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I have a tremendous command of my content area subject matter, employ content and high expectations of positive citizenship, and am a resourceful student advocate—ready, willing and able to relate my subject matter to any and all students’ needs, aptitudes and potential life-path choices. What I bring to the tutoring sessions is a love for language, a genuine caring for the students and for nurturing their academic development, and an incredible ability to build a climate of respect, validation and positive expectation that directly impacts student success.
These past 15 years in the classroom have taught me that the best way to plan a lesson is to work backwards from the standard related to the lesson, decide what it is exactly I want students to learn, and go from there; certainly keeping the lessons student-centered (the designs of which are always predicated upon my prior knowledge of the students, their assessment-driven data, as well as reliable professional observations) is always of paramount importance. In driving my tutorial instruction of the student, I would use the results our interview to produce assessment-driven instructional strategies and to create a collaborative framework of diverse and multiple approaches to student learning that would take into account a learners’ primary language, educational and geographical background, various cultures, student's individual multiple intelligences (i.e., Gardner’s), health and family situations and personal interests and abilities.
Following initial primary language surveys, formal English language learning development assessments, anecdotal background information, student-family interviews, the latest and/or last year’s test scores, etc. to inform we teachers with an accurate portrait of the students strengths and weaknesses—it cannot be overemphasized that student performance assessment must be the single-most influential force driving our team’s instruction, with attention given to data that addresses the specific needs of each learner. If, for example, a student perform poorly on a specific ELA Standard, we can see that reflected in the test scores & know we need to frontload that concept in our re-teaching of it before the student's next assessment rolls around.
As an advocate for the student, I believe in empowering each one of them to become their own best resource, and—by modeling for students that they are in-fact responsible for their own learning—I am hopefully modeling that aesthetic which is most ennobling about the teaching profession: That all that is is a “teacher.”
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