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Alison

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I love tutoring! My goal is to make learning fun, and to adapt my teaching style to fit the needs of my students. I enjoy the challenge of breaking down difficult concepts into digestible pieces, and nothing makes me happier than witnessing an "a-ha!" moment. In 2010, I graduated Summa Cum Laude with my Bachelor of Arts in Mathematics and Gender and Women???s Studies, so I understand the importance of promoting mathematical literacy in groups who are traditionally underrepresented in the STEM fields. Through my roles as a teaching assistant and peer mathematics tutor, elementary ESL teacher in France, AmeriCorps Service Learning and Mentoring Specialist, and community college tutor, I have followed my passion for helping others develop skills and confidence in all areas of the subject. Having worked with students ranging from elementary school to college, I am equally comfortable teaching multiplication tables and long division as I am reinforcing concepts in algebra, trigonometry, geometry, and calculus.

Alison’s Qualifications

Education & Certification

Undergraduate Degree: SUNY Plattsburgh - Bachelors, Mathematics (with French minor)

Test Scores

LSAT: 164

GRE Quantitative: 164

Hobbies

Music, Cooking, Traveling, Running, Board Games, Reading, Contra Dancing

Tutoring Subjects

Algebra

Algebra 2

Algebra 3/4

Applied Mathematics

Calculus

College Algebra

Elementary School Math

French 1

GED Prep

GED Math

Geometry

Graduate Test Prep

GRE

GRE Analytical Writing

GRE Quantitative

GRE Verbal

Homework Support

LSAT

LSAT Analytical Reasoning

LSAT Essay Section

LSAT Logical Reasoning

LSAT Reading Comprehension

Other

Pre-Algebra

Pre-Calculus

Quantitative Reasoning

Study Skills

Study Skills and Organization

Summer

Test Prep


Q & A

What is your teaching philosophy?

I believe every student can succeed, given the right tools and motivation. My job is to figure out how to communicate in a way that works for different learning styles because we all really do learn differently!

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

I would get to know the student and establish a connection before diving right into the subject. Then, I would ask them about their goals for the session and create a tentative schedule of work based off of their needs.

How can you help a student become an independent learner?

I can suggest resources (books, websites, games, etc.) that the student can use during their time outside of tutoring sessions, as well as help establish good study skills and test prep habits.

How would you help a student stay motivated?

I would pay attention to the student's needs and know when to take a break if the student is getting burned out. I'm a firm believer in positive reinforcement, so I would start with work the student feels more confident about before moving onto more complicated subjects.

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

I would ask the student to re-explain the concept in their own words so I could hear how they interpret the information. I would then try to break the concept down into smaller, more digestible pieces so that the student doesn't feel overwhelmed.

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

I would have the student read the piece once through. Then, I would ask them to read the questions related to the piece so they can be watchful for the information they need to know, and go back and re-read the article.

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

Connecting on a personal level is very important to establishing a successful tutoring relationship. My job is to make tutoring as fun as it can be, so that the subject isn't as much of a struggle.

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

Depending on the subject and the student's age / ability level, I would employ games or visual aids to help them learn the material in a different, more exciting way. I would also be sure to emphasize the real-world applications of the material.

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

I would throw out a few practice questions at the end of the session and ask the student to explain the concepts we had covered as if they were trying to teach it to someone else.

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

I start small: I break a concept into smaller, fundamental pieces and ask questions at every step of the way so that a student masters the "building blocks" of a subject before putting them all together.

How do you evaluate a student's needs?

I ask a student what they think their biggest struggles are in a subject. If they're not sure, or they say "everything," then I might ask to look at past homework assignments or tests to see where they are having the most difficulty.

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

If a student is a more visual learner, I will draw pictures to explain a concept. If they prefer games, I will find a game related to the subject. If they like to do lots of practice questions, I will prepare a list of questions for them to complete during the session.

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

For math tutoring, I generally use a piece of paper and pencil. Sometimes a calculator is involved, or a whiteboard, or games/manipulatives (depending on the subject). For test preparation, I bring practice questions.