I have over 13 years experience working with students from kindergarten to 8th grade as an assistant teacher, reading and math intervention specialist, and private tutor. I've heard kids say, "I hate to read" or "I'm not good at math" countless times. What I've found is what they really hate is being confused and frustrated. They hate feeling like everyone else in their class can do what they find difficult. I help kids overcome these obstacles every day. Students look forward to working with me because I do not judge them or label them and because we have fun.
Children need foundational skills to be good readers. I believe children must have letter-sound recognition and be able to break apart and put together the sounds that make up words. Mastery of these skills builds fluency and comprehension.
I help children build their vocabularies so that they can get more meaning out of what they're reading. We study words to increase their success in spelling and reduce the need to memorize spelling lists.
I approach math in a similar way, believing that foundational skills are essential. Students need to have number sense and know basic facts before they can tackle more advanced math topics. They have to understand what a word problem is asking before they can figure out how to solve the problem.
I use audio and visual cues and movement to meet different learning styles. We play games to reinforce skills. But the most important thing I teach students are strategies they can use when they are stumped. I want them to have confidence in their abilities and know what to do when they are working on their own in the classroom or at home.
Catholic University of America