Sam Dresser's Math Tutoring
I really want my students to learn the ideas behind the math. I think that a lot of students get into a mode where they are trying to just memorize the rules without really understanding what all is actually happening on a real concrete level. In my expsrience this leads students into feeling frustrated and stranded in this ocean of strange symbols and Greek letters.
Furthermore, this can cause students to lose confidence in their abilities, which only winds up making them feel more and more lost and frustrated.
What I want for my students is to help them get to the place where they understand what is actually happening with each problem on a concrete level, and they are confident in that ability. I believe that if anyone understands the real meaning of what's going on, and they understand the mindset of how to attack a problem, then not only will good grades begin to flow naturally, but they will also begin excelling.
Helping others to grow is always an extremely satisfying experience. I absolutely love the moment when something finally clicks for one of my students and they really get it. Sometimes they even begin to explain to me how it works, and that feeling is simply marvelous.
I have a weird background with math. I studied art in college, but all throughout I taught myself programming and took higher level math classes of my own volition, and now I work as a software engineer. I think this gives me a unique perspective on math, because I see all math through a visual and physical lens. All math is describing some physical idea, that is often easier to understand than just looking at formulas makes it seem. Math, to me, is not only super cool, but also beautiful. And when one of my students begins to see that as well it's one of the most rewarding experiences I can have, and that's why I love to tutor.
Plus, I often find that in teaching others, I learn about the subject even more, which is just a cherry on top of the rest of it all