I have a strong passion for helping others realize and maximize their potential. It brings me great joy when I know I have helped someone overcome an obstacle.
I earned a BA in Mathematics and an MBA, both from Cal State Fullerton. Although I am
not currently working on any other degrees, I often contemplate going back to earn a Master’s in Mathematics as well.
I have tutored on the academic level for more than 2 years working mostly with junior high and high school students. I usually tutor Math, as it is my strongest subject based on the fact that I have loved Math since I was a child! On occasion, I have also tutored Physics and Chemistry. My goal was to become a High School Math teacher and change the way students feel about this subject.
My teaching philosophy is based on the Socratic Method. My questioning engages
students and allows their minds to use critical thinking while gaining confidence in their problem solving skills.
CalState Fullerton - BA, Mathematics
CalState Fullerton - MBA, Business Administration
What is your teaching philosophy?
I base my teaching philosophy on the Socratic Method. I engage students by asking questions that encourage critical thinking and problem solving. I find that this method increases their confidence with the subject matter.
If a student has difficulty learning a skill or concept, what would you do?
When a student has difficulty with a new concept, I ask questions that help me uncover the deeper issue. Sometimes, it's a lack of fundamentals; other times, it's a context issue. I solve the underlying issue, which usually eases the understanding of a new skill.
What strategies have you found to be most successful when you start to work with a student?
When I first meet a student, I like to get to know them, along with their areas of struggle. I also like to know about their successes, even if it's not related to the subject matter. I want to know how their mind processes information and comprehends new concepts in order to tailor the tutoring to their needs.
What might you do in a typical first session with a student?
I like to get to know the student and see how he/she feels about math in general. I then share a bit about my background and, more importantly, my Socratic tutoring strategy. I explain what it is and how I feel, and that I have experienced that it is very effective.
How can you help a student become an independent learner?
By using the Socratic method, my goal is to train their mind to ask the same questions I ask them when they are working on a problem. I believe that repetition creates retention.
How would you help a student stay motivated?
I use several methods including: Small Wins and SMART Goals. I always encourage and congratulate students when they achieve an obstacle. I build on this accomplishment to let them conquer a more challenging problem. I also advise students to come back to a problem if they are stuck on it. They're surprised how they're able to figure out the answer as they work on more problems.
How would you help a student get excited/engaged with a subject that they are struggling in?
Since I tutor math, I often run into students who "hate" math because they are not understanding it well, falling behind, and/or struggling with maintaining a passing grade. Most have the attitude of "when will I ever use this?" I share real-world math examples that are related to them, or their hobbies, and demonstrate how math is used.
What techniques would you use to be sure that a student understands the material?
I have the students explain to me their work. If they get the right answer, I ask how they attained it to make sure they are understanding, retaining, and applying the lessons.
How do you evaluate a student's needs?
I assess the student's needs as I observe him/her working on homework. I watch the steps he/she takes in solving a problem. I ask questions, and ask if I can show them a more efficient method.
How do you adapt your tutoring to the student's needs?
The student's needs will dictate the pace and language I use in tutoring. In mathematics, sometimes students are lost with certain terminology. They are not understanding the concept or even what the problem is asking. Therefore, I have to further explain a concept using words they are more familiar with. I then advise them to use the new terms.
What types of materials do you typically use during a tutoring session?
I like to use the student's material such as textbooks, worksheets, etc. I prefer the material they are using, so they can feel very comfortable with it, and be able to work on their own. More importantly, using their own textbook allows them to keep pace with the class.
How do you build a student's confidence in a subject?
I tutor by asking them questions so they come up with the process of the solution and eventually the answer itself. In the case where they're unable to do so, I model an example, and then guide them through another example before having them do a problem all on their own.