I am a native Spanish speaker, born of Mexican parents. I have traveled thru Mexico, Belize, and Guatemala and I know that my knowledge of Spanish has opened doors that I would not have been able to open otherwise. It was an enriching experience sharing stories with locals in Spanish and also seeing how many dialects exist in Central America! I know I shared many English words and phrases as well. It is beautiful to bridge the gap between two languages.
I am pursuing a degree in Early Childhood Education and hope that I can integrate both Spanish and English into a career working with children. I have studied at Austin Community College in Austin, Texas, and I will be continuing my education here along the Front Range in Boulder, Colorado.
I love to blur the line between teaching and learning and I find that this is one of the keys to being a successful tutor. My previous job as an Assistant Guide in a Montessori School taught me that in fact we do not really "teach" others - we can only guide others to learn for themselves. Having the right tools, resources, and setting ourselves up for success is all it takes! I love watching my son play, and I know beneath the surface of his play he is learning more than I can ever understand. I am actively working on creating a living classroom in my home, bringing the world to my tiny son. Beyond that, you can find me biking around town with my little family.
How do you help students who are struggling with reading comprehension?
I would start by helping the student identify the specific components of the reading material that may be presenting difficulty, such as grammar, pronunciation, word definition, or lack of cultural understanding. As a tutor, I can help explain and clarify from a variety of ways and perspectives.
How would you help a student get excited/engaged with a subject that they are struggling in?
I would fuse their personal interests with the subject in such a way that it becomes personal for the student as well. Finding commonalities between any subject and one's own personal life can bring a new level of appreciation and self-motivation to learn. With Spanish, for example, it is fun to also learn about the culture and traditions of Spanish speaking countries and their people.
What techniques would you use to be sure that a student understands the material?
I would ask the student to explain the material back to me, and if the explanation makes sense in their own words, then the student is showing a level of understanding and perhaps mastery! I may also use quizzes and worksheet completion-or ask for a short paragraph summarizing the material.
How do you build a student's confidence in a subject?
By acknowledging "small victories" and being a positive, encouraging voice, no matter what!