"Stay focused!" That's what I'd say if I could go back and sit down with my 9, 12, or 15 year old self. Look at your natural skills, the gifts that 'come easily,' for clues about who you are and what you can do successfully. If you love to read, look at paths that allow you to do that, to work with various materials, to teach others to read. If you love to write, consider the MANY paths for writers. Be willing to imagine ALL KINDS of ways to do what you love, what 'comes easily,' what is 'natural' for you. That is where, when, and HOW you will find your professional bliss!
I'm an educator, photographer, family therapist, I enjoy helping others succeed. I look forward to tutoring and getting to know WyzAnt students.
If you had asked my middle school students to describe our class routines, you might have thought I was their English teacher, not Social Studies. As a teacher and tutor, I’ve tried to pass on a legacy for the love of reading to my students. I often tell them, “If you can read, you can teach yourself anything.” In this article, I will give you some tips on how to get your children to read more, and more often.
It’s Not Magic!
Occasionally, parents visited my classroom to ask, “How do you do it?” They were usually referring to the success of my Friday Silent Reading routine.
Each fall, I explained the importance of literacy to my students and said that practice is best way to improve reading skills. I told them that I expected them to bring a book of their choice to class every day, to read it if they finished all the day’s scheduled activities I’d given them, and that the first 20 minutes of class every Friday was reserved for sustained silent reading.
Unless you or your child attends a year – round school, summer vacation begins sometime in the next week or so. College students have read more pages than they thought humanly possible, taken many exams, written research papers, and stayed up way too late over the past 10 months. Parents of school – aged children have helped with homework, gone to parent/ teacher conferences, E-mailed teachers, and maybe volunteered for one activity too many. This article will help you understand the importance of continuing your/ your child’s learning over the summer and lists several suggestions on how to make the fall back - to - school transition much easier!
Suffer No Setbacks
Educational researchers agree that students need to continue their education over the summer or they stand to lose up to three (3) months worth of the previous year’s learning. Think about that for a minute. It’s like going to class from March to May for no reason! Unless you keep learning over the summer, you’ll...
“Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.”
And reading is the vehicle to take you there!
Just like learning a new language, every year students try to learn CBS: College Board Speak. The College Board is the name of the company that creates the SAT. In order to make gains on the SAT, one may have to try new ways of learning. One of the best ways to learn a language is to create an immersive experience by surrounding yourself with speakers of that language, by traveling to an area in which the language is spoken for an extended period of time, or by attempting conversational level fluency prior to learning the written language.
Ways that have worked for me and for students I have helped in the past are the following: SAT words on a shower curtain, flash cards wallpapering a bathroom or bedroom wall, and 30-60 minutes of sustained work daily for a prolonged period of time. Just doing to prolonged work won't help all students because some students need a multi-sensory approach to learning.
In my classes, I reach students of all learning styles using color-coded...
Because my availability keeps changing, I've decided to post it on my blog instead of continually updating my profile. From June to the middle of August tutoring will be my only job, and so I will have more availability during the week than I did before. Some of my current students are taking vacations for all or parts of June, which means I have more time available in June. In addition, I've been approved for online tutoring, which should also help. Times when I will definitely not be available include Tuesdays after 4pm and Thursdays after 6pm. If you have any questions about this, please send me a WyzAnt email!
When working with children (especially 7 and below) it can be vital to their memory retention to take a break every thirty minutes.
I have had great success with my younger students who become stir crazy after half an hour of reading by leaving the study are and going outside or in a space where we wont bother others and doing some physical activities.
Since time is a concern it is important to only do this for ten minutes or so.
Sometimes we run and play tag, or we will do some jumping jacks, or just do some silly dancing.
When the student returns they are feeling a little more refreshed, lighthearted, and ready to continue.
That being said, it is very important to make it clear that the activity is is only supposed to be for a few minutes then it's right back to studying.
I hope this helps!
This Spring and Summer, why not invest in yourself or your child? Effective written communication is key to success in the competitive academic and career markets.
