I am an English Instructor at a local Jacksonville high school. In the last 10 years, I have taught English I/Honors, English II/Honors, Reading, AP Lang, AP Lit, ENC1101, and ENC1102. I enjoy tutoring because of the one-on-one, focused instruction. My main purpose is to prepare every student for college and that starts at the elementary level; all of my methods and learning strategies work together in order to ensure that every student does learn what he/she needs to know to enable success in elementary, middle, high school and beyond.
Florida State University - Bachelors, English Literature/English Education
University of North Florida - Masters, English
SAT Composite: 1300
SAT Math: 650
SAT Verbal: 650
ACCUPLACER Arithmetic Prep
CLEP College Algebra
CLEP English Literature
College Level American Literature
COMPASS Mathematics Prep
Elementary School Math
FCAT 2.0 Prep
High School English
High School Level American Literature
High School Writing
HSPT Math Prep
HSPT Quantitative Prep
ISEE-Lower Level Mathematics Achievement
ISEE-Middle Level Mathematics Achievement
ISEE-Middle Level Quantitative Reasoning
ISEE-Middle Level Writing
ISEE-Upper Level Mathematics Achievement
ISEE-Upper Level Quantitative Reasoning
Study Skills and Organization
What might you do in a typical first session with a student?
I would bring an array of material to first determine the area of struggle, because a good writer, for example, may struggle with sentence structuring; however, another writer may need help with some elements of grammar.
How can you help a student become an independent learner?
Students need to be first taught how to take notes and listen to the instruction. I also encourage students to break ideas and assignments into smaller ones so that the learning can be more progressive and not as overwhelming.
How would you help a student stay motivated?
I am naturally encouraging. I try to allow students to see where they are growing and where they are progressing, because sometimes it is difficult to see the growth.
If a student has difficulty learning a skill or concept, what would you do?
I would scaffold the assignment; breaking the ideas into smaller parts so students can more easily assimilate the information. The scaffolding works to enable differentiation more effectively.
How do you help students who are struggling with reading comprehension?
Students need constant exposure to new material at all times. I would bring several different genres about the same topic, so students can extend knowledge beyond just one text. We would also focus on vocabulary instruction and responding by writing at all times. Once students become confident as writers, their reading comprehension usually improves drastically.
What strategies have you found to be most successful when you start to work with a student?
I model everything first. I definitely believe in the "I Do, We Do, You Do" method, so students see me modeling the concept, we practice together, and then, they can do some independent/guided assignments.
What is your teaching philosophy?
I believe all students can learn or grow; it may just take some extra time, effort, and a varying array of strategies. Each student should be given a customized experience, because not every student learns in the same way. I try to provide every student with scaffolded instruction, so that every student can build up to what they need to know.
How would you help a student get excited/engaged with a subject that they are struggling in?
I am a very gregarious person, and as a high school teacher, I regularly come into contact with students who might not be initially engaged; however, I work to make sure that they engage by modeling what they need to do, so they feel as if they can accomplish their goals. When it comes to writing, I try to ensure that everything students write about will connect with them in some way in order to encourage ownership.
What techniques would you use to be sure that a student understands the material?
I give constant, but small assessments, to check for learning. Every session, I would do a small check at the start of the session and at least 2-3 checks for understanding or demonstration of a skill to verify whether or not a student needs practice. I am big believer that students need constant practice to learn and consistently achieve in any subject area.
How do you build a student's confidence in a subject?
I might have to provide a more in-depth explanation of the subject and check for missing skills. For example, if a student is struggling in algebra, he/she might be also struggling to remember basic multiplication/division facts or fractions. When it comes to writing, I use a very basic outline so students feel comfortable. We start with small paragraphs and move up to essays. I try to scaffold every assignment.
How do you evaluate a student's needs?
There are many ways to check for understanding. Demonstration of the skill is necessary; typically, when we begin sessions, I would ask a student to model what they already know and build from there. I have to know where the student is before I can help them go where they want to go.
How do you adapt your tutoring to the student's needs?
Because I have been teaching for a long time, I am accustomed to working with a variety of learning strategies. If something is not working, I try something else. Beyond that, I try to help fill in the gaps. If a student struggles with a more basic element, we review and then move on to ensure that future growth can take place.
What types of materials do you typically use during a tutoring session?
I use lots of paper, as practice is key. Before a lesson, I will typically do some research on the subject unless I have taught the subject for many years. I prefer that students purchase test prep materials to practice from throughout the week or to bring material from school so that the learning can directly connect to their achievement in school.