Hello future learners! My name is Brett Macy and I hope to help you achieve your educational goals in a fun, informative and timely manner. I graduated from college in 2005 with a degree in Physics and a minor in Biology with a Pre-Medicine focus from Florida State University. After receiving my BS, I attended graduate school at FSU in the Molecular Biology program for 2 years where I taught several undergraduate courses before I left the program to take a business opportunity in retail management. I spent the next 6 years working at different levels of management before deciding to shift my career focus back to my first love: teaching. While working in the world of business, I was able to train many new people and develop my teaching style and philosophy beyond what I began to in college. I like to take what people are trying to learn and broaden the scope to a more general framework that can be applied beyond what is specifically being tested so that my students can see more inherent value in the subject matter. This tends to foster greater interest and retention over time. I look forward to the opportunity to help any student who is looking for a leg-up in their educational endeavors!
Education & Certification
Undergraduate Degree: Florida State University - Bachelors, Physics
I enjoy reading, painting, cooking, application design and coding and many outdoor activities
Q & A
What is your teaching philosophy?
I believe that learning needs to be tailored to the individual student. This means that learning should be fun, engaging and delivered in a way that will foster an understanding of why the subject is important in a real world environment.
What might you do in a typical first session with a student?
First we would have a brief introduction and learn a little about what makes each other tick. We would then discuss what they felt their opportunities were, and why they feel they are not being as successful as possible in their current classroom environment. We would try to outline what styles of learning they respond best to, and develop a lesson plan to achieve their specific learning goals, and how we could benchmark and motivate success in these areas.
How can you help a student become an independent learner?
By teaching them new strategies to approach subject matter that would make the subject easier to understand and how to engage themselves in the learning process.
How would you help a student stay motivated?
Benchmark rewards are important to keep students motivated. This can include things as simple as tangible items that represent completion of goals, to making each goal achieved a celebration of the student in a way that speaks to their individual traits. It also includes positive results in their grades on tests, homework assignments and other traditional methods of benchmarking.
If a student has difficulty learning a skill or concept, what would you do?
I like to attack problems from multiple angles, which allows for more chances for the student to find an approach that works best for them conceptually. This can mean finding non-traditional ways to get through to a student that may not be employed in their school learning environment.
How do you help students who are struggling with reading comprehension?
For many learners, reading can be a true roadblock to success. Often times, concepts can be taught verbally, through modelling, or kinesthetic-tactual means so students who find reading a challenge have other ways to view a subject.
What strategies have you found to be most successful when you start to work with a student?
Listening to a student is just as important as what you say to them, and often more so. This can include both verbal and non-verbal cues. Understanding what the student feels are their largest areas of opportunity can go a long way towards ensuring long-term success in achieving their learning goals.
How would you help a student get excited/engaged with a subject that they are struggling in?
Connecting a student to what is relevant to the real world can often spark more interest than what is dryly laid out in a textbook. Being able to identify why this specific knowledge is important in a tangible way can open the door to greater engagement.
What techniques would you use to be sure that a student understands the material?
Through self-tests, review of covered materials, and "pop" quizzes, I like to check in with students to ensure retention throughout a session. If they can teach a concept back to me, then I know they have a good handle on the situation.
How do you evaluate a student's needs?
By engaging in an interactive process with the student: asking questions, listening to their responses and requesting input from multiple sources including resources such as parents and fellow teachers.
How do you adapt your tutoring to the student's needs?
Soliciting feedback from a student is key for adapting your teaching style. If a particular method isn't working, it is my job as an educator to try to identify that by checking in often with the student to determine if the teaching style or method is resonating with them. This allows for mid-course corrections that can improve the success of an individual session and long-term success.
What types of materials do you typically use during a tutoring session?
I like to use as many resources as there are available in the learning environment. This would typically include textbooks, study guides, visual aids, and multimedia such as videos, Flash animations and slideshows.