Martin S Phabmixay – Founder of Stepping Stones Education
Meet Martin S Phabmixay, Founder of Stepping Stones Education
Aside from making sure the classrooms look neat and tidy! Martin as Head Tutor takes responsibility for the development and progress of Stepping Stones Education’s specialist Mathematics and English tutoring courses. Martin graduated from The King’s School, Parramatta with an ATAR of 98.85 and currently studies a Double Bachelor of Commerce and Liberal Studies at the University of Sydney.
Time for a quick interview with Lisa!
1. Why did you found Stepping Stones Education?
Firstly, I’ve always had a deep fascination and appreciation for how individuals learn. I always knew that practicing how to learn itself as a skill was just as important to me as learning my subjects at school and now in university! By taking this approach to my studies I have seen firsthand the results it has brought. It is a methodology and mindset that I can’t help but want to share with everyone else. Stepping Stones Education was a way for me to apply this philosophy to the real world.
By starting Stepping Stones Education, I was making my own personal statement on the way tutoring should be practiced in NSW. Tutoring in my view should be a place where thoughtfulness, a true understanding of concepts, and opportunities to develop your discipline and work ethic are possible and accounted for in the design of every aspect of the centre. This is a vision that I strive to make Stepping Stones Education closer to achieving each and every working day.
Secondly, the timing and people were right to start Stepping Stones Education. After finishing the HSC, I brought with me my own personal experiences as a Volunteer Homework Help Tutor from Auburn Diversity Services Inc. During that time as a volunteer I had the opportunity to start up small tutoring classes to help students with Mathematics and English from a variety of backgrounds and High School years, this gave me invaluable experience as it was from there I began learning how to develop outcomes, prepare materials, and teach in front of a class of students.
As for the people, I had the great opportunity of forming a close team with Chris Chiu one of my closest and dearest friends and my brother Thomas S Phabmixay in starting Stepping Stones Education. We all brought to Stepping Stones Education a variety of skills and strengths that are what I believe to be the key to Stepping Stones Education’s existence today. It also helped that we shared a common philosophy on learning and how tutoring is one of the greatest tools we can use to help High School students actualise their own academic and personal potentials.
There is so much more I want to say on this topic but I hope that answers your question for now!
2. If you could tell your high school self one piece of advice, what would it be?
I would definitely tell my High School self to keep doing what I was doing. I value and cherish each and every experience I had in High School. It was because of my personal experiences that I was able to learn what it was like to go from being a struggling student in my earlier years to one that was closer to my own personal ideals academically and personally.
I would have also told myself to spend more time with my brother during Year 11 and Year 12. I was so focused on doing and achieving more in High School that I forgot to take a break every now and then to play DOTA with him. Now his about to be married, old, and doesn’t play games anymore!
3. What do you love most about Stepping Stones Education?
I love that Stepping Stones Education is growing to become a place that fits not only my own values about learning but also the values of everyone in the Stepping Stones team as a whole. I love the fact that every moment I spend here at the centre never feels like “dreaded work”, It doesn’t matter if I’m mopping down the classrooms, cleaning the tables, teaching classes, or counselling one of our tutors I enjoy and cherish it all.
I also love the fact that Stepping Stones Education has been making a positive impact on the lives of its students and parents! Nothing makes me more excited than to hear the words “Martin! You wouldn’t guess what I got on my most recent exam, it was….”
4. Finally, What do you look for in a tutor?
To give some context as to what I look for in my tutors, it boils down to what I treasured most in a teacher-student relationship. When I started teaching in 2014 under Stepping Stones Education I was constantly testing myself every lesson as to what were the best qualities of a tutor. Frankly, I was in love with the idea of honest teaching, an idea that bases itself on the importance of connecting with a student and helping that student with their specific needs.
With skill and enough practice, I was able to translate this skill to be applied in a small classroom as I combined healthy competition and academic camaraderie into the equation. As such, when I screen potential tutors or examine how my tutors are performing I look out for these aspects. I ask myself, are they connecting with their students and are they truly helping them with their concerns? This isn’t a black and white process as sometimes even students don’t know what their struggling with and for my tutors have this foresight is a skill I respect and value.
From the first lesson even to the lesson’s I conduct today, I continue to employ all the skills and methodologies of the wonderful mentors I’ve had throughout the years and with enough humility I am able to constantly look out for new and exciting ways of teaching. The beautiful thing is that learning is such a core aspect of us humans and for those who can return it to its simplicity are those who truly understand teaching.
Thanks for that Martin!
Don’t forget you can join in on Martin’s mathematics and English classes here at SSEDU for a Free Trial Lesson. Begin your journey towards realising your potential in High School and beyond with the guidance and mentoring of Martin today!
By Lisa Beaumont
Enjoyed this article? Then make sure to like our Facebook page to get constant up to date notifications on our latest articles, case studies, and study guides!
© 2015 Stepping Stones Education All Rights Reserved