I think learning should be fun and easy. I strive to find ways to make that the case for each student individually. I am a very easy-going and laid back person. I am also a big time nerd! I love to watch TED talks and TAM meetings about physics discoveries and our universe. I get excited when one of my friends needs help with their college level physics or math as I feel like I can ease their anxieties and help them to get through the material. Most of all, I am very motivated. If one of my students is not understanding a subject, and my approach is not as helpful as I would like, I try to think of new ways to approach the problem or present the solution in order to make it click for the student.
I started tutoring when I was in college working for an on-campus service which provides private and small group tutoring. I also worked shifts a room called "The Math Lab" where students could go to get extra help with math or with science for free. This was a large group setting where I would sometimes work examples in front of a dozen students at one time, or I would go around to different tables and work problems for individuals. I also provided calculator tutorials for TI-87 and TI-89 calculators so students could be prepared for their homework and exams.
I think a great way to describe my teaching style is with an example of one of my role models; Margaret Lang, a Professor at Humboldt State University. Dr. Lang was my fluid mechanics and applied hydraulics instructor when I was in college. Margaret is very organized and always comes to class prepared with lessons which she has prepared on note paper. Although there are times which it seems she has delivered the same lecture many times before, she never seems bored or tired by her lessons. Her enthusiasm translates to students and encourages them to also be passionate about the material. She is one of those people who is obviously very smart, thinks about what she says before she says it, and cannot be stumped by any questions which students have. We would sometimes do extra research about upcoming material in an attempt to be ready to ask questions which she would have trouble answering, but she could never be stumped! Also, we realized that she was causing us, indirectly, to learn outside of class on our own! I think that is a powerful thing, to have students motivated to learn about the material on their own and outside of lectures.
back to top