Transitioning to High School

February 22nd, 2015

George comes into Study Hut every week to work with his tutor Allie. Allie has been George’s tutor since he began coming to Study Hut. This year George made the tricky transition from middle school to high school. With Allie’s help, keeping his good grades was a breeze. She taught him how to balance all the work that came with his new course load.

Allie and George mostly worked on Geometry and English. Like most students, George was having difficulty grasping the concept of graphing. Plotting the points on and x and y graph was easy enough, but learning all the different forms of equations and finding the x and y intercepts were hard. Allie explained the difference between point-slope form and slope-intercept form. Point-intercept form is useful when you are only given two points on the line and no other information. However, slope-intercept form is more useful. You can immediately find the slope of the line and the y-intercept from a line’s equation that is written in slope-intercept form. Allie also showed George how to find the x-intercept of a line. To find the x-intercepts, you plug in zero for y and then solve the equation for x.

Allie also helped George develop his essay writing. She taught him the proper structure for a five-paragraph essay, as well as ways to create a strong thesis statement. They also worked on creating smoother transitions and engaging commentary for his concrete details. George did amazing and received all A’s and one B his first semester.

Middle School Tutoring

February 16th, 2015

Kyle comes in to Study Hut for tutoring with his tutor Richard every week. They work on English and math. In math, Kyle was having a lot of trouble with graphing. Kyle and Richard would go through the homework together and make sure that Kyle understood how to get the right answer. They went over homework every week to make sure that Kyle knew exactly what was going on in class. Kyle went into his final confident that he would ace it. He got a one hundred percent and had the highest score in his entire grade!

 

Richard and Kyle also work on English together. Vocabulary was challenging for Kyle. Richard taught him ways to remember the words, like using the word in context to fully understand the definition, and how not to mix up similar looking words on the test.   Richard and Kyle have also been working on improving Kyle’s essay skills. Going from ideas to a strong, well-thought-out paper was incredibly difficult. Richard helped Kyle work on his entire essay writing process.   They started with brainstorming. A lot of students skip this step and just jump right into writing their essay, but this leads to them missing out on potentially better topics. Structure was another important factor they worked on. Kyle had great ideas, but was not conveying his message as clearly as he could have in his paper. Thanks to Richard, Kyle got a one hundred percent on his English final and received the second highest grade in his class!

The Rigors of PV Curriculum from a USC Alum

April 1st, 2014

The Rigors of PV Curriculum from a USC Alum

As a former student at Palos Verdes High School ( www.pvhigh.com ), I have found that the Study Hut curriculum for PVHS Math, Biology, Chemistry, Spanish, and English are perfect for the PV High curriculum. The PV school district’s expectations for Math classes, ranging from Geometry to Calculus, are very high and the homework and study workloads show this. At Study Hut ( www.studyhut.com ), I give one-on-one tutoring to help students understand and manage their challenging Algebra, Algebra 2, and Geometry workloads. Adding to this, most students are required to take Biology and Chemistry. From my experience as a Natural Science major at USC ( www.usc.edu ), I can personally attest to the very high level and challenging requirements that Palos Verdes high school students face.

At Study Hut, I help students in understanding the difficult materials, as well as in preparing for their tests (whether they be finals, AP, SATs, or SAT 2). Spanish 1 and Spanish 2 are also requirements for PVHS students and during my time at PV High, I remember that many students also take Spanish 3 and Spanish 4. These classes can be especially problematic for students who have never taken Spanish before or are not used to the verbal and written demands of the classes. At Study Hut, I really enjoy helping students improve their Spanish vocabulary, as well as their grammar and pronunciation. With all of these subjects, it really works to my benefit that I have taken the classes that I tutor at PV High (a lot of times with the same teachers), so I have a good understanding of the expectations and style of work that PVHS requires for a good grade. Adding to this, the atmosphere and tutoring style encouraged at Study Hut meshes well with Palos Verdes High School students and generates very positive results.

