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Paul

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I have been an elementary teacher for 7 years in several grade levels. I enjoy teaching all areas but especially love math and reading. These are passions of mine, and you can often find me reading my own books whenever I have time. I believe that a positive environment is the key to learning. When students are happy, safe, and enjoying their tasks, they acquire new information much more quickly and easily. It is my mission to always create this environment with my students and those I tutor. I have experience tutoring both elementary and middle school students in all subjects and have done this privately for many years. When I am not teaching you can find me reading, hiking, running, or playing with my son.

Paul’s Qualifications

Education & Certification

Undergraduate Degree: University California Davis - Bachelors, International Relations

Graduate Degree: San Francisco State University - Masters, Multiple Subject Teaching Credential

Hobbies

I enjoy reading, hiking, running, and playing with my son.

Tutoring Subjects

10th Grade Math

11th Grade Math

12th Grade Math

1st Grade

1st Grade Math

1st Grade Reading

1st Grade Writing

2nd Grade

2nd Grade Math

2nd Grade Reading

2nd Grade Writing

3rd Grade

3rd Grade Math

3rd Grade Reading

3rd Grade Science

3rd Grade Writing

4th Grade

4th Grade Math

4th Grade Reading

4th Grade Science

4th Grade Writing

5th Grade

5th Grade Math

5th Grade Reading

5th Grade Science

5th Grade Writing

6th Grade

6th Grade Math

6th Grade Reading

6th Grade Science

6th Grade Writing

7th Grade

7th Grade Math

7th Grade Reading

7th Grade Science

7th Grade Writing

8th Grade

8th Grade Math

8th Grade Reading

8th Grade Science

8th Grade Writing

9th Grade

9th Grade Math

9th Grade Reading

9th Grade Writing

Adult Literacy

History

Arithmetic

College English

College Level American History

Earth Science

Elementary Algebra

Elementary Math

Elementary School

Elementary School Math

Elementary School Reading

Elementary School Science

Elementary School Writing

English

European History

High School

High School Chemistry

High School English

High School Level American History

High School Writing

Homework Support

IB Geography

IB Geography HL

IB Geography SL

IB History

IB History HL

IB History SL

Math

Middle School

Middle School Math

Middle School Reading

Middle School Science

Middle School Writing

Other

Phonics

Pre-Algebra

Reading

Social studies

Summer

Writing


Q & A

What is your teaching philosophy?

I believe that a positive classroom, one where students cooperate and help one another, is the key to learning. With morning meetings, open discussions, and peer-to-peer interactions students become comfortable in the classroom since they have built the environment where they are working and learning. Every morning we discuss our classroom and ourselves, share events in our lives and experiences we will have. We use the Tribes system of activities to create a classroom of positive learners. With clearly defined rules, class jobs, and a strong sense of community students take pride in their classroom, their space, and their peers. Students become used to helping one another in their groups answer questions, solve problems, and rely on each other. The students are focused through their sense of community in the class and doing what is right. There are clear expectations that have been established since the beginning of the year. The students have demonstrated right and wrong behaviors and understand the consequences of their actions. I use "attention getters" when needed to focus the classroom and to transition to new activities. The transitions themselves are short and orderly as these are commonplace and have been practiced. They know that in their community they have the support of their classmates and the freedom to make choices.

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

I work hard to find students books and reading materials that are at their level. I use many strategies to reach students. We read together, read separately, do picture walks, phonics review, comprehension questions, KWL charts, and many others. The key is often finding something the student can relate to or has interest in. Once that is reached, their horizons can be broadened.

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

It is important to get to know who I am working with and for them to get to know me. Trust and respect need to be established for any in depth learning to happen. I find commonalities between myself and my student, and we share interests both within academics and outside.

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

I try to relate subjects to the student. How has it/will it affect them? What can they do with this knowledge? Why is what we are learning important? Once this happens, a student is more committed to learning.

What techniques would you use to be sure that a student understands the material?

This depends on the subject and the student, but frequently I ask a student to prove to me how they know something. They need to explain their thinking.

How do you build a student's confidence in a subject?

We start off slow. Easier problems at the beginning to boost confidence and to get the basics, and then we start working on more challenging problems. I always show the student that if they do something that is easy, they can also do it if it is hard as the steps are often similar.

How do you evaluate a student's needs?

In order to evaluate the student's needs I speak with them and watch them work. I listen to their thinking on a problem and their explanation of an answer. I am always analyzing a student's work and looking for areas to help them improve.

How do you adapt your tutoring to the student's needs?

As an elementary teacher, I have experience teaching many students many different subjects. I am always changing my teaching methods. If a student learns better visually, I will offer more pictures. If a student learns better by reading, I will write instructions or steps down for them to look back at. However the student learns best, I am always adapting how I teach to their needs.

What types of materials do you typically use during a tutoring session?

This depends on the subjects. In math, I will have manipulatives, games, counters and many other tools to help the students. In reading, I use fiction and nonfiction books, phonics cards, and fluency phrases among others. It is all about finding the right tools to help the student.

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

During the first session I will get to know the student. I will ask what they are doing in school, their likes and dislikes, how they like to learn, what they do for fun, and anything else that will help me learn about who they are. We will work on some preliminary assignments as I begin to assess their abilities before we progress onto more challenging work.

How can you help a student become an independent learner?

In order to become independent, a student first needs confidence. I work with students, slowly getting more difficult and slowly putting more and more of the responsibility on them.

How would you help a student stay motivated?

Motivation is a key factor to learning. I want to make sure that my students are always interested in what they are learning. This is done through relating the material to them and their lives, providing incentives, but most importantly, increasing the intrinsic value that learning has.

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

If a student is struggling, I first find the reason. After I have assessed them, I isolate their hardship and begin to work on that. I begin with easier work to ensure that they grasp the concepts, and then increase the difficulty. Once the concept is mastered, I rework the idea into the original skill.