I am currently a junior at Rutgers and am working toward completing a Physics/Geological Sciences double major. Also, this year I began taking Civil Engineering courses because I plan on pursuing a graduate degree in geotechnical engineering. Since my junior year of high school I've been tutoring math and physics at highschool, AP, and college levels. I'm a very visual learner who tries to understand a topic conceptually before dealing with abstract numbers and equations, and have found that once I can visualize something, the equations involved in the topic begin to look much less scary. My view is that anyone can be taught any subject as long as it is taught in the right way (which is different for everyone), and my goal as a tutor is to not be proven wrong.
Education & Certification
Undergraduate Degree: Rutgers University-New Brunswick - Current Undergrad, Geological Sciences / Physics
SAT Math: 740
SAT Writing: 770
Biking, running, hiking, camping, reading fantasy books
What is your teaching philosophy?
My teaching philosophy is that everyone learns in a different way, and learning to gear lessons toward a student's method of learning will not only help them, but will help you think about things in a different way.
What might you do in a typical first session with a student?
Before the first session I would ask them the general things that they are learning and what they feel they need trouble with. During the session itself, I would again ask what the student was having trouble with and then go through those things step by step to see what parts they don't understand. After this I would drive those points home by going over a few problems.
How can you help a student become an independent learner?
I can help a student to become an independent learner by giving the student some things I think are necessary for him to do on his or her time, and then giving him or her a few things which they don't need to do, but are a good idea (like going over the problems and possibly making similar problems themselves). The goal would be for him or her to see how studying different things in different ways affects his or her learning and how they can learn well alone.
How would you help a student stay motivated?
I would tell them to make sure they text or email me if they ever have a quick question, and I would suggest making short-term goals.
If a student has difficulty learning a skill or concept, what would you do?
I would try to introduce it in a very visual way so that the student can think about it in a different way.
How do you help students who are struggling with reading comprehension?
For students struggling with reading comprehension I would recommend a few things which help me, like tracing with a finger or mouthing the words. If this were for a test situation I would give some advice about skimming, but regardless I would recommend they read as much as possible.
What strategies have you found to be most successful when you start to work with a student?
I find it very helpful to sit down and get a really good idea of the student's strong and weak points.
How would you help a student get excited/engaged with a subject that they are struggling in?
Every subject taught in school is very interesting, even if it's taught that way. The easiest way for a student to get engaged in a subject they are struggling in is to relate it to them somehow.
What techniques would you use to be sure that a student understands the material?
To be sure that a student understands the material, I would have them explain why they're doing what they're doing.
How do you build a student's confidence in a subject?
By going back after a few lessons to show a student how much he or she has learned.
How do you evaluate a student's needs?
The easiest way to evaluate a student’s needs is to ask them. After that, I would make note of what things they are and aren't able to do easily.
How do you adapt your tutoring to the student's needs?
I adapt my tutoring to the student's needs by letting them control the pace and by working toward his or her strengths.
What types of materials do you typically use during a tutoring session?
Typically I would use the materials they use in class, or any useful handouts I could find. There are also some YouTube videos that are great for visualizing concepts.