I graduated from Stonehill College in 2009 with a Bachelor of Arts in English and Communication Studies. Currently, I am a graduate student at Pace University working toward a Master of Science in Teaching Adolescent English Education. I previously lived and taught ESL in Seoul, South Korea for a year and a half. I hold a teaching certificate in TEFL/TESOL as well as a Massachusetts teaching license in English for grades 5-12. Since graduating, I have been an English substitute in the U.S. as well as a full time elementary ESL teacher in South Korea. While in Korea, I also tutored conversational English on the side. While I have many certifications in the field of English, my favorite areas to teach are English literature and writing and anything having to do with ESL. I myself greatly enjoy both reading and writing. In addition, I found it rewarding to help ESL students excel because being able to speak a second language in today's society is so important and also admirable. I believe that the world is a small place and learning to speak English effectively really opens a person up to countless possibilities. In my spare time, I enjoy traveling, running, yoga, reading, and learning to play guitar.
Education & Certification
Undergraduate Degree: Stonehill College - Bachelor in Arts, English
Graduate Degree: Pace University-New York - Masters, Education
Traveling, Running, Yoga, Reading, Guitar
What is your teaching philosophy?
I believe that each learner is unique. It is my job to find a student's strengths and show them how to use those strengths to achieve success in learning English.
What might you do in a typical first session with a student?
In a typical first session, I would try to get to know the student by asking general questions about his or her experiences with the subject as well as questions about general background information. Anything that can help me to know the student better from the beginning will allow me to create goals that are reachable and a plan for achieving those goals.
How can you help a student become an independent learner?
I have a variety of different tips that I would teach to students that would help them to become better independent learners, especially in the subject of reading. I would share my own experiences of ways to become a better independent learner and make sure to guide students with various exercises.
How would you help a student stay motivated?
The best way to make sure that a student stays motivated is to create engaging lesson plans. I would use the information gained in the initial sessions with a student about interests and prior knowledge to create lessons that are interesting and challenging for the student. This will keep the student from becoming bored with the material and will also be motivating.
If a student has difficulty learning a skill or concept, what would you do?
I would look for different ways to teach the skill or concept if a student continues to struggle with it. I would spend extra time reviewing the difficult skill and have the student practice more on his or her own. Once I find the best method to teach the skill to the student, I would have them practice it with that method for homework until I am certain that they have that skill.
How do you help students who are struggling with reading comprehension?
To improve reading comprehension, I would offer students a variety of different tips. First, I would suggest the student try reading for shorter periods of time with breaks. Reading for 30-35 minutes and then taking a break can help students stay focused and understand what they are reading. Second, I would suggest that the student find a quiet place for reading, free from distractions that might disrupt reading comprehension. Third, I would have students monitor their own comprehension. I would assign reading comprehension questions for the student to answer after certain portions of a reading assignment. This will help the them to self-monitor their reading comprehension. These are a few examples of things I would do with a student to improve reading comprehension, but there are many more that I would have on-hand depending on the type of learner I am teaching at the time.
What strategies have you found to be most successful when you start to work with a student?
When I start to work with a student, I try to get to know their interests and learning styles before diving into the material. This helps the student become more comfortable with the session and allows me to cater my lesson specifically to the learning needs of my students.
How would you help a student get excited/engaged with a subject that they are struggling in?
To help a student get engaged in a subject they are struggling with, I would evaluate them to find their strengths first, and then look for some way to incorporate those strengths into my lessons. For example, if a student is a struggling reader, I would find out his or her interests in reading and start by selecting texts that would be interesting to that student. This would get the student engaged in the topic and boost their confidence.
How do you build a student's confidence in a subject?
To build a student's confidence in a subject, I would make sure to practice appropriate strategies and work with that student until I am confident he or she understands the material. It is important to make sure a student understands all aspects of a lesson before moving on so that they can build confidence in their learning and continue to grow.
How do you evaluate a student's needs?
I evaluate a student's needs in multiple ways. Before beginning a lesson or a set of lessons, I would have the student take a pre-assessment in order to evaluate his or her baseline skills. Then I would look for areas where the student struggles and focus on improving those skills first. At the end of a set of lessons, I would give the student another assessment to look for growth or to examine areas of further need.
How do you adapt your tutoring to the student's needs?
I would provide a variety of different activities based on the skill level and interests of the student. This would cater to his or her needs and make the student feel more comfortable in working on subjects that he or she may be struggling with.
What types of materials do you typically use during a tutoring session?
The materials I use during a tutoring session depend on the subject that I am tutoring. A common theme among all subjects is that I try to look for materials that are interesting or engaging for the student. I also use a variety of materials that are both paper-based and web-based. I also have a plethora of worksheets and tools to give students so that they can reference different things they may need when practicing work on their own outside of our sessions together.