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Nicole

I am a dedicated person who loves to see students succeed. I love learning, and if I come across something I'm not sure of I will not stop looking for the answer until I find it. I strongly believe that education is vitally important to success in society. I will be patient in helping each student understand concepts, and not just finishing the homework. I work with students who have special needs, so I am able to adjust my style of teaching to suit different students' individual needs.

Undergraduate Degree:

 Grove City College - Bachelors, Sociology

Music and singing, movies, gymnastics

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

In a typical first session, I would take a few minutes to get to know each other and to go over the expectations of the student, parent, and myself (what the goal is for tutoring). I would also try to assess the level the student is at in order to determine the best strategy for tutoring that individual.

How can you help a student become an independent learner?

I can help a student become an independent learner by asking them questions to guide them to the correct answer instead of just giving it to them. I would help the student learn to use resources (notes, textbooks, internet) to search for the answer by himself or herself.

How would you help a student stay motivated?

I would help a student stay motivated by praising effort and accuracy instead of just saying what they are doing wrong. I would help them to set goals, and sometimes I would offer some sort of reward for meeting those goals (i.e. stickers, lollipop, or something else that motivates that particular student).

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

If a student has difficulty with a skill or concept, I would try to break it down further or teach it a different way according to what that student responds to/understands already. If I'm not having success, I might search or ask for advice from other tutors/teachers for ideas. I would not give up!

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

I would help a student get excited/engaged with a subject by trying to relate it to something in their life, particularly something they're interested in. I would also try to build their confidence by pointing out their successes in that subject.

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

I would ensure that a student understands the material by watching them complete an exercise (i.e. math problems, questions) on their own and obtaining a proper answer. I could also have them explain it back to me in their own words.

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

I build a student's confidence in a subject by praising their efforts and successes, as well as starting them out at a level at which they have already achieved success and then building on that using small steps.

How do you evaluate a student's needs?

I evaluate a student's needs by watching them work on their own. I ask them to tell me how they reached a certain answer or to explain a definition or concept to me and evaluate the accuracy of their answer and how much they struggled to reach it.

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

When a student is struggling with reading comprehension, first I make sure they know the vocabulary that is used in the passage. (If not, we look it up so they do understand the vocabulary). After that, we read the passage again and discuss what they think it means. We can break the passage down into smaller chunks for easier comprehension, and I try to prompt them to pick out the important information. I try to rephrase things if they are really struggling. And ultimately we can work together to piece the meaning of the entire passage back together.

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

The most important thing to success with a new student is a personal connection. If I can connect with a student on some level, they will learn to trust me and even look forward to our sessions. Students are more willing to do their best work and be vulnerable/take risks (like answering questions they aren't positive they know the answers to) when they trust the person they are working with. A personal connection shows the student you care about them and makes them feel valued. It fosters a safe learning environment. A personal connection means I can know better ways to motivate that particular student because I'm familiar with their interests and disinterests, their strengths and weaknesses. Also, connecting lessons to the student's life helps the student's success.

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

I adapt my tutoring to students' needs by first assessing their current levels, then adjusting my lessons so they are not too easy or too difficult for that student. I would use the appropriate level of vocabulary, motivational tactics, etc. for the student's current academic and developmental level. If a student benefits from simpler vocabulary, more processing time, fewer or simpler steps in a process, etc. then that is what I adjust for in order to achieve maximum student potential.

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

Especially when tutoring math, I love using dry erase boards. I also tend to make study guides for different topics with key facts or equations to know as well as steps to solve different types of problems. I always have scrap paper and a calculator available, and I always encourage pencil because mistakes are inevitable. Sometimes I use a textbook or worksheets and notes a student provides from school in order to stick with the methods their teacher uses (so as not to confuse the student). I often use objects at hand when manipulatives are needed, unless I know ahead of time that they will be useful.

What is your teaching philosophy?

My Teaching Philosophy: Children are our future. I believe each and every child has the potential to bring something unique and special to the world. I strive to help children develop their potential by believing in them as capable individuals. I will assist children in discovering who they are and all that they are capable of, helping them to develop respect for themselves and their achievements. My instruction aims to assist in preparing them for the real world where things aren't just handed to them. I believe that each child is a unique individual who needs a secure, caring, and stimulating atmosphere in which to grow and mature. It is my desire as an educator to help students meet their fullest potential. I believe that a child can reach their fullest potential when they are engaged in what they are learning. It is important to students.