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Why does learning have to be boring?  Most kids struggle in school because they are unmotivated, not engaged, and embarrassed.  Unmotivated because they haven't found the connection to what they are learning about and their own lives.  Not engaged-well, unfortunately most schools are set up in a traditional setting with desks and books; and a lot of students don't learn in that setting.  Embarrassed- many are confused or struggling and are afraid to ask for help because of their peers.     I've created a way for students to learn in fun and engaging ways!  With a little competition, and a simple game such as Connect Four, my students start spelling words they never thought they could spell!  Playing Jenga was never so serious until there was a challenging task to meet if and when that tower falls!    As well as being a certified elementary school teacher, I'm also a certified personal trainer.  ... read more

Here are some of my favorite quotes on education: "Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever." --Mahatma Ghandi "Intelligence plus character--that is the true goal of education." --Martin Luther King, Jr. "The mind is not a vessel to be filled, but a fire to be kindled." --Plutarch "The educated differ from the uneducated as much as the living differ from the dead." --Aristotle "Knowledge will bring you the opportunity to make a difference." --Claire Fagin "You'll never know everything about anything, especially something you love." --Julia Child "If you think education is expensive, try ignorance." --Derek Bok "Education is the power to think clearly, the power to act well in the world's work, and the power to appreciate life." --Brigham Young "Learning is not attained by chance, it must be sought for... read more

As you may know, I am a big fan of the well-known author and brain specialist, Dr. Daniel Amen. He mentions in several of his books that Physical Exercise is good for the brain. I have read of research studies that showed a clear correlation between IMPROVEMENT in students' test scores in math and science, and their level of physical activity (for example, when math class followed PE class, the students had significantly higher scores). Maybe we should schedule PE before all math classes in our schools. What do you think about that idea? This morning I read an online article on the myhealthnewsdaily site, entitled "6 Foods That Are Good for Your Brain," and another article about how Physical Exercise helps maintain healthy brain in older adults too. The second article, "For a Healthy Brain, Physical Exercise Trumps Mental Workout" was found under Yahoo News. The remainder of this note is quoted from that article: Regular physical exercise appears... read more

I have several areas of knowledge beyond the listed subjects. To be brief, I am available on weekends and after school hours, but usually tutor in a library or Starbucks. At home tutoring is okay as well, but sometimes I may be able to arrange to do this at a child's school, if I work there on that day as a substitute teacher.

Getting plenty of sleep EVERY NIGHT during the week of the big test. Drinking plenty of water (some extra) for SEVERAL DAYS BEFORE the test, and enough during the test too, in small sips. (Having to go to the bathroom a lot is also stressful, so moderation is important here). They say most people don't drink nearly enough water. If we are even slightly dehydrated, it can cause the brain to slow down 10 to 20% or more, which makes a big difference on timed tests that require you to think QUICKLY. Getting exercise, and the right mix of oxygen to the brain is so important. Exercise can also help reduce feelings of stress. Does anyone want to go jogging for a while before you get ready to go to the big test? Good nutrition -- protein is "brain food," along with the right vitamins, minerals, Omega III essential oils, B-Complex vitamins, Lecithin, etc. It is worth consulting a nutritionist if you want to have peak performance from your brain. I know several excellent... read more

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