I started tutoring when I was in high school helping out other students in my school. During this time, I was asked to substitute for a preschool teacher, and that is when I fell in love with teaching. Since then, I have never stopped teaching, working as a tutor and/or as a language teacher. After graduating in Education at a Brazilian University and, before moving to the United States, I owned and directed a tutoring school for five years.
Math is my favorite subject, and I have always had a passion for learning foreign languages. I have studied English since I was eight years old, followed by German and then Spanish. Living in Houston for 15 years, I really improved "my" Spanish. During these years, I have taught Portuguese to foreigners in several language schools, including the Accelerated Learning Program at the University of Houston.
Other than teaching, I love playing tennis, cycling, enjoying the outdoors, and traveling, so I can visit new places and get to know new cultures.
I am an enthusiastic and positive thinking person. I love to help students overcome their difficulties and become more confident and happier.
What is your teaching philosophy?
Teaching and learning come together in a 2-way reciprocal process. Happiness and joy are the basis of the teaching philosophy, respecting each learner individuality.
What might you do in a typical first session with a student?
Try to know as much as I can from the student, focusing on discovering each student individuality, preferences, likes, dislikes, and strengths. Besides that, I introduce myself by presenting my background and experience. Also, we make up a plan for the learning process and possible strategies to achieve the objectives.
How can you help a student become an independent learner?
Giving self-learning activities based on the student's likes. In the first or second lesson, I would help the student find some activity they enjoy doing and try to incorporate language learning activities into their schedule.
How would you help a student stay motivated?
Encouraging them all the time. Sometimes, I'd give them easier activities when there is a lot of difficulty or change the type of activity to make learning more enjoyable.
If a student has difficulty learning a skill or concept, what would you do?
just answered in the last question
How do you help students who are struggling with reading comprehension?
I try reading the text with them, asking easy questions to make them understand the ideas in the text, and (when the answer is wrong) help them by giving them the right answer.
What strategies have you found to be most successful when you start to work with a student?
Let them start with activities they like doing. For example, in learning a language, begin with the competence they prefer: reading, writing, listening, or speaking.
How would you help a student get excited/engaged with a subject that they are struggling in?
Finding some kind of activity they enjoy doing and incorporating the content of learning to it.
What techniques would you use to be sure that a student understands the material?
Asking them questions and giving them exercises to do by themselves for the next class, and correcting every exercise in the beginning of the class.
How do you build a student's confidence in a subject?
Leading them to success while doing exercises, tests, and "live" personal activities.
How do you evaluate a student's needs?
First asking them in the first class, and then by correcting the exercises and during conversation and activities every class.
What types of materials do you typically use during a tutoring session?
Texts, cards, games, CDs, and iPad learning applications.