My name is Nick and I have recently graduated college with a mathematics degree. Math was my favorite subject in school and that is also why I am a math teacher as well. I enjoy trying to relate things in math to being outside or with sports. Doing math just in general can be boring for students so I try to make things a bit more fun and it really helps my students in school.
Undergraduate Degree: Centenary College - Bachelors, Mathematics
anything outside I enjoy, food, shopping, baseball, friends, family is important as well.
What is your teaching philosophy?
I like to try and make things a bit more fun for students. I think having students just sit in their seats all day is boring and they do not get a lot out of it. My students are out of their seats often throughout class periods, even if it is just for a few minutes, but they are able to participate then and even teach their classmates themselves, and it helps the other students understand better. I also like to do a lot of different types of examples so there are no surprises for the kids when they take a test.
What might you do in a typical first session with a student?
I would start with getting to know them a little bit because it will make it easier to tutor the student. If they need to take a short break, I then have something that I know they enjoy and we can talk about to get their mind off of math for a few minutes. So, I would get to know them a bit, and then we would slowly get into math the first session, because it is not good to throw tons of math at them the first week and get them lost. If I do a few less problems with them the first week, but explain things better to them, they will understand it better and will be more successful in the long run.
How can you help a student become an independent learner?
They can become more of an independent learner, because with doing things on their own with a tutor, they will become more confident in themselves. Being with a tutor is basically being an independent learner because they are not in a classroom with other students, and they are still learning material and becoming smarter and more confident in what they are learning.
How would you help a student stay motivated?
I can help a student stay motivated by making the math enjoyable. Math does not need to be boring, and I try to make things fun for them. Also, the better they do on a test, maybe a small reward comes their way from me depending on how they are doing both in class and with me. The more exciting I can make the sessions with the students, the more they will remember, and the more motivated they will be to have a session with me. The better they do in the sessions with me, the more confident they will be in school, and that can also motivate the student as well.
If a student has difficulty learning a skill or concept, what would you do?
There is never only one way to teach a concept or idea to a student. The more ways you are able to teach students the same material, the better they will be. Also, there could be many concepts that students do not understand, and so you may need to change to a different way of teaching it to them for them to better understand it.
How do you help students who are struggling with reading comprehension?
I struggled with reading comprehension as well in school, and so I know where they are coming from. The slower that we read something, the more you understand it. Also, underlining important words helps a lot as well. In math, there is not as much reading except for in word problems and reading the directions, so making sure they understand what they read and what they are looking for is very important. Underlining will really help them understand what they need to find in math.