Tutor Spotlight: Jennie T

Name: Jennie T

Educational Areas of Focus: English Language Arts and Humanities

Educational Background: As an undergraduate at the University of Michigan, I double-majored in English and Psychology. After earning my BA, I decided I wanted to be an educator. I earned my M.S.Ed. at Northwestern University with a concentration in Secondary English Education. 

What is your teaching philosophy? I believe that as an educator and a tutor, my job is to help students remove roadblocks that are impeding their ability to achieve their full potential. Sometimes these have to do with content and concepts, and removing the roadblock is as simple as finding a new way for students to see what they are learning. Other times is has more to do with building confidence so that students see they have the ability to knock down the roadblocks themselves. 

When you're not working with kids, what do you like to do? When I'm not working with kids in an educational setting, I'm often being kept on my toes by my own kids! When they decide to take it easy on me, I like to watch sports with them as well as my husband, read, try new restaurants, and workout. 

Who was your favorite teacher and why? My favorite teacher was my 9th grade English teacher, Mr. McBride. He had (and still has!) an enthusiasm for literature and learning that was infectious and inspiring. He was the first teacher who taught me how to "unlock" and unpack all the different levels of meaning in the stories and plays we read in his class. He is also a genuinely kind, compassionate, and warm person, and made learning fun. As a side note, I was fortunate enough to student teach at my high school, and he was the English department chair, so I had the pleasure of knowing him as a teacher as well as a colleague. 

What do you enjoy about tutoring? I love seeing the metaphorical light bulb go off when I'm working with students. Working with students one-on-one, we have a unique opportunity to see these light bulb moments often. I also enjoy that as their tutor, students naturally see me as their ally. It's easy to form a relationship where they see that their success is our shared goal.