A photo of Peter, a tutor from The University of Texas-Pan American

Peter

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As a math tutor, I provide help to students who request my assistance, and this is possible through the use of available tools and knowledge to demonstrate step-by-step procedural executions of specified mathematics problems. I will strive to make the process enjoyable and memorable through encouragement, motivation, visualization, and practice. I also like to ask questions throughout tutoring sessions to guide students through steps in the problem. My ultimate goal for the student is independent practice and content mastery.

Peter’s Qualifications

Education & Certification

Undergraduate Degree: The University of Texas-Pan American - Bachelors, Math

Hobbies

Taking walks in the neighborhood, reading non-fiction books (physical or e-books)


Q & A

What is your teaching philosophy?

My teaching philosophy is to keep the teaching simple enough for the student to understand, use, and become successful. It is for the purpose of creating independent learners who set themselves up for passing the course.

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

Ask the student how things are going in the class, what concepts are currently being taught, and what uncertainties in this or any other past concepts exist.

How can you help a student become an independent learner?

Ask lots of questions during the tutoring session. As a former college math tutor, I would always perform this task with every student I tutored. This in turn makes the student think as he/she is working on the problem at hand.

How would you help a student stay motivated?

I often express interest in helping answer the questions the students have and assure them that they can learn as I help. I also make sure that they not only listen, but write down the details. I also encourage students to try some practice problems on their own, and if they get at least one problem correct, it is my hope that this can create at least some excitement in the student.

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

It helps to read a question together and then go back to a particular section or page to find the paragraph that would help answer the question. Constant guidance is necessary to help such students.

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

Asking questions, referring to pages in the textbook to where we can find useful formulas and steps, and reminding students of their goals and dreams.

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

I would first ask the student what the goal for their education is. What is their major? What would you like to be doing after graduation? Then I try to link their dreams and desires to the subject and tell them why this subject is worth passing to get to that goal.

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

I ask questions. I demonstrate steps on a whiteboard. If necessary, I use visual objects where appropriate in the assignment.

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

I start with the most basic concept possible and build on it. In math, it is required to know prior concepts to master new ones, since they will depend on the prior concepts.

How do you evaluate a student's needs?

First, I would need to know the specific subject (not just math in general, but what type, i.e., algebra, calculus, statistics, geometry, etc.). Next I would see where the student is in his or her studies, and then ask the student questions on any struggles or uncertainties. These would be the needs to help be an effective tutor to this student.

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

First, we have to realize every student is different. Some students need help in only a few concepts, while others will need a lot of help. I work with whatever the student already knows and help the student to answer the uncertain questions with the knowledge he or she already has. No matter what, my tutoring requires steps to solve the problem, whether it is just one step or multiple steps.

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

A whiteboard and dry-erase marker, calculator (mostly the TI-84 Plus), eraser, formula sheets, tables and charts (if necessary, such as in a statistics class); if paper and pencil are needed, I would supply those also.