Starting Summer Session

Today, I start my summer session. I’m taking 12 credits over the summer: 2 classes in the first half, and 2 classes in the second half. These will all be graduate education classes, so no math for me this summer. (Well, except studying for July’s Praxis test!!!) 

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Cover Letter for Student Teaching Position

Dear Members of the Search Committee:

I am writing to request a student teaching placement for the Spring 2015 semester. My education includes an MEd. from [private liberal arts college] (in progress), an MBA in Finance from [Top 10 Ivy League Business School], and a BS in Mechanical Engineering from [large state university]. My work experience includes engineering analysis and design, financial analysis, and extensive tutoring in quantitative subjects. Therefore, I believe I am an ideal fit for a student teaching position.

I have a passion for education in general, and STEM education in particular, that I share with virtually everyone in my life. My academic record shows the high regard I hold for scholarship, and my career path demonstrates my strong interest in teaching, coaching, explaining, and presenting difficult subjects, especially quantitative material. Most recently, my part-time work as a tutor for high school students has been so enjoyable and successful, that I have concluded that teaching is ultimately the right profession for me.

Thank you for considering my application. I would welcome the opportunity to discuss my experience and credentials further. Most importantly, I would love to share my passion for math education with the students in your school district.

Sincerely,

Jonathan Frederick

Studying for Praxis II: 5161 Math Content Knowledge

I’m currently on a short break (11 days) before the summer semester starts. I won’t have any math classes over the summer, but I’ll be taking the Praxis II: 5161 on July 19. I started studying for it a little bit recently. I did some practice problems from the ETS website, and I’m making my own study sheets for topics that I really need to brush up on (a little bit of everything, here and there).

I wish more practice material were available, like there is for the SAT or GMAT. But, I’ll make do the best I can. At least I can find “regular” (that is, not necessarily Praxis prep) problems for the relevant topics. For example, I can find practice problems online for, say, matrix operations, integration by parts, exponential growth and decay, basic probability, and so on.

I’m a little nervous about taking the test on a computer, which is odd since I took the GMAT on the computer all the way back in 1999, and I scored in the 98th percentile, plus virtually all of my exams at Columbia Business School were computerized. I guess it’s the online graphing calculator that is the biggest “wild card” to me right now. I’m rusty on the TI-84 as it is, nevermind an online version.

All in all, I’ve got to think that starting to prepare two months in advance is a smart strategy

A Bit About Me

I’m Jonathan Frederick. I’m 40 years old, and I’m currently making a big career change. I’m getting certified to teach high school math, and I’m earning an M.Ed. along the way (since teacher certification for a career-changer is about 90% of an M.Ed.). I have a BS in Mechanical Engineering and an MBA in Finance. I also tutor high-schoolers right now in SAT math, algebra, pre-calc, geometry, and history.