I taught English in Taiwan from the summer of 2014 till the summer of 2015 working for HESS International Group and have spent the past year as an ESL Tutor for a host group run by Dr. Hao Wang in Springfield and Westfield Massachusetts. In Taiwan, I was both an English kindergarten teacher and a cram school EFL teacher. As an ESL Tutor in Massachusetts I worked primarily on my students’ academic English and did a couple hours a week of preparation for the TOEFL and SAT.
Tutoring has been an immensely educational experience for me. I have learned much about how to properly prepare students for the tests they’ll have to take as well as the challenges they face in their everyday life. Working in a one-on-one environment is also a great way to target specific areas of need with each student.
Education & Certification
Undergraduate Degree: Endicott College - Bachelors, English - Creative Writing
I'm a writer! check out my website: https://tylergolecwriting.com/
Q & A
What is your teaching philosophy?
Be prepared and have fun!
What might you do in a typical first session with a student?
I will first talk with them, and see where they are with the material and what their desires are as a learner. Then we could move in other short assessment-like activities.
How can you help a student become an independent learner?
By allowing students to attempt to solve problems on their own, you allow them to build independence.
How would you help a student stay motivated?
I would keep lessons engaging and the material constantly progressing.
If a student has difficulty learning a skill or concept, what would you do?
I would build the lesson around that certain target area. I would try to keep the feeling of progression so the student doesn't lose confidence.
How do you help students who are struggling with reading comprehension?
Start with shorter material and build into longer material. Also, allow for multiple chances to read the material. After the first read through, ask a simple question. After the second, ask more specific or multiple choice questions. After a third read through, ask more thought-provoking material.
What strategies have you found to be most successful when you start to work with a student?
I want to build a relationship of trust. So, I would treat them with patience and respect. My classes would also be on point and well thought out. Students need to trust what their teacher is teaching if they are going to learn.
How would you help a student get excited/engaged with a subject that they are struggling in?
I would try to include material that is intrinsically motivating to them. If they are struggling with listening comprehension, we will watch/use a program that would interest them even outside of the class.
What techniques would you use to be sure that a student understands the material?
I would assess them in a variety of ways. Can they use the material in conversation with me? Can they use the material to complete a written quiz?
How do you build a student's confidence in a subject?
I allow the student the opportunity to succeed by giving them challenges that are inside their capabilities but are not necessarily easy for them.
How do you evaluate a student's needs?
Some students have very direct needs that they know and are willing to talk to you about. For others, you need to draw it out from them, so it is good to learn about how they want to use the material and what they don't need the help with and what they do.
How do you adapt your tutoring to the student's needs?
As a tutor you should be willing to adapt freely with your student’s needs. So, my lessons would be directly targeted and changed to address the growing and changing needs of the student.
What types of materials do you typically use during a tutoring session?
This varies a lot based on the specifics of what I'm teaching. Generally, I like to have access to a white board and markers for easy display of the class material. A text book or prepared material on that session's subject material is also something I commonly like to have.