I am passionate about biology and helping others discover the wonderful mechanisms that make the world around us so beautiful!
I graduated from Tufts in 2015 with a B.S. in Biology, focusing on plant science and genetics. I have worked in laboratories that use molecular techniques, and in general my loves are genetics and molecular biology. I am also passionate about plants and fungi, and have a podcast about mushrooms and fungi at www.moreldilemma.org.
I am a very strong writer and editor and can help students make their writing stronger and more persuasive.
My high school diploma is in the International Baccalaureate program, so I am familiar with IB standards and assessments. My Higher Level courses were English, Biology, Psychology, and Theater. During high school I also competed at the national level in speech (Interpretation) and participated in school shows and musicals. After college I co-ran an informal acting workshop in New York City for two months.
Whether you are looking for a 7 on your IB exams, want to be a stronger writer, desire a better public speaking or performing presence, or need some assistance in the biology classroom, I am looking forward to helping you meet your goals!
Education & Certification
Undergraduate Degree: Tufts University - Bachelors, Biology, General
GRE Verbal: 167
GRE Analytical Writing: 5
Cosplay, Knitting, Crafting, Writing, Podcasting, Video Games, Aikido
Q & A
What is your teaching philosophy?
I will try to help a student come to a correct answer by themselves by encouraging them to use the knowledge they already have to think through the problem. I don't like to give answers without letting a student work for them: finding an answer yourself is so much more satisfying, not to mention more useful!
What might you do in a typical first session with a student?
The first session is a good place to establish how far the student has come on their own, as well as a good opportunity to establish their goals for tutoring. Are they looking to receive easy answers, or instead to learn how to work through difficult problems on their own?
How can you help a student become an independent learner?
I believe in working side-by-side with a student, as opposed to lecturing. If the student needs an in-depth explanation, I will give it and then ask related, but different, questions to ensure understanding. I believe knowing how to answer the question is just as important as knowing the right answer.
How would you help a student stay motivated?
I know what it's like to hit a roadblock and get discouraged. I find the best thing to do is try something related to the roadblock, but different enough to relax a bit before coming back to the problem topic. I also know how important it is to take breaks if things aren't making sense. Being calm and comfortable is a big part of learning.
If a student has difficulty learning a skill or concept, what would you do?
We can approach answers from different angles. There is always more than one way to learn a skill! Some students learn well with hands-on activities, some with metaphors. The most important thing to help a student who is having difficulty is to ask where the roadblocks are and then knock them down one at a time.
How would you help a student get excited/engaged with a subject that they are struggling in?
The best way to "make" a student excited about a hard subject is actually to "make" the hard subject more exciting to the student. If a student who loves space were having trouble with math, for example, I would bring in real-world examples of how our math problems might be used in aerospace engineering. Once you find that connection, the rest flows more easily.
What techniques would you use to be sure that a student understands the material?
I would ask questions that are related to example problems, but different enough that the answer to the new question isn't immediately obvious unless the student understands the processes and material up to that point.
How do you build a student's confidence in a subject?
If a student is struggling, then a subject is hard. Whether it's multiplication tables or gene recombinations, overcoming difficulty is something to be proud of. Reinforcing how far a student has come so far and reassuring them if they get stuck can go a long way in maintaining the student's confidence.
How do you evaluate a student's needs?
A student needs to communicate with me on what they are struggling with. Beyond that, it might be clear that a student is struggling with a certain part of a problem or subject. In that case, I would need to make sure the student recognizes the source of the struggle and work with them to develop a way to tackle it.
What types of materials do you typically use during a tutoring session?
This depends largely on the student. If someone is a tactile learner, I might bring in props that represent a concept the student has been struggling with. I like using dry-erase boards because they create colorful, interactive images that the student and I can use to clarify concepts together.
How do you help students who are struggling with reading comprehension?
I would begin by having a student verbally summarize each sentence and then the main idea of a paragraph. Practicing aloud can be helpful for developing the same kinds of skills internally.
How do you adapt your tutoring to the student's needs?
The great thing about tutoring is it's very personal. I don't have to give a lecture to a room full of people. If there is a question a student wants to focus on, there's nothing stopping us from diving into it as far as the student wants to go.
What strategies have you found to be most successful when you start to work with a student?
I like to have the student help me lay out a plan for our sessions. If I have a plan that doesn't work for the student, they won't benefit! When we discuss the topics the student most needs help on, and how they would like to tackle it, tutoring is much more effective.