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As summer break is winding down, many students look ahead to fall and one question is on their minds: how can I start this year strong? Well, trust me, your teachers are saying the same thing (yes, your teachers are people too). For teachers and students alike, fall is a time to start over and begin the year anew.   Chances are, you've grown as a person over the summer. I remember the fall of my junior year in high school, several students came back looking like completely different people because they had grown and changed so much over the summer. Be prepared for this. You may want to take a moment to put some effort into your own appearance, which brings me to tip #3:   3. Buy a back to school outfit (or two). Even if your budget is limited, Old Navy has some great stuff, even if it's just a few new pairs of socks or t-shirts. Or go for a few new outfits at your favorite store. Keeping your appearance neat the first week of school will make a great... read more

The aim of college is to inspire critical thinking in student writing - the kind of critical thinking that enables students to make independent claims derived from texts having to do with some of the most pressing issues of our time. Many times students find themselves wondering just how to achieve this in writing - they want an A, B, C plan for writing. This does exist, it's just not the same for every student. What I encourage other tutors to do is provide guidance to college students on how to communicate their ideas to the world with confidence and clarity, stop regurgitating/summarizing, and be part of solutions through the act of writing. Many times I encourage students to bring their own experiences into writing and I encourage my colleagues to help their students do the same. It is by taking this kind of focuses approach that we can help college students learn about subjects they might be defensive about, become more clear and organized, and become better readers,... read more

"Good tutors cut back on talking and let students identify their own errors. In the best sessions, the student is talking just as much as the tutor - or even more." - Readers Digest 5/13 The mark of a good tutoring session is the level of engagement from the part of the student. This happens when a student feels personally engaged in the subject matter, and inspiring that level of engagement may be harder than you think. Many people find it difficult to hold their tongues - especially when we as educators believe (and rightly so) that we have a larger knowledge base than our students. That is after all why we are educators. But I would like to call attention to this important aspect of good tutoring (statistics prove it) - that students who are personally invested in their subject show higher rates of success, lower test anxiety, and overall improvement in self-efficacy (beliefs of capability) across the board. Why would this... read more

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