# George

Certified Tutor

Undergraduate Degree: Colby College - Bachelors, Economics/Spanish

Graduate Degree: Massachusetts Institute of Technology - Masters, Urban Studies

Scrabble, Beach, Walks, Parks

What is your teaching philosophy?

My teaching philosophy is patience builds confidence. With patience, all students can build confidence. I think teachers need to be patient to help students build their confidence.

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

The student and I will introduce ourselves. I want to hear about the student’s history with the subject. I want to know what the student's challenges are. I then want to discuss how we can meet the student's goals working together.

How can you help a student become an independent learner?

I work the "I do, we do, you do" method. I think students need examples. They need relevant real world examples to help them better understand concepts. I think a lot of practice is key to comprehension. With practice, students can become more independent.

How would you help a student stay motivated?

I would first let the student know that difficulty with the subject matter is normal. I think students need to understand that it may take some time to master a concept. I would then discuss strategies and resources that might help the student to get better at the skill or concept.

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

For math, I think students need to focus on the numbers. Students need to also focus on how to turn written math into mathematical expressions or equations. I would take the text and show students how to pull out the important information. The students would then practice this strategy.

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

I found that students need to celebrate the small successes that they have. Learning new concepts is a process. The more check marks a student can put on mastering different topics, the more confident they feel about attacking new concepts.

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

I would try to make the situation realistic for the student. Struggling with a topic is not unusual. Students need to understand that they will take subjects that are demanding. The key is for them to try different ways to address the subject matter. Students could have a different learning style, and require additional resources.

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

I would use closing strategies, like an exit ticket, direct questions, or verbal or written summaries. I usual have students create their own problems (similar to the ones in the concept area) and solve them. If the student can do this, then I feel confident that they understand the concept.

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

I build a student’s confidence with patience and practice. I also celebrate success, so that students can see their learning progress.

How do you evaluate a student's needs?

I typically start with basic questions from a unit. Sometimes, prerequisite questions that use the same skill set help in assessing student needs as well. For example, if a student has a hard time adding and subtracting fractions, I then know that this will carry over to solving equations with fractions. We would first need to address the basic adding and subtracting.

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

I try to figure out a student’s learning style and how they like to receive information. If a student is more visual, I would introduce more pictures and graphical representation. If a student is more logical, I would focus more on the reasoning behind the math.

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

I think the work space is important. Students need visual models. I also like to have practice problems that students can work on. I also tell students where they can learn more about a concept. Different kinds of media and technologies are used as well.