I have been a certified HS math teacher for the past 9.5 years.I love helping students. I love football,basketball, and playing old school video games. :) I like to make math fun and will surprise you how I can even make your favorite activities into a math problem because math is everywhere! I try to teach the simplest way and will give step by step advice. I also encourage students to ask questions because I want to see how they are approaching the problem and we will find the easiest way to get the answer.
What is your teaching philosophy?
I think all students have the ability to learn. Some students just take a little more time than others. I also feel that it is never wrong to ask questions. Questioning means that you want to learn more. Also, I try to teach the students the easiest and most efficient way to find the answer. I do stress that steps are followed and not skipped. Math is a building subject. You use what you know previously, which is the foundation, and then as you learn more you build higher and higher. One of my greatest feelings is when I see that a student understands and I will be quick to acknowledge and celebrate those victories. Also, if a student doesn't get the answer right, I will ask why they thought that, so even making mistakes will also be a learning moment. That is what I feel is my teaching philosophy.
What might you do in a typical first session with a student?
First, I will see what they like to do when not doing math. I will also tell them a little about myself. like how I love sports and watch movies. I want to build rapport, and also use that to try to explain math problems using their likes and dislikes. Thus will break the ice and let them know that I think of them as a person and not just a job. Then I will ask what questions they have tonight with their lessons, and we will begin to tackle those problems.
How can you help a student become an independent learner?
I will try to give good notes and examples of similar problems. Then I will teach the student how to use to help on those problems. Also I think I will do some guided practice, letting them do more by themselves each time until they are able to do them on their own.
How would you help a student stay motivated?
Student motivation is important. I will try to just say "don't give up" at first. Then I might crack a joke just to give them a brain break. Sometimes, just by stepping away from it for a few moments, the student's mind will be refreshed, and then we can start solving the problems.
If a student has difficulty learning a skill or concept, what would you do?
Math can be solved different ways. If one way doesn't work right away, I might do something simpler that is related, then show how now it's just one or two more steps. Also I would maybe try a new method that might make more sense due to their learning style.
How do you help students who are struggling with reading comprehension?
I will ask if there are words they don't understand, and then give synonyms that they do know. Also, I will encourage them to read just a few sentences and tell me what they've read about so far. Breaking it up into smaller portions may help them understand what the author is trying to say.