I have been a middle school teacher for the last 12 years. I love working with students this age - they are funny and can make interesting connections to the concepts I teach. They also keep me feeling young and on the tips of my toes! I also enjoy working with students of all ages in a variety of subjects.
In my spare time, I read and quilt. My grandmother was a quilter as is my mother. I find it very relaxing, even though I get frustrated sometimes when the corners don't match!! I also love to watch soccer, basketball, and baseball. I have been a Cubs fan since I was young, but now that they've won the World Series, I can devote myself to my hometown team, the Washington Nationals!!
Education & Certification
Undergraduate Degree: The Texas AM University System Office - Bachelors, Political Science and Government
Graduate Degree: Northeastern State University - Masters, Science Education
Aside from reading, which I love to do when I get the chance, I enjoy quilting and sports. I am a huge Washington Nationals fan and also enjoy watching soccer and basketball.
Q & A
What is your teaching philosophy?
Every student can learn. It just takes finding that style that the student learns best in and teaching to that style.
How can you help a student become an independent learner?
I can help by encouraging the student to think about the problem in steps and asking guided questions back to the student instead of directly answering the question. Teaching the student how to find the information or what questions to ask allows the student to become independent.
If a student has difficulty learning a skill or concept, what would you do?
I would, and do, find alternative approaches to teaching the skill/concept. If verbal explanation doesn't work - and many students today are not auditory learners - visuals, videos, or hands-on activities usually help. And lots of analogies.
How would you help a student get excited/engaged with a subject that they are struggling in?
Chunking new and review instruction into small pieces, and allowing the student to get a sense of accomplishment, always helps a student feel more engaged.
What techniques would you use to be sure that a student understands the material?
Asking questions and having the student explain the material back to me. I would also use the student's strengths to help - if a student is great at drawing, I would have them illustrate the concept, for example.
How do you build a student's confidence in a subject?
I build a student's confidence by giving them opportunities to demonstrate what they have learned.
What might you do in a typical first session with a student?
In the first session, I want to find out where the student needs help and what I can do to help. I want to find out what their learning style is, and make some personal connections about hobbies and interests so I can better motivate them to learn.