Some of the major passions in my life are education, travel, and teaching. Basically, I like to use learning in order to have fun (or vice versa).
I've been working with children and young adults for the majority of my career in various capacities including but not limited to youth groups, music camp, babysitting, tutoring, and teaching. I thoroughly enjoy helping others reach that "lightbulb" moment where they go from struggling with an idea to suddenly making the connection, and I understand how to use patience, empathy, determination, and my broad foundation of experience and knowledge to help students in all walks of life get wherever they are trying to go in their academic endeavors.
Aside from having a Bachelor of Art's degree and a California Single Subject Teaching Credential (both in French), I have had many valuable opportunities both individually and with others to learn about this amazing world in many different contexts and modes. I spent the majority of my childhood camping, hiking, and exploring the great outdoors with my family as well as participating in numerous youth and music groups. As I got older I realized how much I enjoyed learning both in and out of the classroom, and I spent the majority of my free time during my college years travelling extensively in Europe and the United States in order to feed that passion. I have been fortunate to have traveled around most of the countries in western Europe, including having lived in Paris, France and outside of Lausanne, Switzerland. I also spent a summer in the United States on a cross-country road trip in order to better get to know my own homeland after having traveled outside of it so often. In every experience I was able to appreciate how much each of us can gain from moving out of our comfort zones and embracing new ideas and perspectives. Academics are a valuable and necessary foundation, and when combined with real-life experience, the educational opportunities are tremendous.
My passion for teaching and tutoring came about while I was still in school. Although I was a fast learner and an avid student, I became frustrated with teachers who skimmed over lessons and didn't give students sufficient information or clarification to understand the subjects being taught. Not only did I spend a good portion of class time coaching other students and asking teachers relevant or obvious questions to demonstrate that not everyone understood concepts yet, but outside of class I found myself encouraging and tutoring my siblings when they struggled. They were frequently intimidated by not understanding what they were learning, and instead of being supported in the classroom, their teachers seemed not to consider their learning styles or needs in order to help them succeed academically. I considered it unfair that educators so frequently focused their attentions on the brighter students instead of on the ones who needed their guidance the most. Although it is the student's job to learn, it is the teacher's job to provide the tools and resources to help students understand the skills they possess and what they will need to strengthen in order to succeed. Learning begins only after one knows how to learn.
Because of this, I like to encourage students to develop their learning and study habits based on their own needs, and I try to help them get there in whatever ways they need. Whether they need a coach, an information resource, and study buddy, or just someone to hold them accountable, I like to synthesize the abilities they already have with the tools I can provide for them to create a sense of teamwork, where my success is in their positive educational development.
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