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I have been working with kids from ages 6-20 since I was in high school. I have worked as a tutor and mentor for college athletes, dance instructor, reading tutor, camp counselor, high school teacher (English and History), and now, curriculum director. I enjoy helping kids who struggle so that they can find success in their education and learn to love learning. I have excellent reading and writing skills, and I am adept at helping students make connections to literature and express themselves through writing. My approach is to discover students' strengths and weaknesses and to use those strengths to improve their skills and confidence.

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Karen’s Qualifications

Education & Certification

Undergraduate Degree: Central Michigan University - Bachelors, English - Secondary Education

Graduate Degree: Walden University - Masters, MS in Education - Curriculum and Instructional Technology


Hiking, Camping, Reading, Coaching soccer, Dance, Music

Tutoring Subjects

American Literature

British Literature

College English

College Essays

College Level American Literature

Comparative Literature


English Grammar and Syntax

Essay Editing

High School English

High School Level American Literature


Middle School English

Middle School Reading

Middle School Reading Comprehension

Middle School Writing



Study Skills

Study Skills and Organization


Q & A

What is your teaching philosophy?

My teaching philosophy is to help each individual student connect to the content so that they may find their purpose for learning. Making learning relevant can be a strong motivator for students.

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

My typical first session would include learning about the student's interests and their strengths, and areas for improvement as a learner. I would want to understand their learning style, and how they understand and process new information so that I can be as effective as possible.

How can you help a student become an independent learner?

I can help students become independent learners by not only helping them with a particular assignment, but by giving them the skills and tools they need to apply to other assignments in the future.

How would you help a student stay motivated?

To help a student stay motivated, I would choose examples, assignments, and tasks that teach to their strengths and interests. When students are successful, they are motivated and encouraged to continue. Helping them connect the material to their interests and strengths will help them to feel connected and motivated.

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

For students struggling with reading comprehension, I work through reading strategies that are research-based to build their skills for reading and comprehending independently. I want the student to have a "toolbox" of strategies for reading, so that they are comfortable and confident when they read new material.

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

When starting with a student, I think it is most important to build rapport and develop a partnership for learning. Having a plan for improvement and allowing the student to be a part of that plan development allows them to have ownership of the learning process so that we are working together to help them succeed.

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

I would find a way to connect that subject to something the student is interested in. Putting difficult subjects in terms a student can understand can make them more comfortable with the material and also help them see how the subject is relevant to their lives.

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

I would use questioning, independent practice, and a variety of assessments to check for understanding.

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

Building students' confidence is a step-by-step process. Depending on how much a student is struggling, designing the learning plan to allow for small, frequent victories is a great way to build students' confidence and help them to stay engaged.

How do you evaluate a student's needs?

Generally, this information comes from the client and can sometimes be self-explanatory. Depending on the content, I would use an oral or written assessment to check for prior knowledge and areas that need improvement.

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

Based on the first session, where I gather information on the student's learning style and interests, I would adapt the material and instructional strategies to the student's individual learning needs and interests.

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

I use all types of materials from texts and written materials to technology-based resources. I have also used music/lyrics, visual/art, and audio books.

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