I have received my training in Physics and Mathematics from The Evergreen State College, where it was complimented with a small variety of poetry studies. I tutor as specialties Physics, Mathematics, reading, writing and its mechanics for various purposes and media, and general test prep. My interest is equally in in passing along skills and knowledge to be an independent scholar, and revealing the beauty within my subjects. I tutor because I enjoy intellectual exchange with other people, and I’m passionate about helping others acquire their learning because it beautifies the world and knowledgeable individuals can better society .
I’ve tutored college level writing one-on-one for 3 years, and I have experience tutoring elementary school mathematics and writing; aside this I frequently assist students with writing, introductory Physics, and lower division Mathematics in less formal settings. My teaching philosophy aims to illustrate the manner in which a subject exalts beauty in the world, through both abstract pleasure as well as practical utility. I try to bring the subject to your interests, rather than your interest to the subject: I try to bring it alive for the individual I’m dealing with in specific. Assuaging worry and nervousness is definitely important: stuff is hard and its ok!
Beyond academics, I actually enjoy going through textbooks and teaching myself new subjects, especially in astronomy, astrophysics, and cosmology. I enjoy trying new restaurants. I like dressing fashionably. I’m a lifelong gamer and I still try to find time to play, either online or good single-players. I’ve been drawing since I was 3, and I also do animation; I write poetry; I’m learning to skate; and lately I’m working on watching cinema. My absolute favorite thing is naked eye or telescopic stargazing, and I'm currently building my own telescope. I also genuinely like teaching, so... let's learn some things!
Education & Certification
Undergraduate Degree: The Evergreen State College - Current Undergrad, Physics
SAT Subject Test in Spanish: 730
High School English
Study Skills and Organization
Q & A
What might you do in a typical first session with a student?
In a typical first session with a student, I would hurry through introductions and get to know my student, and let them get to know me just a little bit more personally so we find common ground and feel more comfortable, and more friendly and collaborative in the learning process; simple things like spare time fun and deep questions we each ask. Then I'd start asking my student to characterize the sort of trouble they're having, and how they feel about their studies and what they think about their learning material; finally, I'd have them show me a problem they like or very much don't like and dive right into it from there.
If a student has difficulty learning a skill or concept, what would you do?
If a student has difficulty learning a concept, the teaching approach must clearly change, and there are a variety of strategies I would deploy as follows. Returning to the book: what does the book say? How is the thing defined in the book; can we break that down word for word? Examples: Can we find a useful example in the book? Can we identify where a concept is being applied in a demonstrated problem in the book? The same method would hold for learning to apply a skill. Is there a useful graphic that illustrates the idea? Can we make our own? Reinforcement: Has my student actually successfully applied the concept or skill before; are they at their limits with a similar but more challenging problem? I would praise and reward them for their earlier triumph and break down the problem solving process to pinpoint the location of their successful learning; then help them push toward success. Is there a similar, but less difficult problem that is assigned that we may attempt? Returning to the classroom: did they take notes of something that might've been useful on the board? Did their teacher give them a useful handout? Improvising: Share with me what you understand. What makes sense and what doesn't; what's confusing about it; do we understand all the words? Where are you getting lost; at what word do you stop understanding; what calculation do you lose track at? Can we draw a useful picture or diagram? If everything is failing: Maybe we just need to take a break, get some stretching in, get some water or coffee or tea, have a snack, talk about something else for a second. Maybe it'll click, or maybe doing something kinesthetic will help our brain. Maybe we can find another resource that's very useful for this particular student. At the end of it all, everyone is different, and I would be co-developing a student's success alongside them, and that includes finding what makes learning most facile.
How would you help a student get excited/engaged with a subject that they are struggling in?
I would help a student get excited and engaged with a subject they are struggling in by probing them about why they find it boring, then instead talking about some things that interest them or things they'd like to do or experience later in life. Then, we'd come full circle and relate their interests directly to some of the tools and skills that come out of their learning material. For older, advanced, or precocious students, I would try to show them some of the neat things that the subject reveals at higher levels or deeper studies, or where in the real world really fundamental and rudimentary concepts and skills applied.