Challenge. Conquer. Enjoy. Repeat
Education & Certification
Undergraduate Degree: Abilene Christian University - Bachelors, Physics, Mathematics
Graduate Degree: University of North Texas - PHD, Physics
Sports, programming, youtube (sadly), thinking, and traveling, talking about stocks
Q & A
What is your teaching philosophy?
I can't teach effectively unless I communicate in ways the student can understand. So though I will always try to make a student think through the process, my philosophy is to do what's necessary for students to understand the logical steps to an answer.
What might you do in a typical first session with a student?
Small talk. For challenging topics, I want to figure out how the student thinks. I also want to set the stage that I always try to make the student think.
How can you help a student become an independent learner?
By guiding them to find answers on their own. I want them to learn how to ask themselves the right questions.
How would you help a student stay motivated?
Press when needed. Pull back when needed. Break when needed. Have fun when needed. Set stern goals when needed.
If a student has difficulty learning a skill or concept, what would you do?
I'd spend as much time as possible trying to figure out what is the logical fallacy in why a student can't understand. Then my goal would be to make everything in terms of something they can understand.
How do you help students who are struggling with reading comprehension?
Ask them to tell me what they read. Then ask them to explain to me what they read in their terms. With special regard to word problems, my favorite questions are "So, what does this question say it's asking for? What information does it give you? How would you start this?"
What strategies have you found to be most successful when you start to work with a student?
Joking around and using weird examples.
How would you help a student get excited/engaged with a subject that they are struggling in?
I try to find a way to show them why the subject is useful. If not, then try to make a goal with a prize at the end of some kind.
What techniques would you use to be sure that a student understands the material?
My technique is mainly for the student to walk me through a problem in their own terms and ask specific questions that are critical to logically solving a question. I also will intentionally say something incorrect and ask the student why I'm wrong.
How do you build a student's confidence in a subject?
The way I build confidence strongly depends on the type of student. I try to encourage in a way that gets the best response.
How do you evaluate a student's needs?
For a particular topic, I ask probing questions into how the problem is solved in their mind.
How do you adapt your tutoring to the student's needs?
I always seek to communicate on their terms as much as possible by using whatever language/terminology/examples they best understand.
What types of materials do you typically use during a tutoring session?
Anything and everything. Videos, regular writing tools, music, props...if it's there, and I think it'll get the point across, I'll use it.