Name: Amy S

Areas of Focus: 
I specialize in the humanities, especially history and English at the middle school and high school levels.  I also offer support in reading and writing, research, organization, general homework and study skills.

Educational Background: 
I earned a B.A. degree in History with an emphasis in Political Science from the University of Kansas in 2005. In 2009, I received my M. Ed. degree in Secondary Education, Curriculum and Instruction from Arizona State University.  

What is your teaching philosophy? 
My teaching philosophy is striving to ensure that my interaction with students is based on mutual respect. I believe that it is important as a teacher and as a tutor to listen and genuinely promote a supportive atmosphere for students to learn. Additionally, I think it’s important to think like a student and to suit my lesson or tutoring session in a way that meets the needs of the individual student. And finally, by acting as a guide, I allow students to find the answer themselves or talk through the topic to authentically develop knowledge.

When you're not working with kids, what do you like to do? 
I spend most of my free time with my funny, sweet and talkative 2-year-old and my awesome husband. We love to travel and plan adventures, which always includes a serious amount of research to find the best food, coffee and activities. We have family and friends in the Midwest, Brooklyn and Germany, so I enjoy planning our next trip to see them or keeping in touch via Skype or on the phone. I also love being active outside hiking, running, playing ultimate frisbee or doing new and creative activities with my daughter.

Who was your favorite teacher and why? 
My favorite high school teacher was Mr. Girsch, who taught U.S. History. He treated all of his students with respect; as a student, it was always obvious that Mr. Girsch loved teaching and he was passionate about his subject. His classroom was enthusiastic and engaging, mainly because he allowed his students to be a part of the learning process. He also led a trip to Washington D.C. called Close Up that I participated in my junior year. It was an eye-opening experience and it definitely influenced my future decision to become a history major and finally to become a teacher.

What do you enjoy about tutoring? 
I enjoy the one-on-one aspect of tutoring and really focusing my attention on a student’s individual needs. As a tutor, I find that it’s important to be a positive academic influence for the student – I don’t give them a grade, so instead we get to focus on areas of improvement and personal academic growth outside of a sometimes stressful classroom environment.