Hello! Thank you for visiting my profile page! My name is Ellsworth and I would LOVE to help you overcome any difficulties you may be facing with math or related subjects.
First of all, who better to learn math from than … an actual math teacher? That’s right! I taught high school math for the last eight (8) years. Here’s a quick read of my qualifications:
•Bachelor’s degree in Electrical Engineering (from MIT!)
•Master’s degree in Computer Science
•Eight years of high school classroom math teaching experience in TWO states (Texas and California)
•Currently certified to teach math in Texas
•Extensive prior tutoring (math) experience both as a school teacher and with tutoring firms
•Prior college teaching experience in various math courses
WHAT CAN YOU HELP ME WITH?
Probably just about any math area you’re likely to face in high school or college. This includes, but is not limited to:
(* = “I’ve taught this class at least once, in an actual school classroom, with real live students!”)
Also, I can help you prepare for tests:
•SAT (especially math!)
•ACT (especially math!)
•GRE (especially… well, you get the idea…)
I also like to do what I call “math literacy”, which is basically everyday math that most schools have now abandoned because it’s not a college-prep course. I think this is a terrible mistake! I’m talking about general math skills that you encounter in daily life, like scaling up a recipe to make multiple batches of cookies, calculating how much that sale discount takes off the price of a sweater, or how to (fairly) split up the cost of a meal with friends (including tax!).
If you need something not on this list, just ask. I’ll give you some information and/or point you in the right direction.
SO, HOW DO WORK WITH STUDENTS TO KNOW WHAT THEY NEED?
Well, there are at least three approaches, and I use one or more depending on the situation:
1) Interview the student and family to get a sense of strengths and areas for improvement
2) Perform a general assessment (that’s teacher-speak for “give a test”) to spot trouble areas. I made my own Algebra skills test just for this purpose!
3) Ask them if there is some area they are specifically having trouble with (e.g. word problems, solving quadratic equations, reducing rational expressions…)
GREAT. SO THEN WHAT?
Based on what we find, we develop customized tutoring plans. I recommend several possible courses of tutoring, the same way a doctor writes you a prescription when you’re sick. The difference here, though, is I can give you a range of options to consider, depending on the results you want to achieve and the time frame in which you want them.
Using your preferences and requirements, we can fine-tune a plan to fit your budget and schedule.
WHAT’S YOUR TEACHING STYLE LIKE?
I have developed an approach that I call “I do / we do / you do”:
•I Do: I explain and demonstrate the concept by solving sample problems
•We Do: We do a couple more problems, but I put more of the load on your shoulders
•You Do: Still more problems which I let you work completely on your own while I watch
In this way, you are assured that you can do the problems because… well, you just did them! If you run into trouble we can repeat the above process, or, alternatively, step back and work on a supporting concept.
HOW DO I KNOW WE’LL ALL GET ALONG? I DON’T WANNA RISK MONEY TO FIND OUT…
Well, you can certainly “try before you buy”! The first session is free, where we discuss your needs and maybe do a little light problem-solving to see how things go. That way everyone can assess their comfort level and act accordingly.
SOUNDS WONDERFUL! WHAT DO I DO NOW?
You can send me an e-mail with specific questions that you may have. Or you can just contact the folks at Wyzant to help you set something up. Either way, we can start the process of getting you the help you need.
ANY LAST WORDS?
Math is hard for people for many different reasons. Perhaps it’s because it wasn’t taught well the first time. Maybe you just weren’t ready to receive the information, or connections weren’t made between one math topic and another.
Whatever the cause, it’s 100% fixable, but with a catch: you have to BE WILLING TO DO THE WORK to become proficient. No one who has seriously applied themselves has ever failed my math class, and, conversely, the single leading cause of failure is “not doing the work”.
So if you’re looking to improve your math proficiency, come with the right attitude. I LOVE TEACHING MATH, and nothing gives me more satisfaction than helping a deserving student succeed where they struggled before, demonstrating first-hand that doing well in math IS possible if you put in the effort.
I’m ready to start our math adventure. Are you?
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