Community Partner Highlight: Lincoln El-Amin

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KIPP Indy has partnered with College Tutors of Indiana to ensure students who have unfinished learning receive additional support to improve their skills in mathematics. Every day, over 180 students receive individual tutoring sessions. The majority of students receive up to 3 sessions a week. Our mid-year academic data demonstrates the immense impact of consistent one-on-one support. For instance, 60% of 3rd grade students who received individual tutoring demonstrated proficiency on their quarterly assessment. Read below to learn about one tutor’s experience at KIPP Indy. 


Tell us about yourself.

I’m originally from Dallas, Texas and lived there for most of my life. I graduated from the University of Texas A&M last year and then moved to Indianapolis back in August. I’m currently in grad school for creative writing at Butler and work as a TA there. I tutor when I’m not in class.

What does your day-to-day schedule look like?

I’m here for three hours a day on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. Tuesdays and Thursdays, I’m here all day from 9:30 am-3:30 pm. I have 35-minute blocks for each student and I teach about 13 students.

If a student is absent, I always have a list of kids that I can pull instead to work with. During the sessions, we try to do at least 10 math problems together. I work with fifth grade students who are learning fractions, multiplication, division, and probability. We work on an array of topics. If we ever have extra time at the end, I try to play a short game of tic-tac-toe with them to blow off the math steam.

What have been the most effective strategies?

We mainly practice problems. As a kid, math was my least favorite subject so when I’m working with students I try to make sure students understand the math concept. I like showing kids different ways of solving problems to grow their understanding.

What’s your favorite part?

Working with the kids is always a joy. With tutoring, students can really see they are getting better at it. I also always start off our sessions by asking kids how their day has been going and what’s going on in their other courses. My mom has her doctorate in emotional connections between students and teachers. So I’ve heard a lot about how if you take the time to build a connection with kids, they’ll support you just as much as you support them.

As a whole, I’m so glad we have a tutoring center here because outside of the math, it’s important to give students the opportunity to talk one-on-one with someone. It makes their whole educational experience better. I love having the opportunity to build those relationships with students.