I am a graduate of St. Joseph's College on Long Island, NY. I majored in child study, leading me to graduate with certification in general and special education (birth through 6th grade) in the state of New York. I continued my education at St. John's University in New York, receiving my Master's Degree in Literacy. This degree gave me New York State certification in Literacy, birth through 6th grade.
Since 2010, I have been a substitute teacher on Long Island. This gave me experience working with a diverse range of students. I substitute taught from kindergarten all the way through high school. I was able to develop skills to connect with different age groups of students. I also gained exposure to curriculum across the grades. While substitute teaching, I also tutored students from 1st grade through middle school in many subjects. Most of my students were given to me through school districts using a No Child Left Behind grant, in which students received tutoring in ELA and Math in order to boost classroom grades and state test scores. It was a great experience that allowed me to work regularly with students one on one and in small groups, forming connections with the students and building on the knowledge they gained in the classroom.
When I tutor, I like to make learning as fun as possible! After a long day at school, I know students can sometimes lack the motivation or energy to want to continue learning, and I try to make the experience as enjoyable (while still educational) as I can. I incorporate a lot of technology, through the use of my iPad or laptop. I allow students to supplement their tutoring work with educational applications, websites, and video clips. I like to use as many hands-on activities as I can. I also think my generally upbeat and easy-going personality help me to be flexible in how I approach my tutoring sessions. I never treat two students the same way, and I like to try to base my sessions on the student's needs and interests as much as I can.
I recently moved to Massachusetts and began working as a Pre-K teacher in Arlington. In my free time, I enjoy exploring the city of Boston and the surrounding areas. I love Boston and all there is to do here! I enjoy going to the beach, outdoor activities such as hiking and biking, and relaxing with a good book.
Education & Certification
Undergraduate Degree: St Joseph's College - Bachelor in Arts, Child Study
Graduate Degree: St. John's University - Master of Science, Literacy
State Certified Teacher
Travel, outdoor activities, beach, reading
Elementary School Math
High School English
Study Skills and Organization
Q & A
What might you do in a typical first session with a student?
I like to get to know more about my student. I find out about their interests and talk to them about their own personal concerns, and also find their strengths as well. I like to get to know my student as an individual person, and not just a "fifth grader" or "online student." Often I will give baseline assessments to see if I notice trends in their work to find areas to develop.
How can you help a student become an independent learner?
I like to scaffold students in sessions, so that by the end they are completing a majority of the work independently. This also helps boosts confidence, which is also important to encourage independent learning. Giving extra practice as an extension to what we worked on helps the student become an independent worker as well.
How would you help a student stay motivated?
I like to prepare lessons that are as exciting and engaging as possible. I try to incorporate students' interests wherever I can (i.e. in reading passage selections). Often, at the end of my sessions, I will include a topic-related educational game or online activity if they complete all of their session work.
If a student has difficulty learning a skill or concept, what would you do?
Repetition sometimes can be key in helping a student learn a skill or concept. I would repeat the work with them on various problems or activities, scaffolding them throughout to make sure they are understanding the topic. I would also find visual aids, such as online videos, to help support learning and have the student hear the skill or concept from a different perspective.
How do you help students who are struggling with reading comprehension?
As a literacy certified teacher, I know there are many areas that build reading comprehension. I break apart comprehension into those areas (such as setting, characters, predictions, etc.) and find areas of strength and weakness in each session. If it is an area of weakness, we will work together to develop strategies using passages and real-life reading. Students would also be encouraged to read daily for extra practice.