Fontbonne University (Psychology)
Southern Illinois University Edwardsville (Master's)
From an early age, I felt that learning was a lifelong venture. I still challenge myself to learn new things about subjects that interest me every day, whether that involves science, technology, or even something as simple as woodworking. For me, it is not enough to love learning, however. It is my calling in life to share that passion, and to inspire others to seek new knowledge and skills.
I specialize in science, engineering, and technology, with special expertise in the areas of biology, physical science, experimental design, the engineering design process, the nature of science, all middle and elementary school subjects, and web design. I have led district-wide standards reform in science for a number of schools, and have worked as a STEM education outreach manager at a well-founded education research center. My career has largely focused on engagement of K-college students in STEM areas, but I have also taught at the high school and middle school levels. My experience as a scholastic-bowl coach has led me to encourage students to learn skills and information from every subject (history, language arts, math, etc.).
When I work with students, I prefer for the student and I to work together to set manageable goals, and participate in regular reflection and self-assessment of those goals. My lessons may end with a small amount of homework or independent practice to extend learning beyond the session, or even small tasks that encourage the student to explore something beyond what they currently feel comfortable with and/or communicate their learning to family members.
My passion for engaging science teaching and learning has led me to develop memorable hands-on lessons, mnemonics, and strategies for visualizing typically abstract concepts. If you are looking for your child to learn logic and mathematics including comparative operators, rates, ratios, fractions, and more, or if you simply wish for your child to develop a new hobby that can lead to a high-paying career in computer science, then I am experienced in teaching video game design through Game Maker Studio (intense coding) and Scratch (easy drag-and-drop coding). These platforms can be appropriate for anyone ages 10-18.
As of now, I am available from 10AM-9PM Monday-Friday for a rate of $25/hour online or $45/hour in-person. Hands-on lessons where I provide materials cost an additional $99. I can be available on the weekends from 12PM-4PM for an additional $5/hour (both online and in-person). Please contact me for more information!
I look forward to hearing from you and focusing on learning together! From an early age, I felt that learning was a lifelong venture. I still challenge myself to learn new things about subjects that interest me every day, whether that involves science, technology, or even something as simple as woodworking. For me, it is not enough to love learning, however.
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I first learned Photoshop in high school with the hope of becoming a graphic designer. Although I did not pursue that field in college, I maintained my Photoshop skills to make clever cards, mess with friends, and touch up photos. As a teacher, I started to use Photoshop to create and customize my own handouts and lab booklets and to keep class records by making collages and customized graphic data to represent the personality, defining qualities, and progress of each class. As a project manager, I used Photoshop to make posters, pictures, web graphics, email, and much more, and even designed the logo for a national organization.
I have always been interested in helping others, which led me to my previous position as an applied behavioral analysis para-professional. In my capacity as an ABA, I designed and implemented individualized behavior plans for children with autism between the ages of 3-18. My training included crisis prevention training and autism awareness, and enabled me to work both 1:1 and in groups with many students with autism to teach basic life skills, academic content and skills, and provide behavior intervention. This work took place in both school and home settings.
I have taught students from elementary age through high school the basics of computer science and mathematical applications through video game design, which involves the planning, artwork, and programming of a video game. I have accomplished this using Scratch and Game Maker Studios, both of which are free applications. Students worked through both online and in-person classes to develop skills from being a complete beginner to making a fully planned and executed game which could be shared with friends, family, or on the web. In addition to my Video Game Design class, I have taught students video game design and programming skills in an after school STEM Academy, which focused on skill-development and engagement using the previously mentioned software as well as Python, C#, and Unity. I have led teacher professional development workshops on game design and the use of games and programming in all subjects to acquire content, skills, or as an outlet for formative and summative project assessment.
Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) goes hand-in-hand with HTML. HTML provides the content for a website and a basic framework, but CSS is the styling that gives a website its look. I have gained certifications in HTML and CSS through full-stack web development courses, and have built websites for multiple non-profit organization websites. My experience for web design with CSS includes standard and responsive design to support a variety of interfaces and display sizes.
I taught computer courses to 5th-8th grade students, which explored the basics of hardware and software. Students learned to assemble a basic computer, install software, and learned about hardware/software by using a Raspberry Pi. Students also learned to use simple programming through Python and to interface using the command prompt. Finally, they learned about networks by developing simple networks with their raspberry Pi's and various routers.
In my personal life, I have mentored and tutored students at home in order to provide summer home schooling services in the areas of science, technology, engineering, mathematics, arts, and elective language arts (creative writing, writing in digital media). As a STEM Outreach Coordinator/Project manager with the Center for STEM Research, Education, and Outreach, I designed and provided home school groups with science instruction through hands-on learning experiences. I also provided these groups with instruction designed through the Project Lift-off After School Math Plus curricula, which engages students in active math learning through interactive and project-based lessons. In addition to traditional and inquiry-based learning experiences, I have worked with home school networks to coordinate teen leadership opportunities through a program called "Teen Science Cafes," where teens work with scientists to design community-oriented science events.
Four three years, I worked as a project manager at the Center for STEM Research, Education, and Outreach at SIUE. In this capacity, I managed more than twenty different projects, each of which was carried through the entire project life cycle. I have identified partners for, planned, implemented, evaluated, and communicated successful projects as part of this non-profit organization. Projects included teacher professional development, after-school programming focused on engagement, connecting scientists with students, camps, regional competitions, national communities of practice, volunteer training, pre-service teacher development, and much more.
As an outreach coordinator and project manager, I have successfully presented to large audiences at both regional and national conferences for education. In addition to my presentations, I managed a project called "Teen Science Cafes," which connects scientists with teen audiences. As a part of this, I developed training for scientists which taught them to limit their talk to 2-3 "big ideas" that would allow them to simply and clearly communicate their science. We also focused on a number of areas using a presentation survey tool, which were practiced in front of sample teen audiences prior to the cafe. In addition to learning about public speaking with general audiences, the scientists practiced and walked away with an interactive and sometimes hands-on activity that they could use to engage audiences. Many claimed to have used these activities and presentations again in the beyond the cafes with great success.
Teens used the same strategies as scientists to create their own presentations, which they practiced in front of peers and students from lower grades.
In addition to my experience training student and professional presenters and presenting at conferences, I taught a presentation elective course at Riverton Middle School which focused on creating clear and engaging presentations with and without digital media.
Being raised in a home with two religions made me curious about religion from a young age. I was raised in two private/perochial schools, where I studied two different religions until 8th grade. My minor in college was religious studies, which evaluated world religions, the history of religion, Christianity and Judaism as taught by professors who were also community spiritual leaders in their professed faiths, and the psychology of religion. As a part of this minor, I explored a multitude of religions, both current and historical, through in-depth research and location-based case studies. I conducted correlative studies in the St. Louis area regarding the alignment of faith (any faith) to self-actualization as defined by leading psychologists.
As a teacher, I regularly worked study skills into every class, teaching winning strategies for reading, identifying important information, memorization, relating unfamiliar information to prior knowledge, and test preparation. I led after-school study groups and coached a Scholastic Bowl team to victory using these strategies. I have also worked at school and in homes with children identified with ADD/ADHD and learning disabilities performing after-school studying and tutoring in groups and 1:1.