Get help with Getting Started with Writing, Discovering Writing Topics, Finding Focus
Responding to Writing Assignments
Reading for Comprehension and Understanding - Retaining Key Concepts, Theme, and more
... and, of course, that always challenging concept of Grammar. I teach Grammar as Tools ... not Rules.
Looking forward to hearing from you and hearing about your tutoring needs. See my profile for more information and my Subject Qualifications.
published writer & poet, teacher, tutor
I love to read. Reading takes you on all sorts of adventures and teaches you about the world around you. I could spend hours curled up with a good book.
But lately I have started to think about WHY I read.
Simply put, I read because it expands my knowledge, horizons, and especially my
Ben Johnson, a British philosopher (among other things), once said, "Language most shows a man. Speak, that I may see thee." This is a succinct summation of how I feel on the subject: the words you choose, the speech patterns you employ, say more about your education* and thirst for knowledge than anything else you do.
Therefore, I read to enhance my vocabulary. My vocabulary expands my speech. And hopefully someday my language will reflect the kind of person I strive to be.
*Education can, of course, mean both formal academics as well as knowledge garnered through observation and life experience.
After an absence due to the busiest part of the academic year, I am back in search of tutoring clients for the spring/summer. Before June 17, I will have hours available after school. As of June 17, my hours are much more flexible!
Hi there! This is my first blog post! I thought I would test this out before I post regularly... It comes with the tutor profile, so why not?!
I just want to give my number one piece of advice which has been true for every standardized test I have come across, no matter what grade level. I wish I had known this or understood this concept when I was growing up - I was always a good student, but maybe I would've been better!
Here is the scenario. You're faced with this gigantic passage and you see that it's something incredibly boring. Immediately, your brain shuts off as you attempt to crawl your way to the end of it. You also feel the pressure of the clock, so instead of reading the passage, you kind of end up skimming over it. Then there are all these questions and you have no idea where to begin because you didn't absorb a single thing you read, so in a panic, you start guessing, even if those guesses mean penalties (on certain tests). Sound like you?
Here is the strategy:...
The amount of pressure being placed upon students in the 21st century is increasing everyday. Pressures can include students who struggle with a learning disabilities, pressure to get into a good college, even poor teaching professionals who have lost their desire to teach our youth, which can lead to struggling in multiple academic subject areas. Put yourself into the shoes of a primary school student in the 21st century. Hormones are taking over and a plethora of emotions are showing their ugly faces. And your child probably has a glazed look every time you are trying to provide some guidance. As a parent, you must be pulling your hair out...right? This is the beautiful thing about having a tutor come to you! In a comfortable environment, and an outside perspective will open the door to a whole new world. I promise you will see the benefit sooner than you may think.
So who is the right tutor for you? There are many tutors that offer their services in similar subjects. However,...
Recently I had the opportunity to meet with a parent/business owner who hires/places tutors for high end families in my area. It was a wonderful opportunity as once again I heard the mantra, "Parents just want the grades to go up." I asked what this meant, how I could measure it (quantitatively and anecdotally) and if this was indeed proof of my skills as a tutor or a momentary 'save' on a reversal of fortune. This parent does not use Wyzant. I was hard pressed to accept from this parent the reason I wasn't being contacted by high end parents for tutoring was my lack of guaranteeing grades would go up, a promise I can not make in good faith as there are too many factors involved. Honesty and integrity should be important, not my sales ability.
In my years as a teacher and tutor, I have found once I have parents on board, the rest is EASY. Parents are the elephant in the room and I can run myself ragged (knowing full well very little if anything changes without parental...
IF I could go back in time and give my younger self some advice on how to be a better student, be more successful in school, life, etc, I would definitely tell myself that being involved in everything comes at a cost. It is better to find a few things that you like to do, do them well and often, than feeling stressed because there is so much on your plate at one time. Being a 'Jack of all Trades' it is natural for me to dip my toes in different waters- all at the same time, but that does not mean that I can give 100% to any of them at that time.
