I am Joe and my teaching credentials include a BA and MS in Mathematics, an MBA and 24/30 credits for an MA in Education. In addition, I have one year of community college and 10 years of high school teaching experience. My active and valid Illinois teaching certificate has endorsements for Mathematics and Economics at the high school level. This certificate also has Middle School endorsements for Mathematics, Business, Marketing, Management, Language Arts, and Social Studies. Prior to teaching, I worked for one of finest R&D organizations in the world – Bell Laboratories for 36 years.
I have taught Geometry, Algebra II, Algebra II Honors, and Economics. While teaching full time, I volunteered two prep periods a week to tutor students who were having difficulties in Math. These students spanned Algebra I thru Pre-Calculus and College Algebra.
My approach to tutoring is based on the “Discovery Based” learning method. This method incorporates the four logical steps of analysis, synthesis, verbal structuring and lastly mathematical/algebraic modeling. The first step is to have the student talk about the section or topic with which they are having difficulty. Next I review the material that is not clearly understood and with the student’s help, identify those concepts that require additional attention. Using problems from the student’s text, initially homework problems or example problems, we jointly analyze the problem to identify to obtain all of the givens and identify what the problem is asking them to do. We then begin to use this information along their existing base of learning to form a method of solution (synthesize). This solution method is then structured as a verbal model (e.g. sequential block diagram). The last step is then to rewrite the verbal model as an equation or proof or whatever mathematical structure fits the particular problem and solve.
The final step is to present the student with a similar problem and let them work their way through the problem with as little coaching as necessary, in order to reinforce the learning’s of the lesson.
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