use sample tests/questions so that the student becomes increasingly familiar with the format of the test for which they are studying. For reading, I will assign the most homework, as reading proficiency is best acquired through extensive practice. For all subjects, I begin with basic questions and then increase the difficulty as the student progresses. I always try to push my students just a bit further than what their teachers ask of them so that the subject matter they cover in class becomes easier.