Hi there, I'm Kaitlin! I recently graduated from the University of Oregon with a Bachelor's of Science in Human Physiology and a minor in Spanish. I am taking a break in my schooling to save money for graduate school and decide what I want my career to be. Currently I am toying with the idea of going back to school and getting a Master's in Human Physiology and then going on to get my PhD and then become a professor at a University, OR working in the medical field for a while and then applying for Physician Assistant school. Whatever path I take, you can bet that it will involve more school and more science!
I decided to apply to become a tutor because I really do love education. I know that having a warm, compassionate person to help you with difficult subjects can make or break your grade and your school experience. As a tutor, it is my goal to help make your problem subjects a little less daunting and help you succeed. I want to create an individualized plan for YOU that will play to your strengths and tackle your weaknesses. Your education is very personal, so it is only just that your learning plan be individualized as well! Whether you are having a hard time with a subject, or you are struggling to manage your time between school, homework, and after-school activities, I am here to help with all.
I hope that I can help you meet your educational goals soon!
Education & Certification
Undergraduate Degree: University of Oregon - Bachelor of Science, Human Physiology, Minor in Spanish
Reading, writing, watching sports (Go Ducks!), hiking, nature adventures, camping, sitting by the fire, netflix binging, sailing, AND MORE!
Anatomy & Physiology
High School English
IB Language B
IB Language B SL
Study Skills and Organization
What is your teaching philosophy?
I want to find the best teaching method for every student to succeed. Education is very personal, and I believe that your education plan should play to your strengths and help you tackle your weaknesses in the best way possible.
What might you do in a typical first session with a student?
I would get to know the student. I would want to find out their academic background, of course. But I also want to know who they are as a person, so that I can help them in the way that fits their personality and learning style best. After introductions, I might attempt to tackle some academic struggles the student might be having.
How can you help a student become an independent learner?
I want to give them the organizational and study skills, so that one day they can learn on their own. I hope to do this by individualizing the study plan so that each student can find what will be feasible for them to continue on their own in the long run.
How would you help a student stay motivated?
School is frustrating sometimes! I will always make sure I am encouraging, of course. And I might offer anecdotes of my own to help the student understand that their struggles are not singular, and that I understand how hard school is sometimes. Hopefully this mutual understanding will help the students realize that they are very close to a breakthrough, and that they will understand their material very soon!
If a student has difficulty learning a skill or concept, what would you do?
First, I would identify what way each student learns best, whether that's by making diagrams, writing the material out in essay form, or dictating. Then, I would have the student walk me through what about the concept they understand, and what they don't. Whatever gaps they need filled, I would fill by either drawing, dictating, or writing it out, depending on what the student likes best. Then, I would have the student try and dictate back the skill or concept in his/her own words.
How do you help students who are struggling with reading comprehension?
Each student has their own area of knowledge and their own area of skills that need to be worked on. I would first try and identify what they know and what they are struggling with. Then I would try and explain what is lacking in understanding as best I could, and see if the student could repeat it back in his/her own words. I would try and give fresh, new examples to establish patterns, as well as give tips on how to establish patterns in the future.
What strategies have you found to be most successful when you start to work with a student?
(1) Establish a relationship where the student feels comfortable with me as well as comfortable with the prospect of making a mistake. (2) Ask them about school. What classes do they like, dislike, and why? This can give clues as to what kind of learner they are. (3) Ask them more about the class(es) they are struggling with. Is it a particular chapter of material? What is confusing about it? (4) Take a look at an example where the comprehension is lacking, and try and have the student explain what they know about it. (5) Try and fill the knowledge gaps with analogies, examples, drawings, charts, or whatever else is pertinent. (6) Have the student try and explain what I just said back to me, and encourage questions! (7) Repeat steps 4,5,6 as needed.
How would you help a student get excited/engaged with a subject that they are struggling in?
As with everything, it depends on what kind of student they are. Some people will respond to different motivational speeches better than others. My goal would to be to find what motivates that particular student. Maybe it's the desire to work hard, or maybe they are working towards a goal or it is a prerequisite for a different class that they want. Whatever the motivation is, I will remind the student of that, and try and use that to get the student excited, or at least engaged, with their subject.
What techniques would you use to be sure that a student understands the material?
I think the most effective way to make sure a student understands something is having them teach someone else. It is one thing to know information in your brain, but it takes an additional layer of processing and output to be able to organize and speak about a subject. I will definitely utilize this teaching method once the student seems to be understanding the material.
How do you build a student's confidence in a subject?
It depends on the age of the student. Younger students might respond well to physical rewards like stickers to mark their progress, while older students might respond better to doing better each time on a series of flashcards related to the subject. I definitely want to incorporate some physical way to show each student that they are making progress every day towards their goal of understanding the material. I think having a physical marker of this progress is something that people like to see. It's easier for our brains to visualize if there is an actual visual component to the progress.
How do you evaluate a student's needs?
I think this one is pretty obvious, but it might not be to some people. Talk to your student. Ask them what they have a hard time with, and if they say something like "reading," then ask them what specifically is it about the reading that is difficult. That way you can narrow down the problem areas much more efficiently. After each session, ask the student what they still want to work on, and what they are feeling better about. That way, with each session there is a process, and there is a place to go for improvement.
How do you adapt your tutoring to the student's needs?
This definitely goes with the last question, but again, having an open and constant dialogue with the student will be incredibly helpful with this. Maybe the student says that they understood something, and they got their test scores back and it was actually not understood. Then, the problem might need to be addressed in a different way. It's all about small adjustments, and being willing to constantly make adjustments and re-evaluate the process of learning.
What types of materials do you typically use during a tutoring session?
For tutoring, I typically would use my computer for quick reference to questions. Particularly related to small details that may have been forgotten in the recesses of my brain. I like to use the student's textbooks for reference as well, since that is where a good majority of teacher's test questions usually find their origin. And I like to use lots and lots of paper. I like to draw charts and pictures because visual information is helpful for me as a tutor, and it is often very helpful to the students as well.