From iLead to AVID, Study Hut covers ground in the South Bay!

March 6th, 2014

From iLead to AVID, Study Hut covers ground in the South Bay!

Study Hut has had the privilege to extend our tutoring services to local high schools in the South Bay, including South High, Palos Verdes High School and Palos Verdes Peninsula High School. We are able to do this by orchestrating in-class programs like AVID (http://www.avid.org/) in the Palos Verdes Peninsula Unified School District and ILEAD through the Torrance Unified School District. In a typical AVID or ILEAD class, Study Hut will send a number of tutors (typically ranging from four to eight) who each specialize in variety of academic subjects. Our tutors then have the unique opportunity to break the class into smaller groups of students based on subject each student feels that he or she need the most help with.
Last Tuesday was an awesome day at both South High and Peninsula! We arrived at South High for ILEAD at 8am to offer additional tutoring on late start mornings. We then separated the students into a “Math and Science” classroom, and an “English, History and Foreign Language” classroom. Tori and I were put in charge of English, History and Languages room. After an hour of answering questions about everything from World War I and the differences between Preterite and Imperfect in Spanish, our manager Justin was nice enough to take us out to a quick breakfast to refuel before we headed up to PVPHS to tutor in AVID for their third and fourth periods.In AVID we like to take a more hands on approach by encouraging the students to break into groups and take turns writing their questions on the board. Their peers then use their notes and textbooks to help them solve their problem. In my English groups in AVID, we had some remarkable discussions about Animal Farm (my favorite) and determining Direct Objects vs. Predicate Nominatives.

Scholar Quiz 2013!! June 2nd @ the Manhattan Beach Country Club!

June 4th, 2013

Scholar Quiz 2013 – Blog part 1

We had a great turnout at our first ever Study Hut Foundation Parent/Teacher Scholar Quiz on Sunday June 2nd at the Manhattan Beach Country Club! 

We had 16 teams participate at our event, and the event lasted from 4pm until 8pm. The winning team’s name was WB and the Funky 3. 

The teams were parents and teachers from all the surrounding areas including Manhattan Beach, Redondo Beach, and Hermosa Beach. Many teachers from the schools participated including: Palos Verdes, West High School, Manhattan Beach Middle School, and Mira Costa High School. 

The questions that were asked ranged from all different subjects, including English, History, Geography, Pop Culture, Math and many more! 

We had a silent auction as well which included restaurant certificates, jewelry, signed memorabilia from the Kings Hockey Team, cupcakes from Susie Cakes, and many more. 

Many local merchants donated silent auction iteams, including but not limited to wine, plants, hair appointments, free tutoring sessions, and music lessons. 

We also had raffle tickets that we sold ($5 for 1 or $20 for 5 tickets). The people who won, received a trip for 2 nights (air fare not included) – and they can pick from over 50 different destinations. 

We served Hors d’œuvres while the event was going on including but not limited too: Quiche and dumplings – and we also had a cash bar outside that overlooked the tennis courts. 

If you would like to donate to the Study Hut Foundation, you can log on to our website at StudyHutFoundation.org and click “Donate” 

As of right now we have 13 students that attend the Study Hut Foundation and next year we are hoping to bump it up to 50 students. We are seeing improvements already in their grades and have changed the way that the students view going to school. 

Thanks to all the teams that participated! Congrats to the winners! Thanks again to everyone that came out and supported our event! We really appreciate it!

Stay tuned for Part 2 and more pictures in the next blog! 

A proud tutor story!

May 1st, 2013

I tutor a girl who is in the 7th grade and she has a twin sister – both in the same classes. These 2 girls have been struggling in all their classes and have not been receiving the best grades (though as a tutor I knew they could do much better).

We bought the girls planners – so that they could get organized and write all their assignments down instead of using only their IPAD. We really want to help them get their grades up before the end of the year – and I feel like it can happen! I tutor one of the twins and another tutor helps her sister.

For many students, it’s only one or two classes they are focusing on – but these girls need help in all their classes – English, Spanish, Science, Social Studies, and Math.

