I am originally from New Orleans, LA. I relocated to the DC area at the age of 14, where I completed high school. I received a full tuition academic scholarship to attend the University of Wisconsin at Madison. I thoroughly enjoyed my college years, as I have been traveling the world ever since. It was during my time at Madison when I decided to become a teacher as I felt an obligation to pour into the youth as some many have done for me. Currently, I am building a consulting firm independently, however I always make it a prerogative to be an educational advocate in some capacity.
Education & Certification
Undergraduate Degree: University of Wisconsin-Madison - Bachelors, Secondary education
i write poetry, play the saxophone and piano. I learned how to ride a unicyle when I was ten (still can't say why), I love traveling, as I have lived and worked on 4 different continents.
Q & A
What is your teaching philosophy?
It is my goal to challenge students to become critical thinkers and practitioners. I am a strong advocate of hands on learning, inquiry based learning, and project/service based learning. As a social studies teacher, I strongly encourage the idea of the Global citizen, which occurs through a holistic awareness of different perspectives on social justice issues surrounding nationality, race, gender, religion, language, ability, sexual orientation, etc. Students should leave my classroom with the skills necessary to facilitate their own learning on international issues, such as human rights, active citizenry, economic development, and literacy, just to name a few. My desire is for young people to have the ability to critically analyze varying perspectives on those global issues in order to formulate their own opinions and possible solutions.
What might you do in a typical first session with a student?
Get to know exactly who the student is personally by asking questions about general interests and hobbies and likes and dislikes. Follow up by getting to know the student academically by asking: What is your favorite subject? How do you like to learn? Who is your favorite teacher and why? Academic and professional goals? What do your consider your strengths and weaknesses as a student?
How would you help a student stay motivated?
Constantly reinforcing the importance of why education is key to success. I am a strong advocate of critical student thought. I encourage students to question "why." I have found that when you allow students to autonomously inquire, without teacher/tutor judgement, they are more likely to engage and find intrinsic motivation.
If a student has difficulty learning a skill or concept, what would you do?
I would try and relate the skill or concept to the student's interest and/or real world application.
How do you help students who are struggling with reading comprehension?
Help the student understand the purpose for reading. Focus the student's attention on what they are to learn. Help the student to think actively as they read. Review content and relate what they have learned to previous knowledge.
What strategies have you found to be most successful when you start to work with a student?
Honesty is key. Healthy and genuine relationship building center on: clarity of exceptions, interest in getting to know student, and having fun while being productive.
How would you help a student get excited/engaged with a subject that they are struggling in?
In these situations, I find it most effective to relate the subject to student interest and/or current events.
What techniques would you use to be sure that a student understands the material?
I would have the student teach me the material back as if I know nothing about the material.
How do you build a student's confidence in a subject?
I would offer words of encouragement and praise. Ask the student's opinion on current events related to the topic in order to help the student understand that their thoughts on the subject matter can potentially help create solutions.
How do you evaluate a student's needs?
Firstly, I would ask all parties involved (student, parent, teacher, if available) what they believe the student's needs are. Then, I would assess the student's needs through our general interactions and what is necessary for the student to do in order to obtain their academic goals.
How do you adapt your tutoring to the student's needs?
I understand that students acquire information in different forms. Thus, I use teaching strategies appropriate for whatever type of learner the student most aligns.
What types of materials do you typically use during a tutoring session?
Computers, and, depending on the content, household/commercial items of any relevance to the subject.
How can you help a student become an independent learner?
My ultimate goal as an educator is to equip students with the skills to learn effectively. Research, time-management, and speaking skills are critical to becoming an independent learner.