I have been teaching at Community colleges since 1998. I graduated with an associates in Dental Hygiene, went on to earn my Bachelors in Life Science and my Doctorate of Chiropractic, have a secondary science educational license in Ohio and I am currently attending classes to earn a Master in Anatomy Instruction. I have tutored at the community college where I teach and I was a Graduate Teaching Assistant at Wright State.
Since I have been in classrooms for almost 20 years, I know that not every student learns the way the teacher teaches. Some students need more time to learn the material or just a different perspective that will open up an idea and make it easier to grasp. I hope to be able to do that for you.
Logan College of Chiropractic - PHD, Chiropractic
Logan College of Chiropractic - Bachelors, Life science
What is your teaching philosophy?
My philosophy of teaching is that we as educators should only be facilitating the learning process, because the real learning must come from the students. Students are in need of guidance regarding where they can go to find the right information, what information is important to know, and how it will apply to their chosen field. As an educator, I don't have to know everything, but I do have to be capable of directing the student along the right path. At the same time, I have to be vigilant and watchful so that they are finding the correct information and understanding what to do with it once they have found it. Active participation with the students in this process is key to a successful experience.
What might you do in a typical first session with a student?
In a first session, I would first get to know the student and how they learn best. I would ask what they are doing that is not working and what they have tried. I would also ask what they do that seems to work best. I also would want to know what they like about their class and what they feel they know about the subject. After I know a little about them, then I would ask what they want help with now.
How can you help a student become an independent learner?
Students become independent learners when they feel confident about themselves. Everyone can be an independent learner; they just need to know how to find the answers and feel confident when they do that it is correct. Being independent is a way of thinking. When student's achieve this, there is no end to what they can achieve.
How would you help a student stay motivated?
Motivation comes from within. It is one of the hardest things about teaching. The bottom line is that you have to find out what motivates someone. Is it just the grade or did they lose a privilege they want to gain back? The second thing is to have a goal and have the student agree to that goal. The goal maybe passing the next test or it could be they want an A. Once they see success, the motivation comes from within.
If a student has difficulty learning a skill or concept, what would you do?
Students who have trouble learning a subject may just need a different approach. In my classroom I look for interesting videos, music clips, graphic organizers, etc., that help to make the information more interesting. Another approach to learning a difficult subject is to have them teach it back to me or someone else. You remember 90% of what you teach, so if a student can get to this level they will have grasped the material.
How do you help students who are struggling with reading comprehension?
Reading comprehension in science is difficult because you have new vocabulary along with new concepts. I think about science courses as a foreign language. To improve comprehension for a student who struggles with reading, I would break down the words and show their meaning. When the vocabulary is easier to understand, then the comprehension will develop. Reading a science textbook can be very difficult, and I think the new vocabulary takes away from the understanding, because a student gets stuck on the new words and misses everything else.