I am very well versed in Spanish and math – my two best subjects – and not so well in English, Social Studies, and Science – but it’s nice to tutor these subjects – not only to help my student but also to reteach myself things that I have forgotten about over the years.

So together, my student and I have made a good plan and we are on the same page – with preparing ahead – doing flashcards, section outlines, and section reviews right when she finds out she has a test.

Last week we knew she had a Science test – so we prepared very early instead of her waiting until the last minute and not studying and also not telling me she had a test.

We worked on the Cardiovascular system and studied all about the heart, veins, lungs, capillaries, arteries, and many other interesting subjects. 

Long story short – she came in today and told me she got a 91% on her test and her sister got an 83%. She told me she wanted to scream with excitement when she got her test. Today, we then studied for her Social Studies test for Thursday and she really wants to get another good grade!!!

AVID year-end site team meetings!!

April 18th, 2013

What is AVID?

AVID is an Advancement Via Individual Determination: A 4-year elective that helps kids get ready for a 4-year college experience. 
AVID is a bi-weekly tutorial which helps kids keep their GPA up, SAT and ACT tutoring starting in 10th grade, and the rest of the time is focused on expanding their horizons and getting them ready for college.

From their website it says: AVID, Advancement Via Individual Determination, is a college readiness system for elementary through higher education that is designed to increase schoolwide learning and performance. The AVID College Readiness System (ACRS) accelerates student learning, uses research based methods of effective instruction, provides meaningful and motivational professional learning, and acts as a catalyst for systemic reform and change.

AVID began in 1980 by Mary Catherine Swanson, then-head of the English department at San Diego’s Clairemont High School. The federal courts issued an order to desegregate the city’s schools, bringing large numbers of inner city students to suburban schools. While applauding the decision, Swanson wondered how these underserved students would survive at academically acclaimed Clairemont High.

Her answer was AVID, an academic elective. But it’s more than a program – it’s a philosophy: Hold students accountable to the highest standards, provide academic and social support, and they will rise to the challenge.

AVID is having their year-end site team meetings. 
Peninsula High School’s meeting was today and Palos Verdes High School is tomorrow
the AVID year-end site team meetings are where parents, students, teachers, and tutors get together to discuss how the year went
and discuss goals for next year. 
The Peninsula High School Avid seniors set a record: 100% of the kids that applied to a 4-year school were accepted to at least one.
They had a record high for applications for next year’s freshman that is. 
The AVID Program is increasing the amount of tutors they are going to have next year – so the ratio will be 7 students to 1 tutor in tutorials.
This year it was about 12 tutors to 1 student. 
They also have a record high number of kids going to their overnight college trip – which is where 41 kids spend 2 days to go see  Cal Poly San Luis Obispo and University of California Santa Barbara. 

STAR Testing!

April 16th, 2013

Let us help your student put the “Star” in STAR Testing!!! 

Each spring, students in grades two through eleven take a STAR test. The STAR Program looks at how well schools and students are performing. Students take tests in math, reading, writing, science, and history. Teachers and parents can use test results to improve student learning.

The STAR Program includes four tests: the California Standards Tests, the California Modified Assessment, the California Alternate Performance Assessment, and the Standards-based Tests in Spanish.

The STAR Program for 2010–11 has four components:

  • California Alternate Performance Assessment (CAPA)—The CAPA is an alternate performance assessment to the CSTs in English-language arts (ELA), mathematics, and science. It is an individually administered assessment for pupils with significant cognitive disabilities who have an individualized education program (IEP).
  • California Modified Assessment (CMA)—The CMA is an alternate assessment to the CSTs in ELA, mathematics, and science for eligible pupils who have an IEP and meet the CMA eligibility criteria adopted by the SBE.
  • California Standards Tests (CST)—The CSTs are criterion-referenced tests that assess the California content standards in ELA, mathematics, science, and history-social science.
  • Standards-based Tests in Spanish (STS)—The STS are criterion-referenced tests aligned to the California content standards for reading/language arts and mathematics.

