One of the newest additions to The Language Boutique’s team of highly-qualified teachers, Stephanie Pentiuk is a certified teacher from Michigan, USA, who favours enquiry-based teaching and personalises her lessons specially for each of her students. Her love for teaching began in high school and it still shows today in her brilliantly creative teaching style. Read on to find out what inspired Stephanie’s passion and how she uses that in her teaching!
1. Tell us something interesting or unusual about yourself
Fun Fact 1: I spent 3 weeks volunteering on an elephant sanctuary located 3 hours outside of Chiang Mai, Thailand last year (2016).
Fun Fact 2: When I lived in San Diego, California, I taught myself how to surf. I would go surfing at least once a week for over a year but I’m still afraid to “duck-dive” under a wave.
2. What type of lessons do you teach at The Language Boutique?
3. What kind of activities do you use in your lessons?
My lessons have always included hands-on activities that enhance my students’ understanding of the content and increase retention. Recently I’ve started using TED Talks and Podcasts in my English lessons. These resources provide a new way of engaging students and teaching the English language while keeping them up to date on the latest international topics such as English Mania, the Bowe Bergdahl Case, and Hackers.
4. What do you most enjoy about teaching?
I love when my students can explain why something is the way that it is, especially when it’s something I taught them! It’s one thing to memorise facts and processes but it speaks volumes to their understanding when they can provide an explanation for why that fact is a fact and why we do things a certain way.
5. What teaching experience do you have?
My teaching career began in high school when I volunteered as a tutor for elementary students in a local homeless shelter near Detroit, MI. That’s where I fell in love with teaching. After my first year of college, I was hired as an assistant teacher at an Early Childhood Education Center (ECEC) on campus and shortly after I began working with autistic children through an Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) program. I continued to work at both the ECEC and the ABA therapy throughout my college career. During my off-days from my studies, I worked as a substitute teacher. After which, I took on a six month assignment substitute teaching in a special needs kindergarten classroom.
When I completed my degree in teaching, I started doing home tuition both on my own and with a company. Soon after, I was hired to manage an entire department to provide financial education to local low and moderate income families and schools in San Diego.
Five years later, I am very happy to have been invited to join The Language Boutique as a teacher where I get to use my teaching experience and creativity to provide fun and personalised lessons to my students.
6. Do you follow a particular style of teaching?
At The Language Boutique, I’m able to tailor my teaching style to fit the individual needs and learning style of the student, but I’ve always favoured enquiry-based teaching. This method builds on the natural instincts we have to explore the world around us and I usually see a deeper level of understanding and retention from this method.