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Benjamin

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My goal as a teacher is to create an educational environment that encourages both instructor and students to learn and to grow as learners through authentic experience, collaboration with one another, and active engagement with material. I believe that the role of a teacher is not to merely tell content to a student, but rather to act as navigator while the student propels him or herself forward into the uncharted terrain of a new subject. My teaching style focuses on helping students take ownership of their learning so that they continue to succeed long after working with me.

I received both my undergraduate and graduate degrees from the University of California, Berkeley in Religious Studies and Folklore respectively. I wrote my Masters Thesis on the Culture and Music of American Jewish summer camp, and am currently in the process of turning my thesis into a book. Over the last several years, in addition to earning my Masters Degree, I have also taught in a variety of capacities ranging from rock 'n' roll school to children's music to leading discussion sections for Berkeley undergraduates as a Graduate Student Instructor.

While I teach a variety of subjects, I am most passionate about helping students edit their own writing and develop their literary voice. Although knowledge of math, science, and history are vital, expressing oneself in writing is perhaps the most difficult yet critically important skill for succeeding in our society. As one who has struggled with writing in the past but now feels ownership over his voice, I find helping others develop their writing and editing techniques to be incredibly rewarding.

When I am not teaching or writing, I enjoy playing guitar and singing with other people, playing and watching basketball, watching football, and hiking in nature.

Benjamin’s Qualifications

Education & Certification

Undergraduate Degree: University of California-Berkeley - Bachelor in Arts, Religious Studies

Graduate Degree: University of California-Berkeley - Master of Arts, Folklore

Hobbies

Music, Guitar, Basketball, Football, Science Fiction, Hiking