I graduated from Northeastern State University in Oklahoma with a degree in special needs education, I am working on my masters in autism as well. I have been a in education, both teaching in public schools and tutoring for over 30 years! I enjoy teaching about the things I love, such as Spanish, all elementary subjects, writing and reading. I think my favorite subjects are anything to do with languages, such as Spanish, English and writing. My enthusiasm is contagious! I am excited about what I teach, what I learn, as well as biking, hiking, swimming, scuba diving and travel. When I'm not inspiring my students, I volunteer as a minister, I teach (even for fun, that's how much I love teaching) I travel and lead group hikes and tours throughout the United States. I know you'll enjoy working with me. I am patient and friendly. I am usually calm and sometimes silly. I craft enjoyable, engrossing lessons where you walk way thinking "wow! I learned something new, had fun and my brain is tired!."
Education & Certification
Undergraduate Degree: Northeastern State University - Bachelors, Special Needs Education
Graduate Degree: Northeastern State University - Current Grad Student, Autism Education
Biking, Reading, Hiking, Swimming
Q & A
What is your teaching philosophy?
I believe that a person learns by building on what they already know. My job is to help you unlock your own potential.
What might you do in a typical first session with a student?
I would get to know the student and find out their interests, strengths and areas for growth. Once I know these things, I can build a customized lesson based on their interests and strengths that will help them grow.
How can you help a student become an independent learner?
I equip a student with strategies that help a student learn everywhere. Knowledge is everywhere! Learning how to learn is the greatest skill a person can develop; that's what I do!
How would you help a student stay motivated?
I would discover what is most interesting to a student first, then I can motivate by helping the student see how the information benefits them personally.
If a student has difficulty learning a skill or concept, what would you do?
I would explain it differently. I would illustrate it. I would explain it again. I would be continually checking for understanding and adjusting as needed.
How do you help students who are struggling with reading comprehension?
I have them read slowly, out loud or quietly to themselves. Then I ask questions that guide them to the key words that might be of help. If there are pictures, we'll use those as well. If needed, we'd draw and use graphic organizers to help build understanding.
What strategies have you found to be most successful when you start to work with a student?
Interest, interest, interest, and build a rapport. If you know what is interesting to a student and have a rapport, you can be successful, because the student is interested in the material and open to you as the teacher; progress will happen.
How would you help a student get excited/engaged with a subject that they are struggling in?
Make it personally applicable to them. That may mean that I do extra work to make it important. It could mean a game or activity. It could mean an exercise.
What techniques would you use to be sure that a student understands the material?
Continuous checking for understanding is crucial. If a student doesn't understand the first thing you say, go back and find the spot where understanding is weak and build from there. Ask questions, probe and modify when needed.
How do you build a student's confidence in a subject?
Praise and practice. Praise for any portion of correct performance. Practice what was done well until it becomes automatic, and then move on to the new information until the task is mastered.
How do you evaluate a student's needs?
Asking the student, first of all. Interest inventories, informal and formal assessments.
How do you adapt your tutoring to the student's needs?
Check for understanding and be vigilant for waning interest. If a student isn't learning how you're teaching, teach how the student learns.
What types of materials do you typically use during a tutoring session?
Books, Magazines, Videos, Dice, Cards, Beans (really), Rubber Bands, anything that will help.