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My passion is to assist students in becoming self-directed, enthusiastic learners. I have a bachelor's degree from the University of Hawaii Manoa in both English and Biology, as well as a master's degree in Education from Chaminade University. I have been tutoring and teaching early elementary to senior's high school students for over a decade.

Some of the subjects that I am qualified to tutor are: reading, writing, grammar, algebra 1 to geometry, biology, SSAT, ISEE, and SAT. My favorite subjects to tutor are grammar because proper grammar is critical to essay construction and formal communication Both of which are essential in the professional world.

I am an outgoing, energetic and driven teacher. I love to see students succeed in academia. Some of my hobbies include surfing, hiking, basketball, and fatherhood.

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Darren’s Qualifications

Education & Certification

Undergraduate Degree: University of Hawaii at Manoa - Bachelors, English and Biology

Graduate Degree: Chaminade University of Honolulu - Masters, Education


Surfing, Basketball and playing Guitar

Q & A

What is your teaching philosophy?

My goal is to contribute to a student's ability to become a self directed lifelong learner by providing tools and insights to subject learning.

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

Determine what the student is struggling with and what the student is doing well by asking them a few questions.

How can you help a student become an independent learner?

I can help a student become an independent learner by providing tools and techniques in completing subject-based work.

How would you help a student stay motivated?

I would help a student stay motivated by celebrating their "successes" during the tutoring session. Encouragement is a great motivator.

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

I would try to approach teaching the problem or question from another angle.

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

I would ask comprehension questions about character, plot and action every paragraph. This will gauge understanding of the material and help the student reinforce their understanding, or correct misunderstanding.

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

I have found that when I address the student with respect and patience, this encourages the student to succeed. When I first work with a student, I try to determine their strengths and weaknesses, and also their enjoyment level of the subject. This will help us make goals for the session.

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

I would try to find something interesting in the subject matter to relate to the student. For example, if the student loves football, I would approach certain math problems using football statistics.

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

In order for me to be sure a student understands the material, I have the student repeat the answer to the problem or the technique I just showed them in completing the problem. I have found that, through repetition and having the student hear themselves give the answers back, this reengages their understanding.

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

I would pick out "small victories" specifically, and encourage the student's progress. Sometimes the student fails to see that they are indeed improving and learning. It is my goal to make sure they stop to realize they are progressing.

How do you evaluate a student's needs?

If a student continually struggles with the same or similar challenges, this is an indicator that I should slow down and reiterate some of the teaching points. Asking the student pertinent questions and having them repeat some the teaching points also aids in evaluation.

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

Sometimes a student is more a visual learner than an auditory one or vice versa. Using the whiteboard to create learning webs and diagrams for a visual learner helps in comprehension. For auditory learners, repetition and auditory examples help the student to make connections to new information.

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

Workbooks, textbooks, and online dictionaries all help in the session. Reference books are great sources of information as well.

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