I am dedicated to helping students understand not only the material of their subjects but strategies for answering questions of all types. I find it extremely helpful and important for the success of a student to focus on the intricacies of test taking or writing, such as proper use of the process of elimination with multiple choice questions, deep understanding of question syntax, and ways to formulate written answers, essays and papers that emphasize what the student knows and minimizes what the student doesn't know or isn't relevant to the subject at hand. I also facilitate a student's meaningful absorption of the material in the following ways: verbal expression of both the student's and my own thought processes, repetition of (novel) questions in areas that are difficult for the student and the monitoring of progress through correctly answered questions and the student's ability to explain why certain answers, thought processes or writing methods are either correct or incorrect. Finally, I possess great patience with students of all ages and hope to make the tutoring experience as smooth and as helpful as possible for them!
Education & Certification
Undergraduate Degree: Northwestern University - Current Undergrad, Cognitive Science
ACT Composite: 32
ACT English: 33
ACT Reading: 34
ACT Science: 32
reading mystery novels, writing, sketching, running
Q & A
What is your teaching philosophy?
My teaching philosophy is to not only help the student with subjects but to help the student help themselves when they get stuck on something during school or otherwise outside of a tutoring session.
What might you do in a typical first session with a student?
Get to know them as a person, as well as their preferred style of learning, and what things their teachers do or say that help their understanding and what they say or do that that doesn't help their understanding of a lesson.
How can you help a student become an independent learner?
By teaching unique strategies for reading and writing material based off of the subject at hand. For instance, strategies when reading and understanding a textbook differ greatly than strategies for reading and understanding scientific papers or essays.
How would you help a student stay motivated?
By allowing them to also monitor their progress. I find it helps students when they actually get to see how they improve themselves, rather than just looking at test scores for indication of improvement. This is because there are much more important indicators of improvement that can be much more motivating - such as seeing how the ease of reading and comprehending material increases, seeing how the efficiency of studying increases in order to conserve time and effort, and more.
How would you help a student get excited/engaged with a subject that they are struggling in?
I would help relate the subject to their own lives or interests. This strategy even helps me today. It is helpful to relate words and concepts to salient people, things, or events in one's life. If this doesn't work for a particular student, it is also helpful to find one or two things about the subject that the student DOES enjoy or have success with, and relate it to the parts of the subject that they don't particularly enjoy or that they are struggling with. This fosters self-confidence and interest, as well as the ability to make connections within the material that eventually may lead to a new strategy the student can employ in many circumstances.
What techniques would you use to be sure that a student understands the material?
I like to have the student verbally explain their thought process as to how they came up with a correct answer, and to identify and explain some answers and thought processes that are incorrect and why they should not be utilized. This shows me that they not only know why the answer or conclusion they came to is correct, but why other answers or conclusions would not be correct. This ensures that with future, novel material within the subject, they will better understand what strategies and methods that should and should not be utilized while exploring the material or answering questions about it.
How do you help students who are struggling with reading comprehension?
I suggest that they summarize each sentence as they read. If they find that they cannot summarize what they just read themselves, it instills awareness in them that they need to either re-read the sentence or slow down. If they can successfully summarize what they just read, it solidifies memorization of the passage, because they have not only read the sentence but have rehearsed it by summarizing it. Most of all, though, they will most likely remember what they put into their own words rather than trying to remember the exact words of the passage, which is much more difficult.