A photo of Philip, a tutor from University of Arkansas at Fort Smith

Philip

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It is my passion to help students understand mathematics deeply. In over five years of teaching in the classroom, it has become more apparent than ever that students need individualized instruction and support. Anxiety that develops from being overwhelmed or not feeling heard can be crippling to a mathematics student, and it is my goal to assist students in overcoming that struggle on a daily basis.

Philip’s Qualifications

Education & Certification

Undergraduate Degree: University of Arkansas at Fort Smith - Bachelors, Mathematics w/ Education Licensure

Hobbies

Games, movies, crime shows, and anything Tolkien

Tutoring Subjects

6th Grade Math

7th Grade Math

8th Grade Math

Algebra

Elementary School Math

Math

Middle School Math

Pre-Algebra


Q & A

What is your teaching philosophy?

All students have the capacity to learn. Through individualized instruction and deep mathematical discussion, the struggles of learning new material merely become goals to achieve rather than struggles to overcome.

What might you do in a typical first session with a student?

In a typical first session with a student, I would introduce myself and listen to the student as they explain what they are looking for in private tutoring sessions. When the student is ready and has no more questions about the tutoring process, we would then delve in and demystify the mathematics that they are studying!

How can you help a student become an independent learner?

Independent learners possess an understanding of what it means to be proactive in their education. From providing students with alternative educational resources to teaching them effective methods for self-instruction, I am here to help my students improve not only their mathematical knowledge but also learning strategies which will serve them for a lifetime.

How would you help a student stay motivated?

Motivation requires faith that a positive outcome can be achieved. Often, students are overwhelmed with the intensity of their math curriculum. With effective planning and support, all students can succeed!

If a student has difficulty learning a skill or concept, what would you do?

I always like to hear from the student how the topic was presented to them initially. Clarification of the skill or concept becomes much more valuable to the student when it is provided in the context of their current learning situation.

How do you help students who are struggling with reading comprehension?

Breaking down sentences is key to understanding what a question is asking. Focusing on key words and phrases is a very effective way to deal with reading comprehension problems.

What strategies have you found to be most successful when you start to work with a student?

Listening to the student is of utmost importance. When I hear what they are dealing with, it makes the task of assisting them much more effective.

How would you help a student get excited/engaged with a subject that they are struggling in?

Many times, teachers will move directly into abstract ideas without establishing a concrete basis for those ideas. Visual aids are not only helpful, but also fun!

What techniques would you use to be sure that a student understands the material?

Application of skills and connecting concepts together are revealing signs of understanding. Having students explain what they are doing not only allows me to ensure their success, but also shows them any areas in which further concentration is needed.

How do you build a student's confidence in a subject?

Confidence is built through encouragement and repetition of successful engagements. Students who are leery about material have often not dealt with it for sufficient lengths of time. Again, mathematical discussion is a key player in developing a confident student.

How do you evaluate a student's needs?

The first step is to listen to the student. Once I have heard what they have to say about their needs, we delve into the material. Deeper issues of which the student is unaware are often revealed and addressed.

How do you adapt your tutoring to the student's needs?

There is certainly no reason to continue trying something one way when it is clearly not working. Learners are all different, and so we must look at education from diverse perspectives. Varied instruction is key to enabling students to succeed.

What types of materials do you typically use during a tutoring session?

If it is in person, then paper, pencils, rulers, calculators, and any other visual aids are highly recommended. Depending on the subject, there are certain manipulative learning tools that have shown to be quite effective.