I'm an innovative Reading
, and Math
tutor with a red "basket" (bag) of Reading goodies, a Careful Reading and Creative Writing Hood, a Math-odology for capturing wolves with Math-ive [massive] jaws, and a predictable rescuer of "Grammar
." While my bag and my hood may be "red," it is my lessons which are "read."
I am Mrs. "Poindexter" Esther. Students call me simply "Mrs. Esther" or "Mrs. H." Yes, I am a poindexter of sorts; however, I am a caring, capable, and dependable one, whose chief goal in tutoring these subjects is your child's learning success.
I have taught students successfully in these subjects from 1st grade
through 8th grade. I have taught grade-level material to my students as well as advanced-level activities for students with gifts in either subject, and I have also made use of unconventional tools or helps for those with learning disabilities. Additionally, I find that an individual student's primary learning style - auditory, visual, or kinesthetic style - is important to establish right away when beginning to teach them in a subject. (The kinesthetic learning style refers to hands-on learning.)
My goals for the first and second sessions will be to discover basic information from parents and students, as follows:
1. Current school, and curriculum in use there,
2. Current academic standing,
3. Recent academic improvements and challenges,
4. Student primary/secondary learning styles,
5. Student goals and parent goals for tutoring in subject,
6. Problems requiring attention, prioritized,
7. Gifts or learning disability, if any, and
8. Student personality and interests.
The reason I ask about personality and interests is to discover on what levels the student will likely connect with the subject, in order to maximize both learning and retention through student-specific motivation techniques, thereby also training the student towards effectively motivating himself or herself.
It is also possible - only if necessary - that I might ask for a general idea of the student's background and living environment, if it seems crucial towards providing the student with the best academic assistance possible in the subject to be tutored. If so, I would be certain to explain clearly my reasoning for requesting this information. I will adjust accordingly and be diligent to do my best tutoring with what information that I do have. I will seek to communicate any recommended changes in goals or methods to the parents, and also to the student if he/she is old enough to understand, so that we are all continuing on that "same page."
As to my methods in tutoring Reading, I tailor my approach to the student's individual reading needs. Previously, I have successfully tutored students exhibiting primarily visual and kinesthetic learning styles. I have successfully addressed also the challenge of Dyslexia
, beginning with context of words and whole word recognition to contribute to more fluent reading and increase confidence in reading comprehension. As fluency and comprehension start to increase, I can better teach the breaking down of words into their phonetic and alphabetic parts.
As to my methods in tutoring Math, I begin with solving a problem on paper, follow up by reviewing the student's approach used and noting good as well as improvable aspects of the solution process he uses. For the auditory learner, I more likely would talk through the student's solving method and highlight words in the instructions that the student might need to pay more attention to. As to the visual learner, I would probably show him what the format of the solution needs to look like, maybe along with a generic format that he could memorize in order to "picture" when working a problem. The kinesthetic learner "connects" well with the hands-on tool found in often in public and school libraries: the abacus. The abacus, originating with the ancient Chinese
, is a "calculator" with lined-up beads attached to a frame or base. The abacus immensely helped one 3rd grade
kinesthetic learner of mine when I taught the gifted program, such that he went from complete frustration with all 4 basic operations (+, -, *, and /) to confidently demonstrating the "/" (division) operation by abacus in front of his peers.
As to my methods in tutoring Writing, some students with handwriting difficulty, spelling
, or "writer's block" are in fact magnificent story-tellers who feel more "at home" communicating verbally rather than on paper. Therefore, I may use verbal story-telling with them as a "springboard" to get them past the hurdle of that pesky pen-on-paper problem.
I also, as the previous sentence demonstrates, have a propensity for periodically and purposefully punctuating lessons playfully with poetic device. A "spoonful of sugar" approach such as that often helps! But, with any student, positive reinforcement through praise for their achievements and improvements is essential.
At times, the student may be experiencing more than one difficulty with the subject. Addressing one issue at a time is, I believe, the best approach, so that the student does not become confused or overwhelmed. A lot of patience and many, many "baby steps" can do wonders to get the job done.
Finally, I will simply say "thank you" for your time and consideration of me as your potential tutor. I look forward to meeting and working with you soon!