I enjoy working with people in an intellectually stimulating setting. I have gained the most satisfaction from tutoring not by pushing people beyond their perceived limits. I can simultaneously make people see the justification behind my passion for the sciences and encourage them to open their minds to it. My students actively sought out my help, and I wanted to live up to my role as an authority in my field.
I like to set an agenda for each student in our sessions in order to create a structure in which they could relax and organize their thoughts. I spent the first two to three minutes listening to them talk about their day and their interests and hobbies to connect with them as a person and find out what learning style might fit them best. For example, I notice that visual learners would pay attention to my hand movements and verbal learners sometimes write down everything that I say. I then review laws and concepts that are fundamental to understanding chemistry and frequently relate them to popular topics such as sports, weather, and family.
I plan let the students dictate the pace for the last half hour of each session. I ask a few questions to confirm that they understand what we are going over, but for the most part, my hope is for them to propose and answer their own questions. I know that every student has the scientific skills to recognize a pattern, relate the concept to something they know, and use logic, and a successful session entails that the student feels the same way.
The University of Texas at Austin - BS, Biochemistry
MCAT Physical Sciences: 11
High School Biology
High School Chemistry
Middle School Science
What is your teaching philosophy?
To guide the students so that they are able to answer their own questions.
What might you do in a typical first session with a student?
Get to know them better on a personal level, and then set an agenda to make sure all of the tricky concepts are addressed.
How can you help a student become an independent learner?
Check for understanding and boost their confidence, even when solving difficult problems.
How would you help a student stay motivated?
Encourage them to keep going.