I love science!! And hopefully by the end of our study sessions I can achieve the same spark in my students! I am an artist on the side of my contracted chemical work and I also dedicate myself to fitness, all with chemistry/biology in mind. Everything around us can be attributed to almost all the same atoms, just arranged in different configurations. Isn't that crazy? Because of this, I see chemistry/biology as part of everything in life! I am dedicated to learning and very much sympathetic to students who struggle with science because I did at one time too and now I'm a chemist by trade! After all, we are all students at one point and therefore getting answers "wrong" isn't an issue, it's an opportunity to do better and learn something new! Whether it be art, biology, chemistry, entry-level science, or college level I am more than ready to tackle courses that seem overwhelming by taking them apart one concept at a time. Using some fun analogies, videos, and many relatable visual aids, I feel fully prepared to not come off as a lecturer. Instead I am more of an interactive teacher to show each one of my students specialized attention in each of their needs and confusions about their courses. Lets get some cool learning done!
Bowling Green State University-Main Campus - Bachelors, Biochemistry and Art
What is your teaching philosophy?
Education is KEY to a healthy, happy future. The more you learn, the less life's turns will feel like surprises.
What might you do in a typical first session with a student?
Ask what their scholastic and hobby-like interests are. That way I can match a batter learning approach using references from what they already really care about.
How can you help a student become an independent learner?
I can help a student become an independent learner by instilling the concept that even the brightest minds struggled at some point with basic concepts. What made them great is not giving up.
How would you help a student stay motivated?
Motivation is rooted in self-confidence. Reassuring that there is absolutely nothing wrong with an incorrect answer is the start. To view a red mark as an opportunity to challenge yourself to try again builds self-confidence and therefore motivation to try again without hesitation.
If a student has difficulty learning a skill or concept, what would you do?
I would reassure any student that EVERY student has trouble at some point. It isn't themselves lacking; some subjects are just tricky. However, after they have given their best effort, the feeling of finally understanding a concept they once felt lost in is more than gratifying!
What strategies have you found to be most successful when you start to work with a student?
A strategy I have teaching anyone, not just students- about a concept they have trouble with- is to first take careful note of what exactly they DO understand. Only then can we take steps to tackle and work towards what they don't understand.
How do you help students who are struggling with reading comprehension?
First and foremost, identifying what a student does understand vs. what they don't is crucial. After I observe and note those concepts, and open communication is established as welcome from them (including their frustrations), then I can begin to help. Using metacognition (thinking about thinking) and other reading comprehension strategies, we can begin to take small steps that begin to feel second nature to the student after some practice. From there small steps will become bigger with more practice! Also, bringing in magazines or other contemporary sources of interest to the student might spark their understanding to help them read quicker while also comprehending the information being read.
How would you help a student get excited/engaged with a subject that they are struggling in?
We all have our areas of interests. I would simply ask the student what they really love and care for. From there I guarantee I will find a way to link their unique interests to the subject they don't care for. Especially with science, that is related to everything around us. For example: say a student loves sports, but does not really care for organic chemistry. Using knowledge of organic chemistry in their fitness routines or practices could even make them a better athlete and get them to start thinking about the world around them in a different way.
What techniques would you use to be sure that a student understands the material?
Even the toughest subjects can be mastered with time and practice. I would be sure that a student is understanding material by ending each session with a series of practice problem sets. Some that I assist with until I feel they are comfortable enough to do similar ones on their own. This also boosts self-confidence and enthusiasm in a student when they are correctly answering problems they once had no clue how to even begin!
How do you build a student's confidence in a subject?
I build anyone’s confidence by being a super positive reinforcer and never chastising an incorrect answer. There are clues in every red mark as to why they believed it was the correct answer in the first place. No biggie; let's try it again, and this time step by step!
How do you evaluate a student's needs?
I would like to establish on the first session as well as quickly in the beginning of each session what the student feels most frustrated with and why. Coming from a teaching point of view, one can take in those frustrations and analyze what is the root cause of them. All it takes is a little patience and listening!
How do you adapt your tutoring to the student's needs?
Every student is unique and keeping that in mind is key! I would prefer to help one student per day to focus on their specific likes, dislikes, interests, and struggles. According to who they are as a person, not just a student, that determines the path leading to their unique success!
What types of materials do you typically use during a tutoring session?
I typically would like to use visual aids that bring the learning outside of the page, i.e. molecular modeling kits, Play-Doh, videos. Sometimes even physical activities such as outstretching hands as symbols of chemical bonds can help students too! I am a chemist and an artist, so therefore my teaching is super visual and 3D to model what exactly is going on in the molecular world around us.