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Mary

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I have an Master's Degree in Education from Nova Southeastern University, and a BS in Sociology from Lincoln University. My minor at Lincoln was English Composition and Creative Writing. In my 30 yrs. of teaching experience, I have worked in K-12 schools, as well as teaching Preparatory English Composition to college freshman. When I am not working in the field of Education, I facilitate classes in yoga, mindful movement and mindfulness meditation for people of all ages, 2 to 92. My foundation in mindful practice gives me patience and compassion, in all endeavors. I work well with all levels of learners, because I am understanding and willing to meet each learner where they are. Then, we can work together to accomplishing goals. Additional education: All but dissertation for Doctorate of Education; studied theater at Yale University; Simga Tau Delta Writer's Fraternity member.

Mary’s Qualifications

Education & Certification

Undergraduate Degree: Lincoln University - Bachelors, Research Sociology

Graduate Degree: Nova Southeastern University - Masters, Educational Tech & Curriculum Design

Hobbies

Dance, Mindfulness Practice, Yoga, Kai, Nia, Loving Kindness

Tutoring Subjects

Adult Literacy

College Application Essays

College English

Elementary School

Elementary School Reading

Elementary School Writing

English

English Grammar and Syntax

Essay Editing

High School English

High School Writing

Microsoft Excel

Microsoft Office

Middle School Reading

Middle School Writing

Other

Phonics

Public Speaking

Study Skills

Study Skills and Organization

Technology and Computer Science

Writing


Q & A

What is your teaching philosophy?

My teaching philosophy is that each student is an individual. When a tutor is willing to meet each student where they are in the learning process, and then work together towards meeting goals, anything can be accomplished.

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

Listen, listen, listen! Allow the learner to express both their pride and their frustrations with their own learning process. I believe that students who feel they have ownership of their own learning are better able to accept and work to overcome obstacles--even the youngest of students.

How can you help a student become an independent learner?

I can help a student become a more independent learner by having the patience to guide the learner in taking a step back from the content and from answers in order to look at the process of learning as a whole. This can allow a student who is struggling to gain perspective on what and how much they actually DO know. This broader point-of-view can lessen frustration while tackling those areas of learning that need improvement.

How would you help a student stay motivated?

I help students to stay motivated by addressing learning in manageable chunks that help to ensure repeated success over time. Trying to do too much at once, or progress too quickly, can actually increase frustration and slow down advancement toward mastery.

If a student has difficulty learning a skill or concept, what would you do?

When a student faces difficulty in learning a skill or concept, sometimes a pause to reflect and review what has already been learned (prerequisite skills) can bring a needed boost to understanding.

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

I find students who are struggling with reading comprehension can often benefit from one or more of the following: 1. Slow down! Reading speed will naturally increase with increased comprehension. Don't be afraid to pause at the end of a sentence and reflect on whether you've understood what you read. Read it again, if you need. 2. There is no shame in tracking with your finger to ensure your eyes are following the text. After a bit of following your finger, your eyes will naturally learn to track on their own. 3. Deliberately read out loud, slowly and clearly. Listen to what you are reading. Follow the flow of information. (NOTE: Please do not confuse deliberately reading out loud with unconsciously moving your lips while reading silently. Try to avoid the latter.)

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

When I begin to work with a student, I like to balance what I am told with the student's thoughts about the situation. I am vigilant to create a learning environment rooted firmly in my guidance, and yet honor the student's ownership of their own learning process. Listening to the student is key.

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

I find the key to getting a student excited or engaged with the subject they struggle with is to put the student in touch with what they DO know about the topic. Also, finding a connection between the subject matter and a real-world interest of the student can spark engagement.

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

I find that if a student can both create a meaningful question and discover an answer to that question, then that student usually understands the material.

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

Focusing on what the student does know about a subject, with more emphasis than is placed on what the student does not yet know about that subject, builds confidence.

How do you evaluate a student's needs?

My first tool for assessing a student's needs is asking the student. Students are often quite intuitive about what will help them understand.

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

I begin adapting my tutoring to meet each student's needs by embracing that each learner is unique. I have not convinced myself that any single technique or methodology is the only "right way". I remain present with the learner, in each moment, shifting learning strategies as is needed.