As a Peace Corps volunteer in Costa Rica, I spent two and a half years teaching students of all ages how to get and remain interested in learning. My experience working in an elementary and high school taught me that every student is different and there is no better way to engage a student than to be able to study with them one on one. Finding out their learning styles, and mutually developing an effective learning strategy helps both the student and myself succeed in achieving the goals of the student. I have experience tutoring students from young elementary children to adults with very little knowledge of the subject. I have the personal benefit of going from knowing very little Spanish, to becoming fluent, because I spoke Spanish everyday for two years with people who were native speakers. I know the methods it takes to effectively learn Spanish in a way that will make it a second language rather than just memorizing vocabulary and conjugations. I look forward to working with students of all types and will work hard to achieve the goals set by the student.
Q & A
What strategies have you found to be most successful when you start to work with a student?
Establishing a learning style that fits the student so we are making the most use out of every moment of teaching. It's important to learn how a student learns before I start teaching.
How would you help a student get excited/engaged with a subject that they are struggling in?
Find something they are interested in and apply the subject to their interest. Introducing practical situations to learning helps to engage a student.
How do you build a student's confidence in a subject?
Assure them that there is no reason to be embarrassed about their current knowledge of a subject. We will work hard so they can get over the initial stages of learning and increase confidence.
How do you evaluate a student's needs?
With initial assessments (such a quizzes) or just talking to the student about how they feel about the subject and what problems arise when learning.
What is your teaching philosophy?
Each student is different and therefore should be taught differently depending on their needs and learning styles.
What might you do in a typical first session with a student?
Assess their current knowledge of the subject and get to know them in a way that will maximize our tutoring time through understanding their needs on a personal level and setting goals for the future.
How can you help a student become an independent learner?
By providing resources and tools that will help them stay motivated and practice on their own.
How would you help a student stay motivated?
Understand them on a personal level so we can develop a plan that will help them stay on track and see the benefits of learning the subject.
If a student has difficulty learning a skill or concept, what would you do?
Decide what about the concept is giving them trouble and either find a new way of teaching it, or take an old concept that was successful and modify it to the new challenge.
How do you help students who are struggling with reading comprehension?
Stay patient and keep looking for new methods of comprehension until we find one that works for the student.
What techniques would you use to be sure that a student understands the material?
Short assessments at the end of each lesson or week, and making sure to constantly review previously learned topics to keep the foundational knowledge strong.
How do you adapt your tutoring to the student's needs?
I have experience with all types of students, so I take bits and pieces of what I know from past teaching and combine the tools necessary that will personally benefit the current student.