What makes me a great tutor is my commitment to helping students make meaning on their own. I like giving students tools, tips, and techniques that will help them become independent learners. I like for students to leave a session with something they can use during independent study time or in class that will help them be successful in any class or other academic settings.
Education & Certification
Undergraduate Degree: Morgan State University - Bachelors, Chemistry
Graduate Degree: University of Maryland-University College - Masters, Secondary Education
Watching awkward Horror Movies, Crime Dramas, Action Films, and their international counter parts. Reading, cooking, baking, and creating things with my hands are amongst my hobbies.
High School Biology
High School Chemistry
High School English
SAT Subject Tests Prep
Study Skills and Organization
What is your teaching philosophy?
My philosophy is that anyone can learn anything at any time as long as he or she is physically and mentally able and willing to put in the effort it takes.
What might you do in a typical first session with a student?
First, I like to get to know my students as people. I want to know who you are, what you like, and what you hope to achieve through tutoring. Next, typically I would help establish the student's goals for tutoring and administer diagnostics (if necessary). Then I would gather information on materials and resources the student is using.
How can you help a student become an independent learner?
I can show students how to maintain a level of organization to support their success. Set up systems for breaking large projects into smaller tasks. In addition, show them problem-solving techniques as well as text analysis to extract and organize information faster. These are only a few things that students can learn to become independent learners.
How would you help a student stay motivated?
It helps motivation if students can see the relevance of their work to themselves and their lives. I would help students explore this relevance. Next, sometimes students really need a cheerleader. Someone in their corner who believes in their success no matter what. Lastly, students really need someone who will listen without judgement. I can be that person which helps establish the personal connection needed to increase a student's desire to do well.
If a student has difficulty learning a skill or concept, what would you do?
Learning skills is a matter of practice, unless there is an underlying issue with cognition or some other phenomenon affecting how a student's brain works. So to learn a skill, I would try to provide many opportunities in different contexts for a student to practice the skill. Concepts, on the other hand, require a student to get deeper and use higher order thinking skills to build connections between themselves and the topics. So questioning and discussions are good methods to promote this level of understanding.
How do you help students who are struggling with reading comprehension?
Reading comprehension can be improved through reading material at the students independent/leisure level, and NOT at the instructional level. This way the student can focus on identifying main ideas and supporting details as well as summarizing pertinent information, using visualization, and drawing inferences. These are all part of reading comprehension. If the chosen text is beyond this ability level, then the cognitive load on the student will be too great and include processing new vocabulary as well as navigating unfamiliar syntax. These are two skills that can interfere with building comprehension.
What strategies have you found to be most successful when you start to work with a student?
Establishing a relationship with a student is necessary for his/her success. Listening to what students think, feel, and know is one of the best methods for building trust and rapport. If a relationship is not first established, then it can take longer for students to benefit from instruction. Another part of building relationships is being honest with students about my knowledge and capabilities. Students can tell when an adult is bluffing, and bluffing will not help build trust.