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Here are few few pieces of advice to motivate you while writing- fiction or nonfiction!   First and foremost, know your subject.  If you are writing a story, know your characters.  If you are writing an essay, research the topic.  The more information you have, the clearer your topic becomes to explain or argue.     Second, be passionate!  Whether you are writing about what on earth Heathcliffe's deal with Cathy was, the lifecycle of a frog, or why orange Starburst are better than yellow, you need to be invested in what you write. Sometimes you are given boring topics- regardless, try to put a bit of yourself in your writing.  If you are bored writing it, your audience will be bored reading it.  When all else fails, try to fall back on your personal beliefs and values for inspiration; for example, "According to three out of four students at Spring Hill Middle School, Minecraft is the best video game of this generation... read more

Hello, Peggy and Jake!   I just wanted to put in writing some of the topics that were discussed earlier today.     First and foremost, Jake should hopefully be able to locate his writing folder.     Secondly, the sources we found online for his persuasive essay are listed on the back of the note paper I gave to Jake.  One was a census pdf from 2012 listing the average American income, and the other was from listing the average cost of various types of collges (2-year, 4-year, public, private, and so on).  This information should be used to compare the cost of tuition to the average wages earned in a family, and then further discuss how the current tuition rate isn't affordable without scholarships and/or student loans. If he hasn't mentioned it in his essay already, he should consider adding a section on how tuition isn't the only expense that a family faces at college (i.e. food, dorms, entertainment,... read more

The other day, I was perusing the internet and came across a website that prompted me to constuct this blog. Now while the visual content was done well, the written content was utterly horrible. I wanted to contact the individuals who created it and inform them of how poorly the grammar was. I had never seen so many typos in one sentence, nor a complete and blatant disregard for punctuation. I'm not trying to demean the individuals, but I can not help but to go on a rant. It was an absolute horror to read the consistent misspellings, and I hope that there are other writers who feel the same.

I want to share with everyone a free online Coursera course on learning how to learn, the full title of the course is Learning How to Learn: Powerful mental tools to help you master tough subjects, by Dr. Barbara Oakley, Dr. Terrence Sejnowski .  I am taking this course myself and I found a lot of useful tips and information, both for myself and to share with my students, for example, it talks about how to deal with procrastination, the focus and diffuse mode of study and how to balance the two to make your study most efficient.  You can access the course page by searching for the course in      For those who are not familiar with Coursera, it "provides universal access to the world’s best education, partnering with top universities and organizations to offer courses for anyone to take, for free".  I strongly recommend everyone to take a look. 

Patience: Key element to any great tutor, even if I need to go over the material more than once. Listening: Listening to the student and his/her needs is crucial. This will help develop true understanding and set a healthy learning environment. Make learning an exciting experience, not just a task that needs to be accomplished. Set Goals: To keep the student focused. As a Tutor, do not expect to know everything: It is OK, if you do not know how to answer, admitting that you do not have an answer is also a learning experience for your student. You can always investigate and bring an answer back the next class.

Many students who are having difficulty with particular subjects hear "get a tutor!"  So, you go out and start looking. However, if you have never hired a tutor or worked with one, making the experience work for you can be a challenge.  What is a student to do?   1)  Find the tutor that is right for you.  You cannot tell everything from a profile.  Someone might have years of experience in  the classroom, but that person might not be as effective one-on-one.  Some people have very little experience, but know how to impart the information they do have.  Meet with the tutor for a get-to-know you session.  Ask questions about the person's experience.  And, let that person ask you questions.  Bring past work to the first session, as well as syllabi and other information from the class.  This will help the tutor see if s/he is comfortable working with the material.    2) ... read more

I am pretty OCD about how I do things as a tutor. This includes being prepared. This also has got me thinking about what it means to be prepared as a tutor. I believe it involves two things. Those are being prepared physically by having the tools you need, and also knowing what you will cover in each lesson.   I started the concept of a tutoring bag about a year ago. I LOVE IT. It has all sorts of goodies in it from dry erase boards to pencils to graphing paper. I even have things that are outside of the box available just incase I need them. For example, I have simple dollar store games in my bag which often help my students who suffer from attention deficit problems. I never know what I am going to need but it allows me to be unconventional with my tutoring which has been a big asset. Also realistically, as much as we want our students to come prepared, SOMEONE is going to forget something!   I also lesson plan before my lessons. I commended tutors... read more

      Connecting study material to real-world things that the students find interesting is a strategy teachers often attempt to use. The idea behind this method is simple: transform the material into something more relevant and the students will be hooked. It gives the students something interesting to maul over instead of having to work on yet another arbitrary problem they were given to complete.       However, if this strategy in not executed thoughtfully then it ends up alienating the tutor from the student and thus is rendered counterproductive. While trying to make the material relatable tutors can unknowingly offer examples that make them seem out of touch. This is because they often assume what kids find interesting these days instead of ask them what he, she or ze likes. People don't appreciate being stereotyped and interests are a personal aspect of someones identity. Therefor, a better way to utilize this strategy... read more

To enhance learning, and retain information, I recommend the following:   1. Be well rested. You must get sufficient sleep at night to perform optimally. Go to bed every night at the same time, and wake up at your scheduled time - every day - even weekends! 2. Nutrition - I cannot stress enough the importance of nutrition to enhance learning and memory. Avoid junk food. Eat lots of fruits and vegetables to get the essential nutrients. 3. Exercise - Research has shown exercise keeps your brain healthy and active. 4. Hobbies - Pursue a hobby or two. Breaking from studies, and engaging in a hobby you are truly passionate about will enrich your life and exercise parts of your brain that studies alone will not. 5. Relax and Diffuse - neuroscience claims there are two states that help you learn in different ways: Focused and Diffused. When intently focusing yields no results, relax! Walk away. Lie dow, go for a walk, do something other than focus, and you may... read more