STAR Testing is just around the corner with test being given between April 17th and May 3rd, depending on your school.

STAR Testing is important because:

– Helps place kids in the appropriate class each year

– Used to appropriate funds in the district

– Can identify subject weaknesses in a student

– Colleges are starting to look at them to help determine admittance

– Some teachers give extra credit for doing well. 

We have access to past tests and can help your student prepare to do their best and knock it out of the park. 

Don’t wait… book your appointment today (7 days a week)! 

Contact samantha@studyhut.com or call 1-310-546-2408

My tutoring sessions from this week!

March 15th, 2013

Here at the Study Hut we have a unique teaching method that seems to work very well. At the Study Hut we hope to empower students. Here’s what it says on our website:

“Our tutors are young, local, and experienced.  We offer one-on-one subject tutoring, SAT test prep, and a variety of other services.  Students love coming to Study Hut because it’s cool and they see results. There are many large, impersonal tutoring companies out there. Study Hut is proud to say that we’re not one of them.

Instead of using a “one-size-fits-all” method, we focus on each student’s unique learning style and teach to his or her strengths. Our tutors emphasize progress and growth for all students at all levels—no matter how unmotivated or defeated they may start out feeling.

Our highly trained tutors have all graduated from local high schools and universities. Study Hut tutors have experience teaching every subject you can think of, from elementary school through AP high school courses, we have done and seen it all.”

I am one of the tutors here at the Study Hut and proud to work for such a great company. I normally tutor elementary and middle school students and truly enjoying working with each of my students! Here’s a story about one of my personal tutoring sessions!

I tutor a little girl whose a 1st grader and together we work on her homework packet. Each week she has a different number of packets… each for a different subject including but not limited to – Math, Social Science, Literature, and English. She mostly struggles with math (subtraction)… and refers to the numbers as “big numbers” – which make her nervous. During tutoring we work on the homework packet and if she gets it done early we play Word Bingo since Bingo is her favorite game.

Some of the assignments in the packet include coloring different pictures and words – which the little girl certainly enjoys! We work on pronunciation of words, spelling words, definitions, and other fun assignments.

The little girl also has started to learn Spanish, so we work on Spanish vocabulary as well and basic phrases every week. I write the words down for her in English with the Spanish translation and she always highlights the English words with a highlighter. She studies them at home and does a great job!

Every student you tutor is different and they each work well in their own ways.

Free Tutoring at MBMS on Wednesday Mornings!

March 5th, 2013

Every Wednesday at 8 a.m. – Study Hut Co-Owner SP, MB Officer Manager Sam, and Nicole go to Manhattan Beach Middle School to tutor students for an hour for free during the school’s late start. They have been going to the Manhattan Beach Middle School since the middle of January and each week more students attend the one hour free tutor hour. The tutoring takes place in Mr. Lub’s Classroom (Room 103). One of the Study Hut tutors made a sign to put at the middle school on Wednesday mornings letting students know where the tutoring will take place so hopefully each week more students will attend.

We started the first week with a small turn out, but each week a few more students show up. This past week they had 15 students – the most students they’ve had yet. The tutors bring doughnuts with them – which all the students look forward to. Along with the tutors, the school supplies a cart of books so you can work on any subject you need. Many of the same students come consistently every week, allowing the tutors to get to know the students on a more personal basis.

The tutors have had students come in for help in every subject including but not limited to Spanish, English, Math, Reading, and Science. The tutors have worked on many assignments with students including book reports, homework, studying for tests, organizational skills, arranging classes for High School, and many others. Usually during the hour, a few students work on the same assignments which makes it easier to  help more students at one time.

Along with the tutors, MBMS also sends in classroom aids to help during the hour and make sure that everything is running smoothly.

Again, the tutoring takes place in Mr. Lubs Room (103) from 8 – 9 a.m. during the late start hour! We hope to see you there!