As a teacher, I was fortunate to receive extensive training on rigorous learning environments and how this high-quality education can and must be accessible to all students. Guided by my own research of contemporary practices and self-initiated professional development, I created an environment where all students feel capable and empowered to succeed in my Middle School Mathematics and third grade classes.
My focus on developing relationships has been crucial to my success as a teacher. Demonstrating genuine respect for my students has led them to attain self-confidence and a growth mindset. After a student entered my classroom insisting that she would never succeed in Mathematics at the beginning of the year, I relentlessly encouraged her by giving her consistent and positive feedback. Through differentiated instruction and a focus on self discipline, she and the other students ended the school year feeling capable of achieving their academic and personal goals. This result was also made possible by the relationships that I developed with their families when sharing successes and challenges.
Teaching in an international setting has made me an effective collaborator. The opportunity to develop instructional units with colleagues from diverse backgrounds has informed my own understanding and guided my growth as an educator. By remaining open to new ideas, I've been able to introduce meaningful coding and technology initiatives into the classroom, and to successfully implement a behavior management strategy that emphasizes empathy and compassion. Building strong relationships with students, parents, colleagues, and supervisors has made me a successful teacher.
Education & Certification
Undergraduate Degree: Cornell College - Bachelors, Elementary Education
I am interested in web design, computer coding, playing the banjo, and reading.
Q & A
What is your teaching philosophy?
I firmly recognize the importance of a constructivist learning experience. Accessing previous knowledge is the most effective way to build on it. People learn in environments where they are free to question and independently explore within their personal learning style without fear of making a mistake. Another aspect of learning that I strongly agree with is the idea that people most effectively succeed through meaningful experiences. This translates to students learning from doing rather than a lecture. It is crucially important for people to participate in learning engagements in order to develop a rich understanding of the material.
What might you do in a typical first session with a student?
I would want to get to know the student's personal learning preferences and develop an understanding of his or her current understanding of the material. This way, we can create a plan for effective lessons.
How can you help a student become an independent learner?
I have a wealth of online resources for students to use outside of the tutoring sessions. I also effectively utilize Google Classroom to create personalized assessments. Providing individualized resources for the student will promote independence.
How would you help a student stay motivated?
I have noticed that motivation diminishes when students feel unable to improve. I create a positive atmosphere where students feel fully capable of reaching goals through effort and persistence.
If a student has difficulty learning a skill or concept, what would you do?
I would try to identify the reason for the difficulty and move forward from there. Lessons could be altered in many ways including accommodating a learning style, adjusting the pace of the lesson, or integrating technology.
How do you help students who are struggling with reading comprehension?
Finding the correct level of difficulty for a reading is a crucial first step to improve reading comprehension. From there, I promote reading visualization techniques, creating connections to the text, and developing effective summaries of the material.
What strategies have you found to be most successful when you start to work with a student?
It is really important for me to get to know the student as an individual and for them to know that I am genuinely interested in his or her success.
How would you help a student get excited/engaged with a subject that they are struggling in?
I tailor subjects to the varied interests and learning styles of students.