While I was able to get good grades (A- average) while in school, I was impressed by how much better I did- and felt about my work- the few times that I scaled back on my activities.
Another piece of advice that I wish that I could bestow upon my younger self would be to learn how to speak up in a group setting when someone is not fulfilling their part of an agreement. Now, this said, the best way to do this would be in a tactful manner-...
When interviewing a prospective tutor, parents should ask about the tutor's skills and experience, and find out if the tutor truly enjoys teaching. When the tutor feels enthusiastic about the subject, and communicates well, the student has an opportunity to learn to enjoy the subject too.
I recommend for parents to observe the first lesson to see the tutor's skills in action, and watch/listen carefully to future lessons when possible, to make sure the tutor has an encouraging, supportive attitude at all times. (Tutors should welcome and respond positively to the child's questions, and NEVER make the child feel "stupid," no matter what.) It is most important to have a safe and quiet place for studying, without distractions. I like to find a quiet table at a library, and work with students there. I welcome suggestions from parents, and I am always looking for ways to improve my teaching skills.
So, you have this big test coming up, it could be the ACT, SAT, MAP, End of Course Exams, or just a final and you are getting a little freaked out. Well, don't be. Here are some tips and tricks to taking a multiple choice test that work for any subject. Just realize that these tips and trick are not hard and fast rules, but just tips and tricks.
Multiple Choice Test Taking Tips:
- Read the question before you look at the answer.
- Come up with the answer in your head before looking at the possible answers, this way the choices given on the test won't throw you off or trick you.
- Eliminate answers you know aren't right.
- Read all the choices before choosing your answer.
- If there is no guessing penalty, always take an educated guess and select an answer.
- Don't keep on changing your answer; usually your first choice is the right one, unless you misread the question.
- In "All of the above" and "None of the above" choices, if you...
In my experience working with learners from various education levels and backgrounds, I understand the feelings of frustrations and concerns that many have when struggling with a subject or studying for a test but not receiving the results you would like or expect. It creates a feeling of helplessness or the sense that you can't overcome or you'll never get it. That's not true. With the right study skills, you can improve your confidence, preparedness, and ability in any area.
The keys to learner's success include having clear goals about what you want to achieve, learning effective study tips and strategies, pacing yourself, organizational skills, time management, academic planning and preparation, step-by-step instruction, committment (good work ethic), practice, and building confidence in your ability to improve and achieve your goals.
It's said, if you want to succeed, try and try again. That's the only way to do it.
If you have questions about assignments or practice...
In teaching children in this our millennial age, I have observed that a great number of students find it painstaking to sit down and write a proper essay or poem. While the computer can help to expedite the process of publishing the work, the quality is not of a high stand ard. I wish to emphasize the need for more creative writers of today. Most students are unable to keep pace with classroom teaching of reading and writing skills, especially when the school system is geared towards curriculum completion and preparations for state tests. The need for a good tutor is therefore essential. A student may fail in math or science. This only means that he is deficient in those areas. But if he fails in the English Language, he is fundamentally uneducated. Language defines our personality, who we are , and it is a gateway to learning the other subjects. Without analytic and critical thing skills, we are unable to make proper choices and judgements, and establish personal or national stability...
When working with a students’ reading levels and progress towards their comprehension, I am learning that you can’t do the same type of activities over and over again with them. They get bored and even though they may be struggling, they still want a challenge. You need to have them involved in engaging activities all the time.
One of the second graders I work with on reading doesn’t mind reading different books as the main activity of her tutoring sessions – in fact, I think her parents prefer it. Well, that’s just not good enough; she needs more of a challenge with her reading so that she can grow and develop with her class. After each reading, or sometimes even after a chapter, we go through the events of what happened, then discuss the setting, the characters, the conflict, and so on. We now incorporate a vocabulary lesson. I pull out vocabulary words that she struggled with and clearly didn’t know as we were reading and make a list. She then defines the word and uses them...