A photo of Katie, a tutor from Ithaca College

Katie

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I was motivated to become a tutor because I wanted a job doing the things that I love: learning new topics and helping others. My goal is to not only have students successfully learn information, but additionally, I want them to feel confident about their work.

I have been a tutor for four years now. I began tutoring middle school math my freshman year of high school, and later I tutored Regents Earth Science through National Honors Society in my senior year. I am now a freshman at Ithaca College, majoring in Biology, minoring in Anthropology, and pursuing a career in medicine. Apart from education, I am also interested in art and music, and I participate in club soccer and varsity crew at Ithaca College.

As a Varsity Tutor, I hope to show my students how enjoyable learning really is. I hope that you will learn from me, as I know I’ll continue to learn from you!

Katie’s Qualifications

Education & Certification

Undergraduate Degree: Ithaca College - Bachelors, Biology, General

Test Scores

ACT English: 32

ACT Math: 34

ACT Science: 31

SAT Math: 710

AP Biology: 4

AP Chemistry: 4

AP Calculus AB: 5

AP Calculus BC: 5

AP US History: 4

Hobbies

Art, Music (piano and voice), soccer, crew


Q & A

What is your teaching philosophy?

I believe I can achieve success through thorough explanation, visual examples, and creative ways of remembering tough information. I tend to avoid lecture style teaching in an attempt to maintain student interest.

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

Prior to a first session, I will ask the student what topics they are currently learning in class in a subject, so that I may come adequately prepared to the first session. At the first session I make sure to familiarize myself with the students study habits, note taking abilities, and class materials. I think for this reason, it is best if the first session is a little longer than normal sessions will be, so that material can still be covered.

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

If one of my students is stuck on a particular detail, I like to take a step back and give general context. After this, I will explain it in a way different from how they learned in class, and usually with a comparison to a real life scenario (although this doesn't work for every concept).

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

I like to remind students who are struggling with reading comprehension that all the answers they need are right in the paragraph. Specifically in math and science it is most important to pay attention to general trends and outcomes, rather than specific numbers. Before looking at the answer, students should read the question and come up with their own answer, and then look for a similar answer from the choices.

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

I find that when beginning work with a student I like to go over any prior exams, in order to gather what the student already knows. This also gives insight to any possible issues with test taking strategies, depending on if the errors where content related or not.

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

I feel that when a topic is related into real life examples, it gives the student a way to apply the information they are learning to their everyday life.

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

I prefer to use diagnostic and formative assessment. I want to first see how much a student already knows about the next subtopic, and then I consistently ask questions on how the material is being understood. I like to make sure the basics are covered before branching out to more complicated material.

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

I believe that it important to constantly encourage students. I do not simply answer questions, but I instead give them hints so that they can figure out the answer to their question. With every accomplishment, the student's confidence in the material will grow.

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

I always refer to the student's class materials. I also bring my own notes on the subject as a reference, which can also serve as another way of teaching certain material the student may struggle with.

How can you help a student become an independent learner?

I hope to give the students a set of tools that they can use when on their own, whether it be specifically on the material or to simply study habits and ways of learning information.