Hi Everyone!   I am a Registered Nurse with5 years of experience in Acute Care, primarily in the Adult, Critical Care setting with experience tutoring for both Nursing-based subjects, and primarily the NCLEX. I have a BA, BSN, and CCRN certification. I am presently in pursuit of a Master's Degree, having completed Graduate Pathophysiology and Pharmacology.   I am local to Central, New Jersey and available for tutoring during week days, week nights, and available weekends.   In recent months, I have sucessfully provided tutoring services to several graduate nurses seeking additional assistance for both HESI, and NCLEX. I offer one-one, individualized tutoring that is practical, applicable for high scores passing exams, and, affords you a solidified foundation of knowledge of proper testing capacity.   I'm proud to be an RN, and with a little help, you can be too!    

I am a German native speaker and have lived over 30 years in Germany. As a mother of five children (all of them bilingual in English and German) I know how to teach a language in a fun and immersive way. When we moved from Germany to the USA my kids spoke hardly any English. Several months later ... they were top students at school. Let me teach you German in the same way. Immersive, fun, interactive. Learning a new language can be fun! Start today and invest in your education. I look forward to hearing from you! Korinna

       Book, books... Table, tables... Phone, phones... Day, days... So... life, lifes, right? Nope! The plural of life is lives. And, isn't the plural of sheep sheeps? Nope! The plural of sheep is sheep. It's the same word.      Have you ever wondered how to handle all of the rules and exceptions to rules in the English language? Here is an introduction (a beginning) to understanding the rules about plural nouns. Hopefully, it will make figuring out how to change that word less of a guessing game and more of a skill. '   Plurals What is a plural noun? A plural noun is a person, place, or thing of which there is more than one. Example: If there is more than one phone, they are called phones. When should I make a noun plural? Make a noun plural when there is more than one of what that noun represents How do I make a noun plural? Usually,... read more

ANSWER KEY 1. B 2. D 3. C 4. A 5. B 6. C 7. D 8. B Q1 is an Attitude/Tone Question Q2 is a Vocab.-in-Context Question Q3 is a Purpose Question Q4 is a Detail Question Q5 is a Vocab.-in-Context Question Q6 is a Suggest/Infer/Imply/Agree Question Q7 is a Suggest/Infer/Imply/Agree Question Q8 is a Detail Question

1. The author’s tone can best be described as: (A) Indifferent (B) Triumphant (C) Skeptical (D) Dismissive 2. As used in line 6, “blasphemous” most nearly means: (A) Someone who is deeply religious & a devoted follower (B) An individual who is highly respectable (C) Cheap and abusive (D) Someone who does not show reverence or respect for the holy or sacred 3. The author mentions “Costello, Lennon, Can, & the Cure” (lines 25-26) in order to: (A) Diminish the importance of They Want my Soul (B) Assert that Spoon will never be as great a band as these. (C) Give the reader a reference for the album’s sound. (D) Illustrate a contrast 4. According to the author, They Want My Soul is: (A) Better than Girls Can Tell, Kill the Moonlight, & Transference (B) Trying too hard to be something it’s not (C) Highbrow, and therefore too difficult to understand and enjoy (D) A bitter... read more

Here is the body of the Pitchfork article, copied and pasted from:   Spoon They Want My Soul Loma Vista; 2014 By Ryan Dombal ; August 4, 2014 8.6 BEST NEW MUSIC All these soulsuckers, they're among us. They're stealing our privacy, our convictions, the very essence of our being, and leaving behind little more than a "for sale" sign and some vague, constant hollowness. In music, a dwindling whirlpool of funds only spurs on these parasites as they scavenge 5 for scraps of humanity wherever ears can hear. Their thirst is real. And artists—those blasphemous and holy conduits for truth, liberty, and whatever else is missing from our lives—can't help but succumb. To last more than 20 years in rock'n'roll without sacrificing a lethal amount of one's soul requires a certain vigilance; to navigate around the pitfalls of  10 both punk and... read more

In all of my lessons, I like to ask my students about their interests, and then I tailor the lessons to them! Yesterday my student and I went over Princeton Review's "5 types of Reading Comprehension Questions." These are: 1. Detail, 2.Purpose, 3. Suggest/Infer/Imply/Agree, 4. Vocabulary-in-Context, and 5. Tone/Attitude. We did one of the drills from the book, but I didn't think it would be sufficient practice. Since this particular student loves music, I copied and pasted a music review from into a Word document, then wrote my own SAT Prep questions! It went over well; the student said that it was a good exercise because it actually held his interest. He's not a big reader in general, but music reviews are something that he "actually likes to read." So, if you have a student who really loves music, then here's a copy of the Pitchfork article and my questions!   ~Bethany G.

For many (most?) high school students, compulsory writing evokes frightful visions of blue essay pamphlets, red editorial comments, and a taunting landscape of white paper refusing to be occupied. The battle between disinterest in the topic and angst towards a looming deadline is matched only by the uncertainty of having anything worth saying, fear of having the ability to say it well, or both.   Some students choose to bide their time, sure that when they leave their high school (and college) self behind they will likewise leave behind ever having to do a compulsory writing assignment again, but we live in a time, an age, and a culture that is dominated by social media, and social media is dominated by posting, blogging, emailing, texting, tweeting, retweeting… in other words, words. That means that regardless what your plans for the future are, you are going to have to write, and if you are going to have to do it anyway you might as well choose to make friends... read more

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