Hi, I'm Kent! I am a native of Southern California, and an alumnus of North High School in Torrance. For my undergraduate studies I attended UC Berkeley, where I graduated with a B.S. in Molecular Environmental Biology. I'm currently working as an optician at an optometry office in my hometown, and will be applying to optometry school this upcoming summer.
My hobbies include watching TV and movies (probably a little too much), hiking, and baseball. My favorite movies are The Social Network, Toy Story, and Guardians of the Galaxy. My favorite TV shows are Parks and Recreation, Scrubs, and Breaking Bad. Currently, I am binge-watching Mad Men in between work and studying.
I wanted to be a tutor because of my own struggles with academics. My parents are immigrants and don't speak a lot of English, so by the time I was in high school, I was pretty independent with regards to my schoolwork. I couldn't have made it through my formative school years without the help of my own tutors. I understand from first hand experience how important it is to have a educational support group to succeed in school. It's very rewarding to see how much of a difference you can make in a student's life by giving them a few nudges in the right direction!
Education & Certification
Undergraduate Degree: University of California-Berkeley - Bachelors, Molecular Enviornmnetal Biology
SAT Math: 800
SAT Writing: 670
SAT Mathematics Level 2: 740
OAT Quantitative Reasoning: 380
OAT Physics: 360
OAT Survey of Natural Sciences: 400
TV/movies, martial arts (kendo), baseball, hiking
High School Biology
High School Chemistry
High School English
High School Physics
OAT Quantitative Reasoning
OAT Survey of Natural Sciences
SAT Subject Tests Prep
Q & A
What is your teaching philosophy?
I want to help students help themselves.
What might you do in a typical first session with a student?
I'd like to learn more about your interests, hobbies, and favorite school subjects, even if it's not necessarily the one we're focusing on. That way I'm able to create examples that are interesting to the student.
How can you help a student become an independent learner?
I keep my cool and stay patient!
How would you help a student stay motivated?
I make sure that they realize their achievements throughout the tutoring process. Progress is progress, even if it's happening slowly!
If a student has difficulty learning a skill or concept, what would you do?
I change up the way that I present the material. Students may not be able to fully comprehend a large block of text, but a model or picture may be something the can understand perfectly. The most helpful tutors / teachers that I had didn't simply repeat information until I understood. They changed their approach until they found one that fit for my own learning style.
What strategies have you found to be most successful when you start to work with a student?
Go over old problem sets, tests, or quizzes that they didn't do so well on. Oftentimes, earlier concepts are building blocks for later material, and not having a full understanding of those foundations results in trouble later on.
What techniques would you use to be sure that a student understands the material?
Swap roles and have them explain it to me. The best way to test a student's mastery in a subject is to have them teach it to someone else.