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I have always had a passion for mathematics from a very early age. Growing up I have always been fascinated with logic/ reasoning and figuring out problems and I would like to share my enthusiasm with others. Currently I am working towards getting my teachers certification and I would like to gain more experience working with students so that I can better myself and make an impact with the skills that I have. I have 2 years of experience as a tutor so far for HISD and I would love the opportunity to work with people that need that extra push. I look forward to hearing from you!

Jonathan’s Qualifications

Education & Certification

Undergraduate Degree: University of Houston - Bachelors, Psychology

Q & A

What is your teaching philosophy?

My teaching philosophy is that positive reinforcement and encouragement can make a difference in children. I work with many students that do not come from the best background, and many come with educational deficits, but I accept the challenge and do my very best to not only explain but give a variety of examples and methods in order to build upon the knowledge that each individual student possesses.

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

I would introduce myself and try to get to know the student's interests so that I can relate the information in ways that he or she might understand. I would start off with something that they know how to do to build their confidence, and then progressively get into more challenging assignments.

How can you help a student become an independent learner?

I feel that giving the child the encouragement as well as the educational tools to succeed will allow them the confidence to pursue their own education and become independent thinkers and learners.

How would you help a student stay motivated?

I think that encouragement above all else is key. When a student really believes that someone thinks they can do an activity, that pushes them beyond what they themselves think are capable of doing, and it drives them to meet the high expectations you have set for them.

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

For mathematics, the main ways I would help a student is through practice and real-world examples. If they know of something in the real world they can relate to, then the answers might become more logic reasoning than just formulaic and will help them to cement their knowledge.

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

If there is a word that a student can not comprehend, I always instruct them to read the sentence and see what the possibilities could be, and then use logical reasoning to deduce or interpret what the word is. I also might throw in little hints every now and then, but the focus is on them figuring out for themselves and not just me telling them the answer.

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

The strategies that I found to be most successful are the use of manipulatives as well as incorporating real-world examples. Being able to manipulate things in the real world and proving it with mathematics and logic help to cement the knowledge learned and create a deeper understanding of the material.

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

Through my experience, I believe that movement facilitates learning. So we might engage in a pre-study stretch or something to get the student back and focused on the material.

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

I would make sure the student understands the material by doing random stop and checks during the lesson. Asking them random questions about the material to make them think about the content on a deeper conceptual level.

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

When a student gets discouraged or asks me for help, I usually focus on what they do know about the problem. I try not to answer the question but to guide the student to arrive at the answer themselves. If the student feels he can answer it on his own, he builds up his own confidence, while I give him positive reinforcement and encouragement.

How do you evaluate a student's needs?

I evaluate a student's needs by gauging their knowledge of the content they are trying to work on and trying to bridge the learning deficits as needed.

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

I believe that the best quality an educator can have is to be both patient and flexible to the student's needs. Understanding that not everyone learns the same way, and that there might be a better way or alternative to something, helps expand my mind and forces me to be creative in how I help students.

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

I usually have a pencil and a notebook with me as well as a calculator. I will occasionally bring more items if necessary, or if it will facilitate the learning process.