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IB Chemistry SL/HL Alumni & Tutor, Scored 41/45 on IBDP with 7s in Chemistry and Biology. Holds Master's of Chemistry from the University of Toronto and BSc. in Chemistry and Biochemistry, both graduated with High Distinction. I have 4+ years of tutoring experience in IB and 6+ years with University Level courses!
Hi! I'm Michael. Originally from Nepal and Canada, I did my IB PYP, MYP, and DP in the United Nations school in Vietnam! I graduated from the University of Toronto with my MSc. in Biological Chemistry and a double major BSc. in Chemistry and Biochemistry. I have been tutoring for over six years and have tutored both HL and SL IB Chemistry. I love to get to know my students and create a positive work environment since I have experienced what it is like to deal with the pressures of school, applications, studying, and getting good grades! I can help with your exams, IA, and even the EE!
2021-Present @ Online Tutoring & Educational Websites, Toronto, ON
Tutoring students in both SL and HL Chemistry from 11-12th grade & Grade 9 - 12 in Chemistry/Sciences at all levels across the Ontario Curriculum.
2020-Present @ University of Toronto, Toronto, ON
Chemistry Teaching Assistant
Was a Teaching Assitant for the Chemistry department at The University of Toronto. Taught and coordinated labs for students in CHM135: Physical Chemistry, CHM 136: Organic Chemistry, and was chosen as a standout TA for the summer 'Catch up Camps' in which I would supervise and guide students in-person for labs in the summer of 2021. Responsibilities involved weekly preparation of class material, teaching students concepts that they may be unfamiliar with, answering questions, and
2019-2020 @ Private Tutor, Toronto, ON
Private Chemistry & Biology Tutor
I have tutored Chemistry and Biology for life science students at the undergraduate level. From 100-400 level.
2018 @ University of Toronto, Toronto, ON
Research Opportunity Project, Worked under Professor Barb Morra to optimize a green oxidation transformation, then developed a research scope and integrated it into the CHM249 syllabus. It will be published in the Journal of Chemical Education in 2020.
2016-2018 @ University College, Toronto, ON
Created posters, logos, and promotional materials for University College in The University of Toronto for events and announcements.
University of Toronto, Toronto, ON
Master's Degree in Biological Chemistry
University of Toronto, Toronto, ON
Bachelor's Degree in Chemistry & Biochemistry Double Major
Extended Essay (EE)
Internal Assessment (IA)
Middle Years Programme
Primary Years Programme
Tutor Teaching Style
I believe that a student will thrive in a comfortable, low-stress environment where they can be willing to get questions wrong so that they can learn how to answer questions right when it matters. I try my best to conform to the students' needs, while still encouraging them to push outside of their boundaries. If a student can successfully leave each lesson having learned even just one new concept, they will be surprised at how quickly that knowledge can build up!
In the first session, I would start by talking to the students about their hobbies, passions, and how they feel about chemistry. I would gauge how the student is doing in their chemistry course and begin to review some concepts to ensure that we're starting on the right track. The first session will be one where we get to know each other and determine if it is a good match.
Being an independent learner is all about the methods you use to tackle new concepts. Learning to absorb new content, adequately set yourself up to review it, and then apply it to questions successfully is a skill to learn. I focus heavily on teaching students the concepts and teaching them how to learn and study themselves based on the trial and error methods that I have spent years perfecting.
Firstly, motivation is something that will always come and go. The most important moments are when you are motivated and finding ways to work around it. This revolves around learning information in small amounts consistently, rather than attempting to cram all the information at once. Finding small ways to understand the content, even if it is not directly sitting down and writing notes, will allow my students to keep up with their class while minimizing stress.
In chemistry, all complex concepts build upon the basic ones. If a student is having difficulty, it usually means that we must look at the problem's essential components and figure it out piece by piece. Chemistry is the perfect subject to break down any concept and work through it! I have always been able to have my students figure out even the toughest of concepts with a slight change in perspective.
Deciphering a question to figure out what it is asking is one of the excellent skills in IB. Many students believe that you must understand each word of the question to answer it successfully; however, the trick lies in identifying key terms. Suppose we can build a vocabulary of key terms and concepts. In that case, a student that previously struggled with paragraph questions can now figure out the key concepts without getting distracted by the extraneous wording added to the question!
I have found that a student that is most comfortable with potentially getting a question wrong is the one that will learn the most. When tutoring, we are here to tackle the most challenging concepts, which means you will get a concept wrong at least once in a while! If we can establish a low-pressure environment, we can figure out the best way for you to learn!
Relating these very complex concepts to real-life situations is the best way to visualize and memorize Chemistry concepts. Similarly, overcoming a problem you previously could not solve is a great way to get excited about Chemistry! I have personally experienced years of challenged and problems in Chemistry, and one of the best feelings is being able to tackle all the concepts that you once did not understand.
I put a heavy focus on drawing and repetition with students. As stated previously, all complex concepts build upon the basic ones. Therefore, solidifying the basics through practice and repetition will make the complicated concepts much easier! Chemistry is more like learning a skill than memorizing, so the more hours we put into it, the more skillful we become.
Building confidence will come slowly but surely through consistent practice. Over time, when we continue to get through the material, you will be able to look back at concepts you once found challenging and be proud of your progress!
When tutoring, I consistently ask the students questions about the concepts we are studying. Sometimes they are minimal and basic, and sometimes they are more complex. These questions allow me to know when to slow down, when to repeat a concept or when the student is ready to move on. My experience tutoring allows me to dictate the flow of the lesson to optimize the student's performance!
I continually will adapt how much time we spend on specific concepts based on how I have evaluated a student's needs. Each student requires varying effort on different concepts, and each student's personality is distinct! Some students enjoy a quiet and focused session, tackling specific questions they had trouble with. Other students enjoy a slower pace to review particular concepts rather than practice questions!
I have an IPad that allows me to draw live for the student, I also have access to complete question banks to bring up questions and provide students with practice problems, and I have complete textbooks for IB Chemistry HL and SL. I pride myself on a seamless session, so I have an excellent internet speed and microphone/camera quality to avoid interruptions!
An education isn't how much you have committed to memory, or even how much you know. It's being able to differentiate between what you know and what you don't- Anatole France
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