We are so proud of our amazing team and would like to spotlight one tutor each month to share more about them. This month we are featuring Kerrliee Wing.
Areas of Focus:
Most of my thirteen years in the classroom have been in elementary and middle school grades. I have supported students in Spalding phonics for the past three years and I love working with my middle school students in lit/comp, grammar, and sentence diagramming! As a special educator, I enjoy helping students to develop strategies in the areas of executive functioning, task completion, and handwriting. My favorite grade levels to teach math are fourth and fifth, where we focus on fractions, geometry, and pre-algebra concepts.
I received a Bachelor of Fine Arts from a liberal arts college, with a focus on multi-media visual art. My teaching certification is in the area of Cross-Categorical Special Education, and I hold a Master's of Education in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages. This is my thirteenth year of teaching and I've served students in private, specialized schools, large, public schools, and charter schools.
What is your teaching philosophy?
I am privileged to teach. I am ever grateful to the parents who entrust the development of their children's minds and skills to my care, even in the smallest way or for the shortest period of time. Teaching is a joy, firstly because of the incredible children with whom I work, and secondly because there is constantly more to learn. As teachers, we can explore content, strategies, and research and always learn something new--and then we get to pass along what we're excited about to spark the interest of a young person. What could be more delightful than to guide a child to a new discovery or to a new level of success, and to watch her grow in understanding and curiosity? No matter what skills or ability a child possesses, there is something that he has not learned yet. A sense of wonder is the best teaching tool I know. It assures each child that it isn't a matter of what he can't do but merely a matter of what he hasn't mastered yet.
It is a shameful thing to be weary of inquiry when what we search for is excellent. --Marcus Tillius Cicero
When you're not working with kids, what do you like to do?
Walking with my dogs is my every-day relaxation; for special days we go hiking near our house. I read cookbooks like novels and love experimenting by almost following recipes. The Art Institute in Chicago is my favorite museum, although I'm always open for a new art or live music experience, or a lecture on some topic that is novel to me. I have to read classics and philosophy on a regular basis, just to keep up with the kids I serve!
Who was your favorite teacher and why?
I loved my teachers, from Kindergarten through art school. The memory of my second grade teacher, Mrs. Benwire, and how she nurtured my love for reading still brings tears to my eyes. I read every book in her classroom! In high school, Mr. Combs invited me to his advanced English class, where we had to journal every day and were required to produce something "real" that we sent out into the world in some manner. He brought us books from the college library because our school was so small that we had limited resources. He also taught me grammar, even though I didn't notice he was doing it.
What do you enjoy about tutoring?
The time I get to spend working individually with students brings me great joy. Getting to know a child and her needs, and then witnessing real growth is immensely rewarding. I love getting reports that a child has improved her spelling scores, or seeing her suddenly grasp a concept that was challenging. Perhaps my favorite part of tutoring is seeing a young person talk himself through a strategy or a process that we've practiced and then look to me with pride at performing a task independently. Finally, my life has been enriched by partnerships with families who seek excellence for their children and generously include me in that pursuit.