Everybody learns, and everybody learns differently. The importance of pedagogy, the practice of teaching, cannot be overstated. It is not enough to share knowledge; knowledge must be communicated. This is the philosophy by which I have tutored and by which I currently tutor. With 4th grade students and with college-age students, with students in America and with students in Japan, I have helped new ideas and information take root and blossom to the satisfaction of student and tutor alike. I love those moments of recognition as someone internalizes knowledge, when an unfamiliar idea becomes familiar, and the creative ability such moments foster. My aim as a tutor is to understand how my students learn, so that they can do so most efficiently.
Education & Certification
Undergraduate Degree: University of Nevada-Reno - Bachelor of Science, Mechanical Engineering
Graduate Degree: Vanderbilt - Master of Science, Biomedical Engineering
GRE Quantitative Reasoning: 800
Cooking, exercise, reading (satire and fantasy), painting, snowboarding.
Anatomy & Physiology
High School Biology
High School English
What is your teaching philosophy?
The material should be made real for the students. They should be able to see why it matters to them and how they can utilize it. Rote memorization is not the same as knowledge, and it's good to be a bit pragmatic.
What might you do in a typical first session with a student?
I like to find out how the student feels they learn best. I'll ask what they prefer and attempt different approaches to see what is most effective for them.
How can you help a student become an independent learner?
By showing them the utility of what they're learning and how they can apply it, and by inspiring interest rather than dread of the material.
How would you help a student stay motivated?
By letting the student know all the things they're doing right. It's a tempting, insidious impulse to self-deprecate and self-defeat, and positive, sincere reinforcement helps quell it.
If a student has difficulty learning a skill or concept, what would you do?
I would have us take a new approach. Firstly though, I would start with the fundamentals- the basics of the problem. Unfamiliarity with the principles of a problem can make the greater nuances untenable.
How do you help students who are struggling with reading comprehension?
When I worked with 4th grade students I would let them take their time, though if there was a large word they couldn't read, I would simply say the word so that they could move on. I feel it's a common misconception that we need to goad people to 'sound it out' or to struggle through large and difficult words. This just leads to stress and pressure. By simply giving the pronunciation of a word they're struggling with, making no big show of it, they learn its pronunciation for the future, and they realize the exercise isn't some crucible to dread.
What strategies have you found to be most successful when you start to work with a student?
Finding out about their learning preferences, their concerns, what has and hasn't worked for them in the past, and their goals; essentially learning about the student. From there, openness and a willingness to try different teaching strategies serves well.