I am a working professional in hospitality and real estate with several years of work experience in Spanish speaking countries (Mexico & the Dominican Republic). I received a Bachelor of Science in Evolutionary Anthropology and a Master's in Marketing & Hospitality. I'm a language and science nerd; in addition to Spanish, I am conversational in Brazilian Portuguese and am currently studying several other languages on my own (Italian, French, German, Chinese, Japanese).
Education & Certification
Undergraduate Degree: Rutgers University-New Brunswick - Bachelors, Evolutionary Anthropology
Graduate Degree: Cornell University - Masters, Marketing & Hospitality Management
Languages, dance, hike, swimming, photography, movies, TV.
What is your teaching philosophy?
It's important to approach teaching from the interests of the learner (especially for foreign languages). If you love dancing, cooking, or movies, I'd rather work on getting you up to speed in conversations on those topics rather than politics, sports, or something else unrelated.
What might you do in a typical first session with a student?
It's important for us to get to know each other and for me to understand your problem areas (according to you), and also what is your motivation for learning. Is it for a required class or for your own personal interest?
How can you help a student become an independent learner?
It's important to focus on making the subject important to you, to have an end goal in mind, and to be able to set milestone markers along the way to achieving your big goal.
How would you help a student stay motivated?
Focus on the positive! Work on accelerating where a student has a natural ability, and then focus on weaker areas (only considering that not having a certain working knowledge would hinder future performance).
If a student has difficulty learning a skill or concept, what would you do?
Creative analogies and storytelling works wonders, coupled with real world examples of what to do. Focus more on application and less on theory.
What strategies have you found to be most successful when you start to work with a student?
Be approachable and encourage any and all questions.
How would you help a student get excited/engaged with a subject that they are struggling in?
If it's a subject that I'm familiar with, I show them the light at the end of the tunnel. NOBODY likes the groundwork of any subject. We all want to be experts in any given topic or ability, but we don't always see the amount of work that goes into achieving that end goal.
What techniques would you use to be sure that a student understands the material?
I think that if a student can repeat back to me a concept in his or her own words, and give me examples (teach the teacher), then they have truly learned something.
How do you build a student's confidence in a subject?