I am an autodidact. However it was not always like this. I have been in the position where learning was not an enjoyable experience. After this I concluded that many school approaches to learning are for large classrooms but they miss the most important part of learning, which is everyone has unique learning abilities. Through my many trials and errors I have studied and analyzed various learning approaches and amongst all those I found motivation, passion, and consistency are key. I am here to support you along the way and in time make you an independent thinker with the ability to learn anything you desire on your own. That sense of freedom and empowerment is the intrinsic reward I get from teaching and I hope to have the privilege to help and serve all my students! Carpe diem!
Education & Certification
Undergraduate Degree: Nova Southeastern University - Bachelors, Business Administration and Management
Cinephile, basketball fanatic, reading, and acting.
Elementary School Math
Elementary School Reading
Elementary School Writing
High School Business
High School Economics
High School English
High School Writing
Middle School Reading
Middle School Reading Comprehension
Middle School Writing
What is your teaching philosophy?
My teaching approach varies per individual, as everyone learns better with different methods. By pinpointing the individual's most effective method, I create an individual plan. Regardless of the approach, I have found active engagement with subjects enhances the learning experience. Interestingly, I am a certified personal trainer, and with time I came to realize that kinesthetic learning is one of the most impactful factors in my teaching and learning approach. I promise I won't make you do push-ups, but you will see and enjoy a whole new perception of learning!
What might you do in a typical first session with a student?
Getting to know my student is the first and foremost important thing. A bond and trust has to be created, which will free any inhibitions one might have with someone they don't feel comfortable with. Learning is trial and error, and a student needs that safe environment and support, where they can feel comfortable making mistakes knowing ultimately that they are learning the material at hand.
How can you help a student become an independent learner?
Through my many trials and errors, I have learned what works and what doesn't. By providing the tools and techniques that I have used to enhance my learning they can use that as well, with the disclaimer that everyone's learning process can be unique. Using what works for them and discarding the rest, and constantly seeking new ways they find works for them, will put them on the path to becoming full-fledged autodidacts.
How would you help a student stay motivated?
Motivation is fundamental in any endeavor, and my passion for learning is something that manifests itself whenever I learn something new and I get to teach it to someone else. That contagious energy will help support them. Meanwhile and thereafter, they learn why studying and learning doesn't have to be boring and not engaging, which will propel them to pick up those books and exercise that brain. It'll be like going to the gym!
If a student has difficulty learning a skill or concept, what would you do?
Perhaps use a different approach and ask the student if they would feel comfortable trying something else. A concept sometimes has to be analyzed from various facets to get a well-rounded idea of it. Specific examples work best when they are more personal because one can instantly relate to it, so figuring out what interests they have that might be suitable for a specific and more revealing example.
How do you help students who are struggling with reading comprehension?
Assuming they have understanding of the fundamentals and sentence structure, vocabulary has always been important to me. I make sure they know the definition to every word when analyzing a passage. After, I make sure they are actively engaged in their reading. Using simple storytelling techniques will engage the sensory nerves and help with comprehension. For example, the statement "Ice is cold", might be abstract for a foreigner, and to make that idea concrete, I would grab an ice cube from my refrigerator and show them the ice cube and even "act out" shivering.
What strategies have you found to be most successful when you start to work with a student?
Kinesthetic learning has been one of the most effective strategies. Also, visual teaching methods. My job is to always turn the abstract into concrete (no pun intended).
How would you help a student get excited/engaged with a subject that they are struggling in?
Many times, a subject becomes uninteresting because the learning approach is ineffective, so without reward there is no impetus to continue learning. I would analyze their learning approach first and make adjustments, and I would also make it interesting by adding storytelling approaches. Adding humor also stimulates endorphins, which make a memory, or in this case study material, more memorable.
What techniques would you use to be sure that a student understands the material?
Periodic testing is important to gauge, but there are also different ways to test someone's knowledge. Trying different testing approaches also helps me and them understand which kind of testing they are more apt in. With any testing of course, it is important to know that a test only indicates what you know now, with the given test format, but it is no indication of where a student will be in the future. That is what learning is all about. Tests are important, but too much pressure is placed on test-taking that students forget that they need to learn the material so that they can apply it in real life. Focusing on actually learning the material will result in a byproduct of excellent test results.
How do you build a student's confidence in a subject?
Focusing on the fundamentals and making sure they have a progressive building of learning blocks will create a solid and confident building of knowledge in a subject, metaphorically speaking.
How do you evaluate a student's needs?
Testing them initially will highlight the areas where they may have gaps. By also creating a relationship and letting them feel comfortable, they will open up and also reveal where they feel they don't understand something fully.
How do you adapt your tutoring to the student's needs?
My lesson plans are adjustable per individual, and once I get to know the students better, we both find what works best and focus on that approach. Making the learning experience fun and engaging is essential, and techniques and approaches are always adjustable.
What types of materials do you typically use during a tutoring session?
Paper, pencils, pens, calculators, and any other tools that pertain to the corresponding subject are always present. Also, like Montessori schools, I like to have materials that can create a possible hands-on learning experience.