Welcome! I am glad to meet you. My name is Ms. Diana. Six years ago, I earned the International Baccalaureate Program Diploma as a native Russian-speaking Ukrainian Jewish first-generation immigrant living in Alaska. The mission of “Education for a Better World” strongly resonated with my Jewish values to become an educator and empower the next generation of life-long learners and menschen. I have earned my Master in Secondary Education from Indiana University—Bloomington with seven teaching endorsements and am earning my K-8 Certificate from Alaska Pacific University. As a former pre-medical student with two years of research experience, I have rediscovered my passion for the sciences. I would be overjoyed to pass on the precious gift of advanced education to students from all backgrounds. As an educator, I must understand not only my students’ academic needs but also their social and emotional development. The connection a teacher builds with students is fundamental to influencing their healthy mindsets, behaviors, and peer influences. Through volunteering and working with youth for the past decade, I learned invaluable skills for connecting with and teaching students. At my placement, I was introduced to a student who was angry, crying, and cussing at his teacher. I listened to him and encouraged him. The student responded quickly and calmed down. Due to the rapport I built with this student, he was much more polite and agreeable when I later worked with him in class. Many adolescents overvalue immediate rewards and social relationships over their school responsibilities. I worked with a student who was glowing about his independence: He had his own apartment unit, lived with a girlfriend, and was earning money at a part-time job. However, he was at risk of not graduating due to his school work ethic. As part of my training to teach gifted and highly gifted students at the Anchorage School District, I have learned techniques to motivate underachievers. After I discussed with my mentor teacher this students' academic, emotional, social, and behavioral progress, I designed targeted interventions through the Coil RTI to develop healthy mindsets and scaffold long-term goals to succeed academically. I must be able to effectively employ a variety of approaches in fostering a sense of community among my students. To increase intellectual camaraderie and belongingness at school, I had students write and say class cheers to promote learning. I also often began class sessions with connections where students would share one good and one bad event in their lives. The students were more enthusiastic and engaged after we said the cheers and connections at the beginning of the class sessions. In addition, I promoted multicultural tolerance by having students collaboratively create skits on a choice of international holidays and explain their origin and importance. I also helped students with an interview podcast assignment as a means to bridge their funds of knowledge with the class context and deepen their social bonds to promote resiliency. Coming from an abusive family, I have a strong interest in incorporating mental health practices in the classroom. For this reason, in my mentorship and my tutoring, I have begun my classes with breathing, mindfulness, grounding, and meditation exercises to help students destress and focus on the lesson. I also frequently checked in with students after class to provide emotional support. When students transitioned to virtual learning because of COVID, many became depressed and struggled to focus in school. After attending a virtual Anchorage Educational Association forum on the effects of social isolation on students’ wellbeing, I ran a Psychology Club to encourage students’ connection during the quarantine. As a teacher, I must be able to personalize learning for students who have diverse abilities and needs. I must be responsive to my students' specific needs by working collaboratively with families and seeking the help of school specialists and community resources when appropriate. For example, I worked collaboratively with school staff to help a student who was living in transitional housing and had poor internet connection. She was permitted to borrow a Chrome Book and was given extended deadlines. I also had a three-way meeting with the student's district-appointed specialist and my mentor teacher to develop a modified research presentation for a SPED student with a severe learning disability. I also helped a SPED student improve her literacy by reading children’s books, such as Crenshaw, to increase word familiarity by repetitive exposure. I used the favorite quotation activity, anticipation guide, response writing activities with sentence frames as part of a worksheet to develop reading interest and awareness and build on comprehension, critical thinking, and writing skills. After these interventions, I saw the joy and excitement on her face as she understood the book. Through my triliteracy in Russian, English, and Spanish, I can provide accommodations to ELL students. I worked with a candidate SPED teacher to create an IEP for a lesson on The Tragedy of Macbeth for a given ELL student using a variety of visual communication tools and alternate primary-language material. I also designed a Russian-language health unit, which can be used to both teach students Russian and also accommodate for Russian-speaking students with limited English. I also have experience providing instruction tailored by my students’ learning needs and personality as an ESL teacher for Chinese students. I strive to tailor instruction for students of all ability levels and encourage them to demonstrate their knowledge in the best way for them. To promote students’ self-directed, lifelong learning through the satiation of their innate curiosity, I gave students a presentation assignment to research on a question of their choice and express their convictions through propositions based on their findings. I also embedded prioritization and time management skills by requiring students to complete a Weekly Plan of Action and monitoring their progress. I also utilized Universal Design Learning by differentiating by process with scaffolding by increasing complexity based on Bloom's Taxonomy and incorporated an enrichment activity in a Vocabulary Man activity. Immediately after employing this instructional strategy in my mentorship, I saw the increase in engagement and depth of learning amongst students from a variety of ability levels, interests, and sociocultural backgrounds. As a teacher, I must develop curricula that employ a variety of instructional approaches to develop students’ critical thinking, problem-solving, and inquiry abilities. I have discussed with my mentor teacher techniques to design holistic curricular units that increase learning engagement and relevancy so that students will use knowledge from class in their own lives. I seek to build units around life lessons and social advocacy as part of STEAM instruction. Thus, I teach the physiological effects of the sympathetic nervous system as part of the fight/flight/freeze response through a laboratory experiment on the effect of exercise stress on heart rate. Then, I teach about the protective factors against toxic stress, potential mental health outcomes of prolonged stress, possible interventions, and incorporate a social advocacy-oriented display board final assignment that would require students to integrate their knowledge to demonstrate their mastery. I want to grow my students’ enthusiasm for science to promote the fulfillment of their innate curiosity towards lifelong learning though self-directed science experiments and class presentations. I have experience with designing curricular units. I designed a three week lesson plan on The Tragedy of Macbeth for 11th grade IB/AP students based on Indiana state standards. I begin the unit by modeling literary analysis of another short work and monitoring students’ progress. The unit includes in-class partner and group work as well as socratic seminars that tie the text with findings in psychology. Similarly, in my mentorship, I had students present a literary analysis of a section from A Midsummer Night's Dream. Students examined the relevance of the themes to their relationships and decisions in and out of school. Students worked in pairs to process the material on a deeper level while I checked their progress and gave suggestions on literary analysis and presentation techniques. Because I seek to flip my classroom to maximize the students’ time to master the standards deeply and authentically, I prioritized interactive individual, partner, group, and jigsaw activities in my units. I helped build on students’ funds of knowledge to better understand the material by starting lessons with a whole class activity followed by partner and group work and concluded with an integrated whole class discussion. My rich experience in the education field and triliteracy will enhance my sensitive and compassionate connection with diverse students. I enthusiastically await the ability to provide the full spectrum of education personalized by my students’ values, cultures and community to enable them to succeed. I am eager to commence my journey towards the teacher’s lifelong service to human needs. Thank you for your time, and I'm looking forward to helping you on your path towards academic success!
Teaches Elementary, Middle School, High School, College
Teaching since 2011
Teaches ages 3+
Speaks English, Russian, Spanish
Has background check
I just wanted to say a quick thank you to Diana who helped me out with my final papers for my psych courses. Their knowledge and understanding of the subject was incredibly helpful in guiding me through the research and writing process. Overall, I feel much more confident in my writing and research skills thanks to their help. I highly recommend them to anyone looking for a knowledgeable and supportive tutor. Thank you!
She Includes videos and shows pictures to make the material more interesting and meaningful. She takes time to help when I'm stuck on a word or a picture. Great tutor 10/10.
She is amazing, I was so stressed with my homework but she helped me a lot with my assignments. Thanks Ms. Diana.