I love to help others learn! After completing my B.A. in Political Science (as well as a minor in Middle Eastern Studies) at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, I am currently halfway through earning my teaching license through UW-Stevens Point in Broad-field Social Science at the secondary education level. As such, I have a rich background in the content knowledge of history, political science, geography, and other fields that are often assessed in placement tests. My certification program has also given me the tools for effective instruction, as well as opportunities to work in real classrooms with students. Aside from this, I have taken my own initiative to teach several original lessons at my old high school. With this background and experience combined, I make a great tutor!
By getting to know my clients' educational goals and interests, I provide instruction that is both comprehensive and engaging. The more a student interacts with content in ways that suit their personal learning style, the better they will recall the information in the future - especially come test time! This belief is a major component of my teaching philosophy, especially as it pertains to tutoring. The other part of my philosophy is that teaching should be a collaborative process. Instead of the instructor providing answers to the student, guided exploration should drive study. When learning or reviewing content, the tutor and student should work through the information together, as opposed to the tutor just verbally transferring knowledge.
I enjoy several other hobbies aside from teaching, including producing music and theater, reading, writing, playing video games and watching movies! I currently work as a composer and audio engineer for Games+Learning Society, a non-profit studio that makes educational video games. I am also involved in several other video game projects with smaller studios. This work has opened my eyes to seemingly unconventional teaching tools that are on the rise - and can be very effective! I also have written a full-length comedy musical with my former college roommate, which we are looking to get professionally produced in the coming year. As a script writer, my voice and editing have flourished on the page due to my previous English writing experience.
I do my best to make learning an engaging and personal process in which my students can meet their goals through guided instruction. I believe I have the background, skills, and experience to do just that!
University of Wisconsin-Madison - Bachelors, Political Science
University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point - Current Grad Student, Broadfield Social Science (Postbacc teacher cert.)
AP US History
College Level American History
College Political Science
GED Social Studies
High School English
High School Geography
High School Level American History
High School Political Science
High School World History
What is your teaching philosophy?
My teaching philosophy involves how I teach and how I honor my students.
What might you do in a typical first session with a student?
First, I would take the time to get to know the student! What are their interests? What do they like/dislike about school, or about the course with which I'll be helping them? Next, we would discuss goals. What is it specifically that the student wants to accomplish? What's the best plan to get there? After all of this, I would go over the materials the student has available, and begin discussing what specific areas of the course have been challenging them. Should time permit, we may even go into some review of the topics. By the end of this first meeting, we will have identified key areas to focus on, and will have a personalized outline of how we will reach the student's goal together. That way, each successive meeting will be as productive as possible!
How can you help a student become an independent learner?
One of the biggest ways I can help a student become an independent learner is to help them identify how they learn best. Not every student absorbs information the same way. Some prefer to re-read a chapter, while others like to approach information through a different medium. Depending on their preferences, there are numerous resources I would suggest they start using. Thanks to the internet, a wealth of videos and websites are available that make learning more engaging and customizable. Additionally, numerous study tools exist that work well with different learning styles. Working together, my student and I will find ways and resources to help them become more confident in learning on their own.
How would you help a student stay motivated?
One of the biggest ways any student can lose motivation is if the content doesn't seem relevant to them. I know I've felt that way before! Fortunately, the social sciences are all about people, and there are a myriad of ways content can be connected to the individual student. Finding personal meaning in what one is learning is essential not only for understanding the material, but for remembering it later on. Keeping the material relevant to a student's larger life goals is also important. Whether it is graduating high school, taking an Advanced Placement test, or getting accepted into colleges, each course is a step along the path to academic success. Helping the student to see how mastery of the content furthers them to their greater goals can cause some of the strongest motivation.
If a student has difficulty learning a skill or concept, what would you do?
If the student is able to identify what specific part of a concept or skill is difficult, then we will be able to approach it directly. I may assign a few videos that explain the concept from a new angle, or in an illustrative way. Or perhaps the student and I will make a "concept map" of the topic together that breaks down the components of an idea more clearly. Finally, I would offer both formal and informal assessments throughout tutoring to verify that the student is making progress with the skill. These assessments might include discussions, quizzes, or short responses to prompts.