I strongly believe that education is the platform to creating change on every issue on the spectrum from our economy, health issues, and civil rights for the better. Every child deserves access to an excellent education, a fair shot at reaching their full potential, and a society that welcomes change. Education goes beyond the school classroom and if given the appropriate tools, in and outside the classroom, all children can learn.
Outside of teaching fifth grade full-time and part-time tutoring/babysitting I enjoy staying active by running, biking, playing soccer, reading, watching documentaries, online shopping, and spending time with friends and family.
Undergraduate Degree: Central College - Bachelors, Elementary Education & Spanish
Running, biking, playing soccer, reading, shopping, trying new restaurants, spending time with friends, the beach, traveling, and spending time with my family!
What is your teaching philosophy?
I believe all children deserve a shot at the American dream, and an excellent education is one of the keys to make that happen!
What might you do in a typical first session with a student?
In a typical first session I would get to know the student, do a mini survey to get to know likes/dislikes, exchange facts about each other, and gather some brief data points to become familiar with the academic level we will be working with.
How can you help a student become an independent learner?
Boost self-confidence by providing work that's slightly below their independent working level to make them feel confident! Share the importance and how we use a specific content in everyday life, and ultimately scaffold questions/problems to a level they can work at independently.
How would you help a student stay motivated?
I would invest students in our tutoring by correlating success in our sessions to success in the classroom/real life. Invest students in the idea of malleable intelligence (i.e. students are not born smart, but everything has to be worked for).
If a student has difficulty learning a skill or concept, what would you do?
Approach it a variety of ways (dry erase boards, highlighters, markers, counters, manipulatives, videos...) and attempt to find exactly why a certain skill/concept is difficult. It might be other skills that are keeping a student from mastering a skill/concept.
How do you help students who are struggling with reading comprehension?
To help students who are struggling with reading comprehension I would identify specifically what reading comprehension skills they are struggling with, expose the student to monitoring specific strategies and track the actual use of them, use graphic organizers, expose students to different type of questioning, and keep detailed data of what I am seeing during tutoring sessions.
What strategies have you found to be most successful when you start to work with a student?
I have found that building a relationship, trust, and truly getting to know exactly where a student is successful when working with a student.
How would you help a student get excited/engaged with a subject that they are struggling in?
To help a student get excited/engaged about a subject they are struggling with I would first learn what subject they like and why. I would connect those likes to subjects they are struggling with and learn exactly why they are struggling with that subject. I would then have conversations of how that is completely okay and we will only get better if we practice what we are not good at (depending on student I would make connections with real life: some athletes were not super starts when they were younger, much time and practice was put in to perfect their skills).
What techniques would you use to be sure that a student understands the material?
To ensure that a student understands the material I would make sure to check for understanding throughout the tutoring lesson and ultimately do a formal check-in at the end to see what was mastered.
How do you build a student's confidence in a subject?
To build a student's confidence in a subject, I would expose/review previous learned skills and show them HOW much they already know. Boost their confidence and progressively scaffold more skills/rigor.
How do you evaluate a student's needs?
To evaluate a student's needs I would: -Have the family, student, and main teacher complete a survey. -Analyze current school data if possible (state exams, school tests, report cards...) -Identify exactly the content they need help with and have them complete a grade level assessment to gauge exactly where they are at.
How do you adapt your tutoring to the student's needs?
I adapt my tutoring to the student's needs by providing an environment that is preferable to them (speed of lesson, materials we use...). I would make sure I am familiar with their learning styles and what they are most receptive to and make sure I am prepared with what I need (manipulatives, videos, counters, highlighters, post it notes, markers...).
What types of materials do you typically use during a tutoring session?
Depending on the content area we are focusing on I typically use: Math: pencil, paper, whiteboard, counters, manipulatives, videos. Reading: pencil, paper, reading material, highlighters, post it notes, graphic organizers.