I am an intelligent, passionate, motivated, and personable tutor. I have over six years in education and just graduated law school. I know my "stuff" and can convey the material and concepts that you want to know, but my greatest asset may be my ability to make it matter to you and not just because "it's on the exam" (always my least favorite response when I asked "why do we have to know this?").
Learning is important and knowledge is important and succeeding academically is important. But the most important thing you should take away from a good education is the ability to think. Think broadly, think critically, and think for yourself. It's a skill I've come to value more and more and we can learn to harness it while we learn all the other "stuff" that you want to know.
Education & Certification
Undergraduate Degree: Georgetown University - Bachelor in Arts, English Literature
Graduate Degree: Temple University Beasley School of Law - Juris Doctor, Law
Cycling, dogs, hiking, reading, attending sporting events, tennis, basketball, movies, music, antique cars, traveling, trying new restaurants, the shore, and more.
Q & A
What is your teaching philosophy?
My teaching philosophy is to relate the material to the student and vice versa. Everything a student has an opportunity to learn has relevance in her life. The challenge is helping the student discover that relevance.
What might you do in a typical first session with a student?
A typical first session would involve getting to know the student and the student's interests, strengths, weaknesses, and academic confidences and insecurities. Then, working on the chosen material to assess where the student is in his or her progress.
How can you help a student become an independent learner?
A student can become an independent learner when that student is able to see progress through independent (but guided) study and commitment. As a good tutor guides the student, eventually a student that works hard will see that the same work can be done on his or her own.
How would you help a student stay motivated?
I would help a student stay motivated by identifying that student's goals early on and continually keeping those goals the focus of the work being done. "Eyes on the prize."
If a student has difficulty learning a skill or concept, what would you do?
If a student had difficulty learning a skill or concept, I would first try to identify exactly what parts of the skill or concept the student did understand and then use that information to reassess my own approach to the issue. Knowing what a student knows goes a long way to informing what they do not know and why. From there, I would work to identify a new approach to the skill or concept that may help the student.
How do you help students who are struggling with reading comprehension?
A student struggling with reading comprehension needs to read. As simple as that sounds, it informs my approach to tutoring. If a student is struggling with reading the materials we're covering in our tutoring sessions, I would reflect on what I've learned about the student so far and the interests that the student has shared with me to identify outside materials that the student can be reading that will interest her and make reading and the material relevant. From reading material of interest, a student and a tutor can begin to identify the skills and concepts that form the basis for strong reading comprehension.
What strategies have you found to be most successful when you start to work with a student?
Making the material personal. Making the material interesting. Helping the student identify goals. Helping the student keep those goals in mind while the work is being done.
How would you help a student get excited/engaged with a subject that they are struggling in?
I would figure out what gets him or her excited and engage in other aspects of life to try to help the student discover a connection.
What techniques would you use to be sure that a student understands the material?
I would use a variety of techniques, ranging from formal and informal assessments to asking the student to "teach" me the material.
How do you build a student's confidence in a subject?
Progress. Every little bit helps, and as a student recognizes that progress, she will be encouraged to achieve more.
How do you evaluate a student's needs?
The easiest way to evaluate a student's needs is to have a conversation with the student, but it may be helpful to have a discussion with a parent, and it's also important to figure out what the student needs through his work.
How do you adapt your tutoring to the student's needs?
Every student learns differently, and so it's up to the tutor to match teaching style to student needs to ensure that the work being done is being retained.
What types of materials do you typically use during a tutoring session?
Books, notepads, pens, pencils, scratch paper, study guides, guided reading questions, quizzes, self-assessments, and anything else that I feel will help the student learn the material.