I am a St. Louis native, but my studies in French have taken me around the world and brought me into contact with new ideas and new friends. For that reason, I've seen the value that learning another language can bring to someone's life. Through teaching, I hope to give other language students the tools to communicate with other people and to see other ideas and places from a different perspective.
Undergraduate Degree: Saint Louis University-Main Campus - Bachelors, French, communication, international studies
Graduate Degree: Saint Louis University-Main Campus - Masters, French
Reading, writing, film, hiking, cooking
What is your teaching philosophy?
I approach language teaching as a conversational interaction that incorporates expression in its written and spoken forms. In my experience, a second language is acquired most effectively when it is presented dynamically and with cultural relevance.
What might you do in a typical first session with a student?
I would ask a student to elaborate on their language background and any particular difficulties they currently face. A topic of equal importance would be past teaching methods to which the student has been exposed. I prefer to engage the student in a spoken usage of concepts, combined with written exercises that highlight the nature of those concepts.
How can you help a student become an independent learner?
In the context of language teaching, I can lead a student toward cultural resources--music, videos and books--that can help them engage with the language on their own time. I strive to pass along an enthusiasm for the subject matter.
How would you help a student stay motivated?
I would diversify the contexts in which the student encounters the material, giving the learning process energy and fluidity. It is also important to continue defining concrete goals.
What strategies have you found to be most successful when you start to work with a student?
From past experience tutoring French, I have proceeded in stages of vocabulary and grammar in such a way that I refer continually to previous material to constantly recycle and exercise concepts.
How would you help a student get excited/engaged with a subject that they are struggling in?
As far as language learning is concerned, I think that cultural context is key in the face of a learner's struggle. Language doesn't just exist on a page: it is animated in nature, spoken, sung and performed. Often, these living expressions provide help in overcoming difficulty with a particular concept.