A photo of Malinda, a tutor from Grinnell College

Malinda

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I love teaching students about math and science. I like to connect these concepts with the physical world to help better motivate and excite students about learning.
My experiences with teaching my own two daughters in addition to classroom teaching experience have given me the tools that I need to help connect students to math and science.

Malinda’s Qualifications

Education & Certification

Undergraduate Degree: Grinnell College - Bachelor in Arts, Biology, General

Graduate Degree: University of Iowa - Master of Science, Biology, General

Test Scores

GRE: 1400

GRE Quantitative: 770

GRE Verbal: 630

GRE Analytical Writing: 800

Hobbies

Coordinator for the North Texas Native Landscape Association (taught workshops and created the curriculum); won a statewide award based on her work

Tutoring Subjects


Q & A

What is your teaching philosophy?

I like to explain concepts by taking them apart into small parts that can be easily understood. I enjoy recombining these parts to help students think critically about complicated problems.

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

First, I would spend some time getting to know the student. Then, I get some idea of the work they have done in the course. Then, I assess their level of understanding of the coursework so far, so that we can move on to the current day's assignment.

How can you help a student become an independent learner?

Teach them good study skills and teach them how to look at concepts in a systematic way.

How would you help a student stay motivated?

Help them feel successful by making sure to ask some questions they can answer. Challenge them. Reward them. Make it fun!

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

Try a different approach. Give examples. Apply the concept to a real-life situation to make it more real. Go over the foundational concepts to make sure those are well understood.

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

Make sure the vocabulary is understood. Help the student to find ways to read actively.

What strategies have you found to be most successful when you start to work with a student?

Connecting with the student on a personal level to make him/her feel special. Understand the student's current level.

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

Find a way to apply it to something they are interested in. Help them be successful at the subject.

What techniques would you use to be sure that a student understands the material?

Ask questions. Let them teach it to me or a peer. Give them a written assessment. Play a game.

How do you build a student's confidence in a subject?

Locate the sources of confusion and difficulty, and help the student understand them. Show the student that they can do the work.

How do you evaluate a student's needs?

Ask questions. Give a written assessment. Ask their parent.

How do you adapt your tutoring to the student's needs?

Try out different methods of teaching and see what is most successful. Everyone learns differently.

What types of materials do you typically use during a tutoring session?

Books, games, objects, paper.