I've been teaching for nine years all over the world. My passion for teaching first began in 2008 when I met a peer who happened to be a teacher. After work we would meet and she would tell me stories about her students and her dayher days seemed much more exciting and fulfilling than mine. It was in 2008 that I decided to quit my job, go back to school, and become a teacher. While back at school, I feel in love with education and completed a Bachelor's and two Master's degrees. I was teaching ESL nearly the entire time I was working on my own degrees.
Once I felt I had sufficient education under my belt, I set sail around the world. I spent seven years living and working abroad in many different countries. I've had the opportunity to see most of the world and I couldn't be more grateful. The variety of languages and cultures I've been exposed to and emerged in inspires me to carry on teaching ESL so I can meet new people and continue the journey of sharing what I know while learning from others.
In my experience, the most successful ESL environments are those formed around task-based learning and the communicative approach. Lecturing students about how to learn a second or foreign language simply does not workI want students to try it for themselves, without fear of making mistakes, and develop their English skills over time in order to achieve their goals.
Education & Certification
Undergraduate Degree: Kaplan University - Bachelors, Organizational Communication
Graduate Degree: National University - Masters, Strategic Communication
I enjoy going to the beach, doing yoga, sailing, and hiking.
Q & A
What is your teaching philosophy?
My Statement of Teaching Philosophy: The best teachers understand the methods by which their students learn best. I communicate openly with my students in order to better understand both their short-term and long-term goals. A supportive environment is critical for students trying to become better in any academic subject. My way of understanding students' needs goes far beyond simply realizing they want to achieve a particular test score; it has more to do with recognizing students' attitudes and beliefs about the subject, and gently guiding them toward the most positive state of mind for achieving their own personal versions of success.
What might you do in a typical first session with a student?
During a typical first session with a student, I would conduct a fairly detailed needs analysis and try to understand how and why the student has set certain goals. Next, we would explore what the student knows and doesn't know about the subject, and dive into areas of interest to find personal strengths. Students who are able to tap into their strengths and use them to their advantage are often able to find the motivation and commitment needed to achieve their goals more quickly. Finally, after having completed this subject exploration process, we would determine areas to focus on during our sessions together.
If a student has difficulty learning a skill or concept, what would you do?
If a student finds any particular skill or concept difficult, we would take a multi-step approach: 1) Discover the best way this particular student has been able to succeed in other subjects--we all have different learning styles, and we need to know what works best for each individual; 2) Work together to communicate openly about what the student understands and what they're still struggling with; 3) Try various activities to explain the concepts through physical movements, visual aids, stories, or games; 4) Learning is a fun process, and we need to be patient with ourselves as we learn new things--so, just because a concept isn't fully understood in one session, that doesn't mean we won't be able to get there next time.
How do you build a student's confidence in a subject?
A student's confidence in a subject comes from within; as the tutor, I'm simply here to help them find it. I expect my students to have high personal standards, set realistic and achievable goals, and develop relevant attack plans to overcome weaknesses in any subject area.