I believe that everybody enjoys learning. The frustration most people experience in school stems from the fact that the topics are approached in a rigid "one size fits all" manner. I will work with each student to tailor their learning experience to their likes and dislikes. Rather than use boring, generic objects I will use subject matter directly related to the student's interests.
Furthermore, I understand that not everybody learns in the same manner. I excel at auditory learning while many others prefer visual information. I will work with each student in a way that I believe they will be most receptive to. I will help them understand how a word problem relates to a picture or an equation, which is the most vital skill to have in mathematics.
Most importantly, I will help the student have fun. I remember a lot more information from the teachers who made learning fun and exciting than those who had dry lectures. I hope to leave the students eager to learn more.
Northeastern University - Bachelors, Physics
Tufts University - Current Grad Student, Mechanical Engineering
SAT Math: 780
SAT Verbal: 700
SAT Mathematics Level 2: 780
SAT Subject Test in Physics: 760
10th Grade Math
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Elementary School Math
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How do you evaluate a student's needs?
I would ask both the student and guardian, if appropriate, to tell me what they hope to accomplish through tutoring.
What is your teaching philosophy?
I believe all students enjoy learning if the subject material is relatable. I will tailor problems to each individual student’s needs and preferences. For example, if a student likes hockey I would make the objects "pucks and sticks" rather than "apples and oranges".
What might you do in a typical first session with a student?
I will first get a sense of where the student is and where they want to end up. Then, I would talk with the student, and guardian if appropriate, to get an idea of some of their likes and dislikes. Then I will use their preferences to make example problems which they are excited to solve.
How would you help a student stay motivated?
I would remind the student that the people they look up to, such as an athlete or a celebrity, worked really hard to get where they are. I will tell them that every minute they practice brings them closer to mastery and that patience is key.
If a student has difficulty learning a skill or concept, what would you do?
Once again, I will try to relate the subject to the student's interests. Rather than counting apples and oranges they could work with footballs and helmets or baseballs and mitts. This helps the student understand that the foreign-seeming concept is not so different from the topic they enjoy.
How do you help students who are struggling with reading comprehension?
I would have the student break down the sentence into different parts. Then I would have them rephrase each segment into their own words. Then, recombine the segments to create a sentence similar to the original, but in the student's words.
What strategies have you found to be most successful when you start to work with a student?
Be open with them and keep things interesting. One-on-one attention is perfect for creating a learning environment specific to each student.
How would you help a student get excited/engaged with a subject that they are struggling in?
Everybody likes something. I would try to frame questions and responses in terms of things that the student understands.
What techniques would you use to be sure that a student understands the material?
I will ask the students conceptual questions as well as give them example problems to test their understanding.
How do you build a student's confidence in a subject?
Repetition and interesting subject material.
How do you adapt your tutoring to the student's needs?
Once again, I will work with topics the student understands and is excited about. It helps create familiarity as well as remove some of the anxiety that comes with a lack of understanding.
What types of materials do you typically use during a tutoring session?
I have a notebook that will be with me at all times. In there I will have all of the things I have written down for each student. Things like their biographical information, their likes and dislikes, what they know and what they hope to learn.
How can you help a student become an independent learner?
I will remind the student that knowledge is power. More knowledge also means more value to a future employer. I will try to frame learning as a way to better yourself while reminding the student that their idols have spent a lot of time learning.