I am an educator with 20+ years of experience and specialize in tutoring students in language
arts, including reading
, and spelling
, as well as in elementary math
. I have training as a literacy intervention specialist and currently tutor students who are struggling to learn to read. Additionally, I also teach elementary math
and writing to both children and adults. For the past several years I have also taught Adult Education courses at Richland Community College; my expertise is in working with adult students who struggle with math and reading foundations. I love working one-on-one with students and and have seen exciting progress in students with whom I have worked.
Early in my career, I got my Ph.D. in psychology
and taught psychology at the college level. I soon realized that although I enjoy teaching psychology, even more, I enjoy teaching the skills that allow students to become excellent students and communicators: writing, research, and if needed, reading and spelling. I also had the opportunity to teach an inter-disciplinary writing course to first-year college students for about a decade, and this further fed my love of helping students become proficient writers and communicators.
When my children were young, 15+ years ago, I left college teaching to homeschool
my children. Being able to work one on one with my students, and teaching to meet their individual needs, was very satisfying to me. Those years of homeschooling allowed me to unleash the creativity in teaching which is so natural when working with either small groups of students or with individual students. As homeschoolers often do, we participated in numerous co-ops with other homeschooling families, and I did a lot of teaching in those co-ops as well. Along the way, I had a lot of fun helping my students learn to read, write and spell, as well as understand and solve math problems, and got invaluable experience working with students who respond best to individualized instruction.
Now my children are all in public school or college, and so I am again able to teach others. Even though I consider myself primarily a language arts
instructor and coach, I have more recently found math tutoring to also be very enjoyable.
Since students' learning styles and ways of learning vary a great deal, many different approaches and tools can be useful. When teaching reading and spelling, I find that using techniques which incorporate visual, auditory and sensory/hands-on learning work best for many learners. Struggling readers and spellers, including those who are dyslexic, need very specific and detailed instruction, and I am trained to teach reading and spelling to such students using multi-sensory techniques. Whenever possible, I also like to use games as a learning tool. When teaching writing, I start out having students work with models of writing rather than start from scratch since getting started is often the hardest aspect of writing. There are many oral tasks which use the same cognitive skills as writing, but are frequently more enjoyable for students than writing, so I freely utilize such learning tools too. I prefer hands-on math and games, but will also use written work once the student understands a concept. Please tab to the "Subject" tab on this website for more detail about my approach to each of the subjects I am qualified to teach.
My goal as a tutor is to meet students where they are in their learning and to help them get to where they want or need to be. Often this means I have to find or create new tools to meet individual needs that don't respond to the tools I already have in my toolbox. Frequently, this means that I help the student find relevance within their own experience for the skills they are working on; one of the most frustrating things for struggling students is to be required to learn skills that seem irrelevant. I love helping such students find relevance within their own world of experiences. Meeting my students where they are in their skill-building, finding the tools that work best for them, and helping them discover the relevance these learning tasks have for their own lives is my greatest delight as a tutor. This is when the "light bulbs" go on and learning becomes enjoyable!