Growing up in the dreary climate of Washington State, I spent many a rainy day inside playing card and board games and building Legos with my family. These experiences instilled in me a great fondness for puzzles and a fascination with logic and deduction that would become a lifelong obsession.
My passion for puzzles and logic blossomed at school into an affinity of the sciences. In them I found an entrancing new world, replete with fascinating problems to be solved and intriguing ideas to be discovered. However, it wasn’t until I went off to college at UCSB that I settled on my true calling: mathematics.
It was also in college that I discovered the first rumbling of my love for teaching, as I began helping my less-math-inclined family and friends with their coursework. To me, there was a joy that came, not just from helping others solve problems or sharing in that same passion from my youth, but in helping them to comprehend something new and complex. W.B. Yeats once said that, “Education is not the filling of a pail, but the lighting of a fire,” and it was seeing this fire in those I taught that truly ignited my passion for education.
The puzzle, for me, when it comes to teaching, is in finding the right tinder to ignite that fire. My lessons focus both on teaching the coursework and on engaging and establishing a rapport with the student. By doing so, I hope to discover in each the strengths they possess that will allow them to flourish. One-on-one tutoring allows me the ability to tailor each session to the student’s strengths and to create a thought-provoking lesson that goes beyond merely teaching how to plug in an equation and allows me to foster a deeper understanding of the material as a whole. I strive to create a supportive, collaborative, and inclusive environment, where all students are given the tools to become their best selves.
In my free time, I enjoy watching movies, both reading and writing fiction, and, of course, on those few rainy days we do get here, cozying up with a hot cup of tea and a good puzzle.