I'm a Bay Area environmental policy professional working for an organic fruit & vegetable distributor in San Francisco. I discovered my passion for working with students while I served abroad in the Peace Corps in the Dominican Republic. As a student of languages since I was 6 years old, studying Spanish and Russian, I'm familiar with the difficulties of language study and have a lot of experience working with students to overcome these obstacles to learning.
When I am not working, I spend my time reading, taking online courses in environmental and water policy subjects, and cooking. I'm also a member of an AfroCuban amateur dance company and avid salsa dancer.
Undergraduate Degree: Rutgers University-New Brunswick - Bachelors, Political Science and Russian Language and Literature
Graduate Degree: Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey - Masters, Environmental Policy
Cooking, reading, dancing, hiking, traveling, learning!
What is your teaching philosophy?
I think the most important thing a tutor can do is make the student feel confident and empowered to find the solution or solve the problem. There are a variety of ways to do this -- and every student is different. Once a student feels empowered to find the answer, the learning channels can flow more freely.
What might you do in a typical first session with a student?
It's really important to first establish some common ground. The next most important thing is to figure out the best ways in which a student learns -- tactually, aurally, visually, verbally, or some combination therein.
How can you help a student become an independent learner?
Creating habits and systems for self-learning is important to independent learning. There are many methods to do this -- like flashcards, for example.
How do you build a student's confidence in a subject?
By starting on parts of the subject that the student has already dominated, even if it's the most basic parts. From there, you work to build the difficulty in the subject at a rate in which the student can maintain, being sure to not surpass the student's ability.