I am currently a second year Master of Social Work student at the University of Illinois at Chicago. I have spent time teaching English as a language assistant in Madrid, Spain, which allowed me to pursue my interests in languages, traveling, and tapas! I have a great deal of experience working with children of all ages. I have worked as a babysitter, camp counselor, tutor and teacher. I enjoy tutoring all subjects -I like trying to explain subjects in a new way that makes them interesting for my students. I do my best to make learning as fun and creative as possible, using whatever method works best for the student.
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign - BS and BA, Psychology & Spanish
University of Illinois at Chicago - MSW, Social Work
ACT Composite: 32
Elementary School Math
High School English
Study Skills and Organization
What is your teaching philosophy?
I believe in building confidence and using a student's strengths and interests to foster a productive learning environment.
What might you do in a typical first session with a student?
I typically first try to get to know the student by explaining a little bit about myself, as well as asking the student about their own interests. I also ask what it is they hope to get out of tutoring. Are they hoping to raise their scores? Learn about something new? Keep current with their homework? Following this, I usually come up with a loose plan with the student about how we want our sessions to go. Then we get to work!
How can you help a student become an independent learner?
I do my best to avoid lecturing, and try to use what the student already knows in order to guide them in finding the right answer. I also try to bring in as many outside resources as possible (YouTube videos, articles, etc.) to make connections to the real world.
How would you help a student stay motivated?
Encouragement! I do my best to keep track of my students' progress so they can see how much they've improved week to week. I also try to stay solution-oriented. If they're feeling frustrated, I try to help them figure out exactly what about the subject is frustrating and how we can work on it together.
How do you help students who are struggling with reading comprehension?
In my experience, I find that it works best to break down the reading into smaller sections and try and summarize as we go through it. If the reading comprehension issue is within test prep (like on the ACT), I explain how to use the questions to guide the reading process.
How would you help a student get excited/engaged with a subject that they are struggling in?
In my experience, students usually feel excited about a subject when: 1. they feel like they understand it, and 2. they can see how it relates to their lives. Explaining the subject is, of course, part of the tutoring process. I try to do this while showing them real-world examples, so they can see why the subject is relevant.
What types of materials do you typically use during a tutoring session?
This depends on the subject. If I am tutoring test prep, I like to use flashcards for vocabulary and prep books to try and simulate as close to an actual exam as possible. If it's a subject for school, such as English, Spanish or psychology, I like to show videos and play games that reinforce the material.
If a student has difficulty learning a skill or concept, what would you do?
Try and try again! But using different methods, of course. If a student is having trouble learning a particular concept, there must be a reason. I would try and get to the root of the problem, and go from there.
What strategies have you found to be most successful when you start to work with a student?
Listening attentively, patience, and a sense of humor. Tutoring in a subject they are having trouble with can sometimes be stressful for a student, and I try to begin by eliminating some of that stress.
What techniques would you use to be sure that a student understands the material?
I like to practice a skill immediately after learning/reviewing it. This shows whether a student has fully understood the concept, and helps build confidence.
How do you build a student's confidence in a subject?
Practice! The best way to be sure you understand a skill is to keep practicing the material. To keep this from becoming boring, I try to introduce the material in new ways that will test the same skill.
How do you evaluate a student's needs?
By listening to the student and by paying attention. A student is usually the best judge of what exactly they're struggling with, so they'll know what they need. I also pay attention when a student is doing homework or studying for an exam so I can see where they're doing well and where they need to work a little harder.