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Rachel

As a teacher for many years, I've consistently seen how valuable personalized, one-on-one academic support can be for my students. I've spent many hours working individually with students long after the school day ends to help them prep for the ACT, polish their English papers, or understand a math concept. I know that every student learns differently, and as a teacher and tutor I aim to give my students a diversity of learning approaches so that we can figure out which one works best for them. I love getting to know my students personally so that I can best match my teaching style to the type of person and learner they are.

I have a B.A. in History from Brown University and a Masters of Science in Environmental Education, plus over 7 years of teaching experience. I don't give my students the answers; I give them the tools to be successful in whatever they pursue, and I do my best to ensure that we have fun in the process.

Undergraduate Degree:

 Brown University - Bachelors, History

Graduate Degree:

 Antioch University New England - Masters, Environmental Education

SAT Math: 740

SAT Verbal: 800

AP Calculus BC: 5

AP English Literature: 5

AP US History: 5

AP Microeconomics: 4

AP U.S. Government & Politics: 4

Hiking, playing guitar, running, gardening

What is your teaching philosophy?

There is no one right way to teach or to learn. As an educator, I make it my goal find creative and diverse ways to teach, because I know every student has the capacity for success with the right tools and support.

What might you do in a typical first session with a student?

When I first meet a student, I get to know them on a personal level so that I can better support them. This includes not just how they work as a learner, but also their own goals, as well as their outside interests. The more information, the better.

How can you help a student become an independent learner?

Tutoring isn't about giving students the answers; it's about giving them the tools to find the answers themselves. With every problem, I'll help my students understand the underlying concepts so they can carry those skills with them.

How would you help a student stay motivated?

I help my students set small and big goals, and I believe it's important to regularly reflect and celebrate achievements. Seeing one's progress helps students be motivated to continue.

If a student has difficulty learning a skill or concept, what would you do?

It's important to find multiple ways to approach a given problem so students can try a different approach if the first one doesn't work for them. Practice and repetition are also important, but so is flexibility.

How do you help students who are struggling with reading comprehension?

I think it's ideal to start with readings that interest the student and move forward from there. We also take it slow and really break the readings down as far as possible, so that students learn how to look for clues that can help them grasp the bigger picture.

What strategies have you found to be most successful when you start to work with a student?

Building a supportive relationship is key from the start so that the student feels motivated, and feels like they can make mistakes and ask questions without judgment. I also want it to be clear that tutoring is a two-way relationship.

How would you help a student get excited/engaged with a subject that they are struggling in?

I think there are multiple ways to engage with any subject, so finding diverse approaches can help a struggling student reconnect. For example, if reading is a challenge, find readings that focus on a topic of interest. If math is hard, I try to use real-world examples to engage. There are ways to do this with every subject.

What techniques would you use to be sure that a student understands the material?

It's helpful to assess understanding before, during, and after going over a concept, so that you can be sure of whether you're making progress. Practice questions and qualitative feedback both can help get a better picture of both comprehension and confidence.

How do you build a student's confidence in a subject?

Confidence comes best when students feel comfortable with the tools they are given, and know that they can use them in various ways. I try to be supportive and congratulatory when success is achieved, and I also make sure that students don't just solve questions but also really understand the process.

How do you evaluate a student's needs?

I try to evaluate student needs from day one. The first step is simply getting to know the student as an individual: what are their goals? How do they like to learn? Why are they getting help? What else makes them unique? I also assess their understanding of a particular subject before diving in, so that I can tailor my teaching to the particular student.

How do you adapt your tutoring to the student's needs?

I have an arsenal of approaches so that I can teach material in a variety of ways. This helps me adapt both at the start, based on what I know up front about a student, but also as I progress, based on what I perceive as we move forward.

What types of materials do you typically use during a tutoring session?

I like to use not just basic tools like paper, pens, books, etc., but also tangible materials, depending on the topic. Science in particular, I believe, is often learned best when experienced. Math comprehension, too, is frequently solidified by manipulating tangible objects and not just answering questions on paper.