I am a teacher from Pennsylvania currently on maternity leave and am looking for a way to still help students. I specialize in helping with college admissions essays, Spanish (any level) and helping with writing in general. I have a Bachelors Degree in Secondary Education-Spanish and a Writing Specialist Certification. I am also a National Writing Fellow. I look forward to working with you and helping you to be successful in your classes.
Education & Certification
Undergraduate Degree: Kutztown University of Pennsylvania - Bachelors, Secondary Ed Spanish
Reading, spending time with family, crocheting, foreign cultures, going to museums, watching fun shows on Netflix, but mostly I love to read!
Elementary School Reading
Elementary School Writing
High School English
High School Level American Literature
High School Writing
Middle School Reading
Middle School Reading Comprehension
Middle School Writing
What is your teaching philosophy?
I believe that all students can learn, no matter what. Each student has their own way of learning, so it is up to the instructor to identify how to best serve his or her students.
What might you do in a typical first session with a student?
In my first session, I will spend some time getting to know the student by asking questions to learn more about how I can best help them be successful. I also like to know favorite hobbies and anything else the student is comfortable sharing so I can tailor my tutoring sessions for that specific student.
How can you help a student become an independent learner?
Some ways I can help a student become an independent learner are through the gradual release model. If a student is struggling enough with a subject that they are seeking tutoring, it's not fair to expect that they can do all practice problems on their own. I would demonstrate how to do a task, we would do one example together, and then I would have the student complete an example on their own.
How would you help a student stay motivated?
Motivation can be difficult for students who are struggling. Often, external motivators don't work, so I would work with the student to find out what does motivate him or her. Then, I would find ways to use those things in our sessions to help them stay motivated. Maybe for one student, if they bring their grades up, they will be allowed to get a license. I would keep reminding them of all the exciting things they can do when they can drive to keep them motivated to work hard. Oftentimes, it's just a matter of celebrating the small successes to keep a student motivated in an area in which they struggle.
If a student has difficulty learning a skill or concept, what would you do?
Practice makes perfect! We would work on the skill or concept by approaching it in several different ways. There's never only one way to learn something, so we would work together to find out what works best for the student.
How do you help students who are struggling with reading comprehension?
I would help students with reading comprehension by asking a lot of questions. I would start out with more simplistic questions to help the student gain confidence, and then we would go into the analysis. We would do it through conversation so that it doesn't feel like I am firing test questions at them. Then I would give the student a passage to practice comprehending on their own.
What strategies have you found to be most successful when you start to work with a student?
Getting to know a student is always the most important thing you can do. Students learn better from people who care about them and their success. Once you get to know a student, you are able to understand how to work with them on a more personal level. This helps students to feel more confident and comfortable. Some strategies that work after that include conversation, working together and lots of encouragement.
How would you help a student get excited/engaged with a subject that they are struggling in?
This can be challenging, because most of my previous students struggle to get excited when they are having a hard time with something. I think it boils down to breaking the information down and encouraging the student whenever possible to show them that they have the capability to succeed. I also think making the information relevant to the student can go a long way, which is why it is important to get to know the student.
What techniques would you use to be sure that a student understands the material?
In order to make sure the student understands the material, I would use a variety of formative assessments, including asking questions, having them show me with an example, drawing a picture, etc. It's easy to tell whether or not a student understands something well by asking them about the material. Some students would prefer to demonstrate their knowledge on a test, so I could create a mini-test/quiz to have them show me how well they understand the information.
How do you build a student's confidence in a subject?
I build a student's confidence by showing them what they are doing right. Even if a student struggles, they usually still succeed in other areas. Maybe the student did really well on one of the examples, and I would use that to show them that they are learning and succeeding.
How do you evaluate a student's needs?
The easiest way to evaluate a student's needs is to do some form of a 'pre-test.' In order to see what a student struggles with, I need to see how they approach learning and thinking. This can be done verbally or with paper and pencil.
How do you adapt your tutoring to the student's needs?
Adaptation depends on the student. Because I have been a teacher in a classroom, I have learned how to help each individual student however they need to be helped. It all comes down to knowing your students and having an arsenal of strategies to choose from.
What types of materials do you typically use during a tutoring session?
I would use whatever helps the student learn. It depends on the subject matter-if I am tutoring Spanish, I would use real-life objects to help my students understand the language. If I am tutoring English, I would use "mentor texts" to help students see how their assignment can be done best, and then we would work up to that.