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Ryan

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I am a Live Artist, critical writer, and poet. I hold a BA in English Writing with an emphasis on poetry from the University of Pittsburgh. In September 2014, I successfully completed an MA in Performance & Visual Practices from the University of Brighton, UK. From 2007-2013, I taught full time conversational English classes at a public middle school in Seoul, South Korea. While I am comfortable tutoring a range of subjects, I am most passionate about Critical & Cultural Theory, Creative & Critical Writing, Performance Studies, and Theatre. Any subjects or areas involving the arts and culture are of particular interest to me. Teaching is about sharing, so my personal style reflects my work and interests. I am a lifelong learner and view education as an opportunity through which to grow. In my free time, I love to read nonfiction, visit galleries, cook spicy Korean food for my friends, practice foreign languages, and travel.

Ryan’s Qualifications

Education & Certification

Undergraduate Degree: University of Pittsburgh-Pittsburgh Campus - Bachelor in Arts, English Writing

Graduate Degree: University of Brighton - Master of Arts, Performance and Visual Practices

Hobbies

art, aesthetics, performance, poetry, Korean cuisine, foreign languages, urban life, travel

Tutoring Subjects

Adult ESL/ELL

American Literature

Basic Computer Literacy

College Application Essays

College English

College Essays

College Level American Literature

Comparative Literature

Creative Writing

English

English Grammar and Syntax

ESL/ELL

Essay Editing

Gifted

High School English

High School Level American Literature

IB Literature and Performance

Introduction to Poetry

Korean

Languages

Literature

Other

Philosophy

Phonics

Poetry

Poetry Writing

Public Speaking

Reading

Social Sciences

Summer

Technology and Computer Science

Writing


Q & A

What is your teaching philosophy?

In my experience as an instructor and learner, we are able to do difficult work when we are the most comfortable speaking about it. If we can process information and then share it in our own way, with our own words, then we have accomplished a good deal of the learning process towards a fuller comprehension and retention.

What might you do in a typical first session with a student?

Being comfortable and open is important to any type of learning. It is necessary to be on level ground, as well. At that first session, we would share a bit about ourselves and our relationships to learning. I specifically ask my students what they want to achieve. It's essential to how we move forward.

How can you help a student become an independent learner?

If we can communicate our understanding to another person, then we are more than capable of moving independently through all subjects and thoughts. Communication and understanding do not necessarily mean that we agree with everything that we learn about or read or solve. An independent learner will be capable of opening up discourse, asking questions, and posing arguments. I help my students become independent learners by ensuring that they are confident critical readers and thinkers.

How would you help a student stay motivated?

Motivation is often tied to our goals and level of interest. I remind my students of the initial goals they set out for themselves in regards to this particular lesson, subject, or work. I also try to be receptive to a student's interests and passions. Oftentimes we can motivate ourselves by finding ways to apply new knowledge to our personal or everyday lives.

If a student has difficulty learning a skill or concept, what would you do?

Everyone has to take a step back, sometimes five steps. And often times, if we are totally lost, we will have to reevaluate the information or task. We are all human, but we learn in very different ways. My toughest job is paying close attention to how my student is processing and applying new knowledge. Using that student's strengths in one area may enable them to complete otherwise difficult work.

How do you help students who are struggling with reading comprehension?

We must all take our time, especially when closely reading a new text. I tell my students to use other techniques they have available to them. For example, students of algebra have to write out and/or memorize long equations and proofs. A student of literature should also be doing more than just reading the words on the page. If a student takes notes while reading, she may start to remember and interpret the work more clearly. Eventually, she will be able to write less and read more.

How would you help a student get excited/engaged with a subject that they are struggling in?

Interests! Applications! You must find those connections. I've had middle school ESL students become very engaged with reading poetry by sharing material that was specific to their lives, their interests, experiences, passions, and so on. Likewise for my students struggling with philosophy or theory, we ask ourselves questions: How is this useful to my life? Have I ever thought about X? Did I ever do Y?