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!!!) 


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.


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.