Experience teaching at the High School & College level, with focus on SAT Prep and writing skills. Graduated from University of Florida with a Bachelor's in History, and a minor in Asian Studies. I lived abroad in Xi'an, China, teaching sophomore college students English for 6 months. I have tutored in SAT Prep, as a volunteer through NYCCares, providing expensive test prep to low-income students. I have volunteered with 826NYC, helping run creative writing workshops with elementary school students and providing homework help.
I am currently a freelance writer and comedian in NYC. I have high energy and am very enthusiastic. I have no trouble keeping up with children of many energy levels and exceptional needs.
As a tutor, I emphasize lesson plans and interactive work that fits the individual student. I believe that a student should be involved in planning their own method of learning, especially for establishing the retention needed to perform well on standardized tests. I encourage a building of study and organizational skills along with teaching, and strive to provide confidence and lasting skills of learning beyond any improvement in performance.
Education & Certification
Undergraduate Degree: University of Florida - Bachelors, History
ACT Composite: 27
Comedy, Improv, Writing, Surfing, Hanging out with my Bulldog
AP Art History
AP US History
College Level American History
High School English
High School Level American History
Study Skills and Organization
What is your teaching philosophy?
I believe that engagement and focused attention is an important skill to hone with any student. Building this skill through tutoring will help students perform better in any school subject, as well as create a happier, more confident learner.
What might you do in a typical first session with a student?
I would ask the student where they are having trouble in the subject and what they have tried to do in the past to fix it. This question is important because it outlines where the student is most frustrated or disinterested. This also engages the student to be more proactive in learning a subject that may have otherwise been discouraging.
How can you help a student become an independent learner?
Organizational and study skills can be empowering to a student. The best way to inspire a student to learn on their own is to encourage organization and patterns that make sense to them. Each student is different and can find excitement in being proactive in how they learn.
How would you help a student stay motivated?
Often coursework and standardized testing goals can have lofty long-term objectives that are daunting to students. Setting short-term goals and breaking down challenging lessons can create steady victories for a student. Maintaining a positive and encouraging attitude, I believe, will help students stay motivated, as opposed to imposing pressure and penalties to inaction.
If a student has difficulty learning a skill or concept, what would you do?
Sometimes students need more time focusing on one aspect of a skill that they are struggling with. It might require a different approach or method of learning to develop the knowledge needed to move forward. Sometimes students just need a break the same exercises over and over, and just respond well to learning the skills with technology or a different atmosphere.
How do you help students who are struggling with reading comprehension?
Difficulty with reading comprehension can be based on a large variety of factors. Some students need to improve their vocabulary. Other students have difficulty with long, complex sentence structure. Other students just need to read out loud and at a slower pace than others. Finding the issue through assessment in the beginning with a student, can help establish the next steps to improve.
What strategies have you found to be most successful when you start to work with a student?
I find that outlining the lesson for the day and giving the student the goals and objectives that need to be achieved in one session helps them focus and relate the exercises to one another. I also like allowing my students to walk around for 30 seconds or so and burn a little energy if they're struggling.
How would you help a student get excited/engaged with a subject that they are struggling in?
I believe that learning any subject can be fun if a student feels like they perform well. Learning becomes boring and frustrating when students don't succeed. While incorporating games, technology or hands-on learning activities can be helpful to encourage a disinterested student; it's also important to create small victories in subjects that are difficult, so students can gain interest through accomplishment.
What techniques would you use to be sure that a student understands the material?
Often students can learn the most by leading the lesson, meaning either directing the teacher from one step to the other in solving a problem, or even teaching a method they have just mastered to another student. Memorizing and repeating is not a guarantee for retention.
How do you build a student's confidence in a subject?
By remaining positive and creating short-term goals, even students with difficulty can find excitement in a hard subject. Students are often as excited about learning as the teacher, so even in something that may have seemed uninteresting before, if a tutor is overly excited and optimistic, then at least a little will pass off to the student.
How do you evaluate a student's needs?
Simply by asking them. Students are very aware of where they are finding difficulty, and while they may frequently answer with "I don't know" and frustration, asking them where they need help and why they think they don't understand is a good barometer of next steps in a lesson plan.
How do you adapt your tutoring to the student's needs?
Being patient with a student's learning habits can help move through a lesson faster more than cutting out material for time. Not everyone learns at the same rate, however if material is skipped because the student hasn't completed grasped one exercise, then they will fall behind later on.
What types of materials do you typically use during a tutoring session?
Pen and paper! Studies show that taking notes on paper and adapting lessons into your own words prove to create better learning than typing or just listening. I always encourage students to solve a problem along with me, or follow what I'm saying and take notes.