I am drawn to teaching and tutoring in the areas of writing and literature for several reasons. Both teach students to think critically and creatively. Literature challenges readers to bring their own experiences to their interpretations of literature. Like writing, however, there are restraints. Within literature, perception is based not only on the readers' experiences, but also on the author and the historical context the literature was created in.
Like literature, writing also challenges critical thinking and creativity within certain parameters. Creative writing can be wide open, or it can work within course developed parameters. Academic writing, however, works only when it is couched in predetermined structures, formats and forms of reasoning. Strong writers can function creatively within these parameters.
As I hope to work closely with you in the near future, I thought this would be a good opportunity to share with you what makes me qualified to teach this class. Professionally, I have held several positions over the past two decades, but I keep finding myself drawn to education, writing, and literature. I enjoy surrounding myself with learning, whether I am the one learning or you are. I have taught both high school and college English classes, coached both high school and college athletes, and written professionally as a freelance writer.
Academically, I decided to strike out on my own through education. On my journey, I took classes at: Western Illinois University, University of Wisconsin Stout, St. Cloud State University (twice), Saint Mary's University, and Walden University. From all of those institutions, I walked away with both bachelors and a masters degrees in English, and a gaggle of additional educational credits. With this education, I have been able to earn freedom, independence, and means to the lifestyle of my choice. Currently that lifestyle includes: spending time with family and friends, competing in triathlons, gardening, and of course, teaching!
I am excited about the possibility to work with you. My approach is to meet each learner where they are in their skills, and working from that point to improve upon whatever base the learner has. Learning should be challenging, positive, and tough but not threatening. I expect a lot from learners, but I also work hard to provide each learner with the tools to succeed.
As with any journey, it might look a little overwhelming at the beginning, but in the words of Bill Murray in "What About Bob"... "Baby Steps!"
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