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I have 20 years of experience in education, and have a Master's degree in Educational Leadership and a B.A. in Elementary Education; I am a proud graduate of Clemson University.
I have experience teaching a wide range of students and subjects and have taught English as a second language in Seoul, South Korea, high school Spanish, 7th and 8th grade science and social studies, and have spent the majority of my career teaching primary grades K-6. My passion; primary career focus is working with teachers and at-risk students, as a Literacy Coach in an urban school district, to increase literacy rates. Frederick Douglass said, "Once you learn to read, you will be forever free"; I believe that being able to read allows one freedom and the confidence to choose any path in life; opens doors figuratively and literally. Everyone can learn to read and write; they just need a teacher with passion and purpose to take the time and effort to determine how to best instruct the individual student; I am that teacher. I am excited to work with even more students, as a Varsity tutor, to continue to "fill in educational gaps" and walk through some doors that have been closed to our students over the past few months due to COVID restrictions.

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Shelby’s Qualifications

Education & Certification

Undergraduate Degree: Clemson University - Bachelors, Elementary Education

Graduate Degree: Arkansas State University-Main Campus - Masters, Educational/School Leadership


kayaking, swimming, reading, traveling, and restoring vintage furniture

Tutoring Subjects

College English


Elementary School

Elementary School Math

Elementary School Reading

Elementary School Science

Elementary School Writing


Essay Editing

High School English

Homework Support


ISEE- Middle Level

Learning Differences

MAP Prep


Middle School Reading

Middle School Reading Comprehension

Middle School Writing





Special Education


SSAT- Elementary Level

Study Skills

Study Skills and Organization


Test Prep



Q & A

What is your teaching philosophy?

All students can learn, but in a different way, and on a different day! I differentiate instruction to meet the unique needs of each of my learners.

What might you do in a typical first session with a student?

I will learn about each student’s interests, fears, accomplishments, struggles, and goals they would like to reach from tutoring and for their future.

How would you help a student stay motivated?

Praise and encouragement. I also instill in my students that it is okay to fail because "failure leads to success!" You must always keep trying because you will eventually "get it!"

If a student has difficulty learning a skill or concept, what would you do?

Find a way that works for the student to get it. I would be creative, be intentional, and be reflective.

How do you help students who are struggling with reading comprehension?

I teach students to tune in to their inner voice as they are reading; to be metacognitive, which means thinking about thinking. As we read we are asking questions, making connections, making predictions and inferences, etc. Once a student realizes they are doing these things they become excited about reading. I also teach students to quickly sketch what they are visualizing as they are reading, and/or to annotate as they are reading. All of these skills aid comprehension.

What strategies have you found to be most successful when you start to work with a student?

You must build trust with students. It is important to learn about each other as individuals. It is also important that students know/learn about their tutor’s experience as an educator, and learn about how their tutor can help them.

How would you help a student get excited/engaged with a subject that they are struggling in?

I would tell a success story of a struggling student that I have taught. I would also tell of a time that I, personally struggled as a student personally when I was their age, and tell how I overcame it. Educators must be empathetic to a learner’s fears and anxieties.

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