My name is Christopher and I recently graduated Summa Cum Laude from Colgate University. I am passionate about STEM subjects and using my skills to help instruct others. Throughout college, I sought opportunities to mentor individuals; I found these opportunities both through the organic chemistry department as a weekly tutor, and through the athletic department. Specifically with my Division I cross-country team, I noticed that membership in our program did not require a community service component. I believe it is important to serve other people as an organization, so I helped to reinitiate a tutoring program between our team and a local nearby elementary school. In this program, athletes from our team go to the school for an hour a week to offer help in reading or math. The teachers and athletes all responded positively to the experience and the mentoring program is continuing this year.
In addition to my love of tutoring, I also have a passion for working with other people. During my time at Colgate University, I demonstrated my interpersonal skills and ability to relate to my community through the Konosioni Senior Honor Society. Without a direct service component to our organization, I worked to establish service opportunities through our crowd-funding platform for students in our society to volunteer. I communicated effectively with leaders of non-profit organizations to establish connections between the university and the community that surrounded it. In an effort to communicate my progress, I gave presentations at our society meetings to report on my projects.
I hope to bring my tutoring experience, desire to work with others, and my interpersonal skills to your team.
Education & Certification
Undergraduate Degree: Colgate University - Bachelors, Biochemistry
ACT Composite: 32
ACT English: 31
ACT Math: 36
ACT Reading: 33
SAT Composite (1600 scale): 1390
SAT Math: 750
Board Games, Running, Rock Climbing
What is your teaching philosophy?
I believe that every student has their own individual strengths and different learning styles. The teacher needs to be adaptive to these different preferences in order to maximize their ability to relate to the student. My plasticity to my student's needs allows me to maximize their potential.
What might you do in a typical first session with a student?
I will definitely spend some time (~10 Minutes) introducing ourselves and finding common interests. Once we have found a connection, I will do a basic diagnostic of learning styles to try and understand how a student thinks (i.e. does the student attack the problem head on or analyze the problem). Then we will begin work on the material.
How can you help a student become an independent learner?
I will help the student develop strong study habits to use beyond their typical sessions.
How would you help a student stay motivated?
If a student finds a particular topic to be difficult, I will help prepare a lesson to help the student learn. If the student needs additional teaching expertise, I can recommend online learning resources and question websites.
How do you help students who are struggling with reading comprehension?
Students that struggle with reading comprehension I believe are best aided by more reading practice. I will ask the student what he/she enjoys reading and ask them to make a greater effort to fit reading for pleasure into their lifestyle. I can also recommend online resources.
What strategies have you found to be most successful when you start to work with a student?
I have found that kindness and patience are the most important aspects to working with a student. I seek to understand what the student is struggling with, and then approach the problem head on. If I am unable to help with a particular topic, I make a special effort to prepare a lesson for next time.
How would you help a student get excited/engaged with a subject that they are struggling in?
With students that have trouble connecting to the material, I try to find ways to make it fun. I start by using their interests to make analogies of how the topic can apply to their interests. If this approach still is unsuccessful, I will ask them what their goals are and emphasize the importance of hard-work in achieving those goals.
What techniques would you use to be sure that a student understands the material?
Tracking a student’s success over time using a variety of testing materials will be important in order to ensure that the student understands the material.
How do you build a student's confidence in a subject?
I believe that confidence can best be built by showing the student how much they actually know. This can be accomplished by working on smaller problems the student understands before working up to the larger goal. Hopefully, this meticulous type of problem solving will also identify areas of weakness for the student.
How do you evaluate a student's needs?
I believe evaluation of a student's needs is best accomplished by verbal communication and subsequent checkups throughout the session. In terms of becoming the best tutor for my students, I believe communication is a very important thing.
How do you adapt your tutoring to the student's needs?
I continue to stress that communication is the most important factor to becoming an adaptive tutor. I seek to listen attentively to my students and respond to their feedback.
What types of materials do you typically use during a tutoring session?
During a tutoring session, I stress the student's needs based on their academic syllabus. I also seek to supplement with lecture materials from my days in the classroom reflecting on how I learned the material.