I believe firmly that learning and exam preparation is a journey and I like to help students create their own path. I am a graduate of Loyola University Chicago, where I majored in political science. I am currently a law student at Chicago-Kent College of Law, and aspire one day to practice corporate law with a focus on financial compliance.
I grew up in Silicon Valley and have seen what intense pressure to succeed does to young minds. Given my life experiences, I told myself that if I ever were to tutor, I would do so to assure students that everything would be okay and to work with them in a reduced-stress environment. My top three goals are to give students skills to succeed in life, to help them manage stress during this trying time in their lives, and to give them guidance for future success.
My biggest joy in tutoring comes from working with students to figure out what works best for them and building relationships with them. Tutoring to me isn't just about giving information for them to recycle for a test, but rather giving students longstanding skills for problem-solving, exam preparation, and navigating high school and college.
In addition to working with students on content for exams, I also program calculator programs for TI-84 calculators so that students can spend more time on problems that may take up more time.
In my free time (when I have it), I work on curriculum for students, spend time with my friends and cat, and enjoy watching Frasier and Portlandia.
Education & Certification
Undergraduate Degree: Loyola University-Chicago - Current Undergrad, Economics, Political Science
ACT Composite: 33
ACT English: 33
ACT Math: 36
ACT Reading: 34
ACT Science: 30
Listening to music, Exploring Chicago, Reading about International Politics, Learning Russian
College Application Essays
College Political Science
College World History
High School Writing
ISEE-Lower Level Mathematics Achievement
ISEE-Lower Level Quantitative Reasoning
ISEE-Lower Level Reading Comprehension
ISEE-Lower Level Verbal Reasoning
ISEE-Lower Level Writing
ISEE-Middle Level Mathematics Achievement
ISEE-Middle Level Quantitative Reasoning
ISEE-Middle Level Reading Comprehension
ISEE-Middle Level Verbal Reasoning
ISEE-Middle Level Writing
ISEE-Upper Level Mathematics Achievement
ISEE-Upper Level Verbal Reasoning
SAT Subject Tests Prep
What is your teaching philosophy?
My teaching philosophy is that no two individuals learn the same way, and should not be treated as such. I work with students to foster their own individual learning styles whenever possible, but my go-to strategy is to go through the logic of problems with the student and try to have them figure out as much as possible on their own while not being afraid to ask questions or for guidance.
What might you do in a typical first session with a student?
In the first session, I would aim to ask the student about what has worked with them in the past in other classes or how teachers have previously been effective with them. Building off of this information, I would try to develop the learning approach that would best emulate previous success. The main goals of the first session will always be to get to know how the student learns as well as try to break down a wall of misunderstanding on one small concept in order to instill confidence.
How can you help a student become an independent learner?
I am a big believer in logic-based learning. I'd ask the student at first to walk me through what they understand, but then once a roadblock appears, work with them to figure out the process to solve the problem. Once the first few problems have been walked through, I would aim to wean them off gradually, while still remaining a consistent resource. Over the course of multiple concepts, I hope to integrate this method of logic-based learning with the learning personality of the student so they can develop individual learning and studying styles that help them solve problems, while I still help out with new concepts.
How would you help a student stay motivated?
By setting small goals throughout the session, such as short breaks or a change to more enjoyable subjects once an assignment is completed. The long-term goal, however, would be to instill a sense of motivation in the student by means of newfound confidence in the material, as well as visualizing a more long-term goal.
If a student has difficulty learning a skill or concept, what would you do?
I would ask the student what they did understand because, that way, I can help hone in on the specific issue instead of giving an overly general survey. Once the areas of difficulty are made clear, we would work to instill the logic of the concept or the process of solving the problem. From that point, a few more repetitions with practice problems would be made in order to begin to solidify the concept.
What strategies have you found to be most successful when you start to work with a student?
The strategies I find most useful are identifying what students currently understand, incorporating techniques to appeal to students' individual learning personalities, and using a logic-based approach to answer questions.
How would you help a student get excited/engaged with a subject that they are struggling in?
By tying the material to their own personal circumstances or cultivating different approaches to learning material (i.e. applicable uses of geometry).
What techniques would you use to be sure that a student understands the material?
Asking the student to explain to me a concept or teach me the skill, essentially switching the roles. Also challenging the student with tying the material learned to either a previous concept or one that will be covered soon.
How do you build a student's confidence in a subject?
Slowly but surely. By making the material easy to digest and building mastery little by little. The second method is to help build problem-solving skills and strategies so that students can go into the subject matter with more confidence and a game plan.
How do you adapt your tutoring to the student's needs?
Through isolating the specific subject matter, as well as making accommodations for specific learning styles. Whether that is auditory vs. visual vs. kinetic learning or making accommodations for students' needs. Also, through getting to know the student's personality, I can tailor-make my tutoring approach to make my tutoring compatible with their personality and studying style.
What types of materials do you typically use during a tutoring session?
I tend to defer to regular textbooks or test preparation books, partially for explanations but mainly for practice problems. I further consult online resources to find more practice problems.