A photo of Heather, a tutor from Lindenwood University

Heather

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I have two Masters Degrees in Education with Special Reading from Lindenwood University and Curriculum and Instruction in English from University of Phoenix. My Bachelors Degree is in English from Lindenwood University. I was a high school and middle school teacher for ten years before moving to the college level. The favorite part of my job was (and still is) working one-on-one with my students. I believe students learn more when education can be tailored just to them and that cannot happen in an overcrowded classroom. I tutor students who wish to improve their reading and writing skills, whether they be advanced students that are looking for an extra challenge or remedial students who need extra help.

Heather’s Qualifications

Education & Certification

Undergraduate Degree: Lindenwood University - Bachelors, English

Graduate Degree: Lindenwood University - Masters, Education with Special Reading

Hobbies

dogs, reading, fantasy genre, walking

Tutoring Subjects

College English

College Essays

Comparative Literature

English

High School English

Literature

Writing


Q & A

What is your teaching philosophy?

I believe in the power of education to change lives. That being said, the education needs to be tailored to the individual's needs and preferred learning style.

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

I would start by asking the student what his or her goals are for our tutoring sessions. What does success look like to him or her?

How can you help a student become an independent learner?

I help students become independent learners by helping them learn about themselves and how they learn best. They need the tools to learn and the knowledge to use them.

How would you help a student stay motivated?

I focus on staying positive and breaking large projects into small parts to keep them from becoming overwhelming. Furthermore, I believe everyone can learn; however, we do not all learn the same way at the same pace with all subjects. That is okay.

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

I use assessments to determine what specific skills the students are struggling with and develop strategies to address those.

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

The most useful strategy to use when I first begin working with a student is simple conversation. I want to get to know my student and what interests him or her.

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

I start with how the particular subject affects his or her life. I also like to choose reading material with subjects that are of interest to the student.

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

I have several different Classroom Assessment Techniques (CATs) that I use. These are quick, five minute assessments that allow the student to show me what he or she has learned. When I am tutoring, I use these CATs verbally.

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

I start with where the student is currently and build on small successes. I make a point to tell the student when he or she has these successes because he or she may not see it. For instance, writing a coherent topic sentence is a success that builds up to writing a coherent paragraph, and so on.

How do you evaluate a student's needs?

I evaluate a student's needs by asking what his or her goals for tutoring are. I also ask about what he or she has done in the past that has worked for him or her or not worked. Through a series of questions, and some trial and error, I am able to determine the student's needs.

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

I pay attention to the student's learning styles and adapt my teaching style accordingly. I also talk to the student and ask what is helpful to him or her. If my current method is helpful, I keep using it. If not, I try something else.

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

The materials I use depend on the student's needs and goals. I have reading selections, graphic organizers, outlines, and writing samples, to name a few.

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

If a student has difficulty learning a skill, then I would change my method until I found one that worked for the student.