A photo of Breanna, a tutor from San Diego State University

Breanna

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I genuinely believe that all students should have access to quality tutoring and other resources that foster and promote growth and push students to realize their full potential. Tutoring is something that I have always done to give back to my community. I have been a tutor since I was in middle school and now as an attorney, I enjoy tutoring just as much as I did when I first started, if not more. I have worked with students from all cultural and economic backgrounds and enjoy sharing my passion for learning with others. I have tutored in many different subjects with students of all ages. I sincerely enjoy tutoring, which is why I tutor in addition to my full-time job as a practicing attorney.

Breanna’s Qualifications

Education & Certification

Undergraduate Degree: San Diego State University - Bachelors, Social Science emphasis in Political Science

Graduate Degree: Howard University School of Law - PHD, Law

Hobbies

Music, dancing, hanging out with friends, outdoor activities, singing and community service

Tutoring Subjects

Algebra

Arithmetic

College Essays

Contract Law

Criminal Law

Elementary Math

Elementary School Math

Essay Editing

Homework Support

Law

Math

Middle School Math

Other

Pre-Algebra

Public Speaking

Study Skills and Organization

Summer

Tort Law

Writing


Q & A

What is your teaching philosophy?

I believe everyone should have the opportunity for quality learning and education. My philosophy is to ensure students understand concepts by any means necessary. It is the tutor's responsibility to evaluate and adapt to a variety of learning styles. I pride myself on my ability to connect with students from diverse cultures, religions and socioeconomic statuses.

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

In a first session with a student I would like to get to know a little about them (name, age, grade, etc.) and see what they already know about the subject matter. As a tutor, I do not like to "give answers" or simply show a technique. I like to see what the student understands to see their thought process and how they learn. Knowing this will allow me to be a more effective tutor.

How can you help a student become an independent learner?

I can help a student become an independent learner by teaching the student the subject matter and having the student teach me the subject using their own words. Having a student explain how to do a particular problem helps ensure the student really understands the subject and also helps with presentation and verbal skills.

How would you help a student stay motivated?

I will help students stay motivated by giving small breaks when it seems like they are not retaining the information and remind students of what they learned so they can see that they have made progress. Also, making learning fun helps students stay motivated.

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

Figure out how I need to explain the concept in words or in a way that they will understand. Really breaking down concepts to see exactly where the student is having problems.

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

I will tell the student to underline/highlight the important sections of each paragraph and directly after each paragraph, write a short description of what they have just read. This will help jog their memory and help with the overall understanding of what the student has just read when they finish the passage.

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

My strategy depends on the age of the student. I find it most successful to get to know a little bit of background about the student and play to their interests. I believe that relating to the student will help them open up about their strengths and weaknesses and builds trust so the student will freely communicate with the tutor about any subject-matter issues.

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

It is critical to try to determine why the student is struggling to drive how to keep the student engaged. I try to relate a student's interests with what they are struggling with to show them ways to be excited/stay engaged with the subject. There is no one way that I do this, it really depends on the student; I adjust my methods based on the individual needs of my students.

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

After reviewing a subject, I have the student explain and solve a problem to me. I find that when a student can teach and explain a subject, they have grasped the subject matter. Teaching the subject also helps with a student's oral skills and comfort with public speaking. My technique also depends on the student. The technique used depends on the student and how the student learns best.

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

I will show the student how far they have come with their understanding of the subject. Often students feel that they do not know anything about a subject they struggle with, but when you show a student their progress and remind them that they are not the only ones to struggle with the subject, I find that their confidence builds. Also finding out why the student does not feel comfortable with the subject allows me to use that for practice, so the student can build their confidence through more exposure.

How do you evaluate a student's needs?

I evaluate a student's needs by seeing how they approach a problem to see where the student went wrong. This allows me to see how simple or complex the error is to evaluate where I can help. I also ask students what they need help with. Helping a student identify their strengths and weaknesses is a key component to getting help and improving grades or test scores.

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

I adapt my tutoring to meet the needs of the student. I have a "by any means necessary" philosophy when it comes to tutoring, so I am willing to do change how I tutor from student to student to address individual needs.

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

My materials depend on the subject matter as well as the age of the student. I use paper, pen/pencil, a calculator (sometimes), flashcards and any other materials that help the student feel comfortable.