Keeping Up With Homeschool

January 17th, 2015

Keeping up with homeschool can be difficult. There is no regularly scheduled class that you have to attend every day, your teacher is just a strange, faceless online entity, and the classes are rarely as interactive as ones in a traditional school environment. All these factors, combined with the fact that most students find it very difficult to teach themself new material, make it very easy to fall behind. At first, it can seem like a harmless thing to do. “Oh, I’ll just make up that day tomorrow.” But soon one day behind becomes two, then three, and suddenly you are fifteen class days behind and the end of the semester is just two weeks away. It is important to remain diligent in keeping up with your homeschool classes. There are a few things that you can do to make sure that this happens.

 

Try to have the work completed by the day that is assigned, or the date it is scheduled to be done. If you know that you will not have any time to log in to your online class on a certain day or week, get it done beforehand and be ahead instead of waiting until after and struggling to play catch up. Schedule a regularly recurring appointment with a tutor twice a week if you cannot motivate yourself to keep up in classes, or if the material is challenging to teach to yourself. Our one-on-one tutors will make sure to keep you on track, and make all the material easy to understand.

A Parent’s Role in Helping a Child Do Well In School

November 6th, 2012

Kids today have it rough. With all the competition to get into top ranked schools, parents are starting earlier and earlier to give their little academics a head start. But when does a parent’s involvement in their kids school work become a hindrance? Like most things, it’s all about a balance.

Studies show that children with parents who stay actively involved with their schoolwork will test better than kids with parents who don’t. So stay involved! Ask questions, congratulate success and encourage asking for help in more difficult subjects. Parents should know when their kids have a test and except to see the grade for it. This holds their student accountable for their grades. When parents do get back their kids work, reward their efforts. This doesn’t mean taking your daughter to buy a new IPod every time she brings home her Friday spelling test. But it does deserve a high five or a hug. (And remember parents, B grades are still fridge worthy!) Parents should be concerned with lower grades. When problem areas in their kid’s classes arise, steps should be taken to find extra help for their students. Begin with asking to see homework and review all problems that they have trouble with. If problems continue, check in with the teacher and see what else you can do to make sure your child keeps up with work.

When involvement becomes a hindrance rather than helpful is when parents begin to micromanage. Parents must remember that students should be expected to do their homework—and not because Mom stands over their shoulder until it’s done. Establish a set routine and stick to it. Your little study monkey should know that every day like clockwork, when he/she comes home, they makes a snack and start on homework. If your student is having trouble in school, run through their completed homework for mistakes, then help them with the questions they had trouble with. If your student normally tests well in school, ask if they completed their homework each night and trust that they have fulfilled each assignment completely. This allows your student to see that they need to be responsible for their own work and that you except them to be in charge. If they begin to slack on tests, start reviewing their homework again. Students need to learn how to be accountable for their studies. Writing down assignments, organizing papers and planning when to study are lifelong skills that they will need as a student as well as a professional. 

The Benefits of Homeschool

October 24th, 2012

Teaching a student from home has its benefits. Homeschooling is essentially one-on-one instruction delivered from the comforts of one’s own home. Every student in the traditional classroom can testify to the myriad of distractions; other students are the often the culprit. At home, with only one instructor, and no other students, comprehension and retention rates can be recorded with hockeystick like improvements.

Installing a whiteboard at home can make the lessons fun!

At the end of the day, the material that 30 students have difficulty grasping, is readily understood and mastered by a homeschool student in a fraction of the time. Is the teaching so much better at home? Sometimes yes and sometimes no– it always depends on the instructor, in the same way that success in sports can be pinned to the coach. The real takeaway is the dramatic difference between the interaction of the instructor and the student. A classroom is often forced to move at the pace of the slower half of the class, and often times, caters to hand raising of the slowest individuals. This type of classroom tailored teaching is inevitable because everyone learns at a different rate. The unfortunate side effect of having to adjust the speed of the lesson is that regardless of the if the teacher moves a faster rate or slower rate, a group of students will ultimately be turned off by the process claiming that the teacher is moving too quickly and they dont understand, or too slowly, and the students are bored. Homeschooling directly combats with enigmatic catch-22 by tailoring one lesson at a time to one student at a time. A tailored one-on-one approach allows the student to absorb the lesson, regurgitate its elemental concepts, practice and move on. Extra attention can specifically be applied to individual points of confusion and similarly, less time can be spent when the student is quickly showing understanding at a proficient level or higher.

The richness of homeschool can be measured not only by test results, but testimonials. Students boast that they are able to surround themselves with a wider range and use of multimedia tools such as: youtube, computer programs, live experiments, and outdoor demonstrations. When all is said and done, textbooks are taught start to finish, an unheard of notion in traditional schools, students are stronger with their test scores, as a result of continual tailored instruction, and education is no longer viewed as a dreaded duty, but rather a meaningful pursuit because of a greater use of tied in outside applications.

New tutor observations

April 5th, 2012

I walked into Study Hut in Manhattan Beach not knowing what to expect as a new tutor going from private in-home tutoring to this local tutoring center. What I found was a team of outgoing, energetic, friendly, and intelligent tutors who loved what they do and did it very well! This was inspiring and exciting because they instantly accepted me into their Study Hut family and made a comfortable environment with all the resources I needed to tutor my students well. I was also welcomed by the home-like setting with comfortable chairs, big tables, art on the walls, and beach-y décor. I found that all the tutors have the same strive and determination to help and see their students grow to achieve their academic goals. It is as important to us tutors that all of our students pass their classes, stay organized, and reach their maximum potential. The one student to one tutor ratio really helped me connect with my students and learn a lot about what their hobbies, likes/dislikes, learning style, and most importantly what their goals are. I met many students from schools across the Manhattan School District and found that they all enjoyed their time spent here. I can tell that they really feel comfortable here as some students reach for candy in the drawer, pop a bag of popcorn in the microwave, and chat with other tutors and students. The tutors can really relate to the students because sometimes the tutors had the same high school teachers as the students have now. It’s interesting hearing how through the years the teacher is still doing the same assignments and field trips. Study Hut really provides an amazing learning experience for their students and we love to cheer our students on as they continue to succeed.

Tutoring for Home-Schoolers

May 30th, 2011

There are quite a few benefits to homeschooling—taking initiative, learning at your own pace, and making your own schedule. That said, one of the most important parts of learning is the inspiration and insight that an instructor can give you. They say you never really learn something unless you teach it—and that’s true! Tutoring has given me a stronger foundation in a number of subjects. But, more importantly, it’s about the relationship I make with my individual students. It’s so exciting to discover how to reach a student, to explain something and see a light bulb go off!

Recently, I have been working with Daniel, who is a home-schooled 7th grader. We work on the full range of subjects, from English to Math to French. He is a self-motivated and intelligent individual, who does a great job learning up and keeping up with the material. But it’s also a great thing that he complements his home-schooling by coming in to Study Hut a couple of times a week; it’s a good time to review his progress, discuss areas of concern, and tutor him on challenging lessons and topics.

Being home-schooled is a unique privilege, but I don’t believe it should fully replace the role of an instructor or individual tutor. Our parents are there for us as we grow up, teaching us everything from walking to driving, but sometimes it’s nice to have a different perspective on learning a subject. Or if you’re home-schooling yourself—it’s refreshing and invigorating to be inspired and motivated by someone else, who is enthusiastic about a subject and excited about teaching it. In today’s world, I think there’s more than enough room for one more mentor and role model in a child’s life.