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How to Get Kids to Do What You Want

February 15, 2017

Without question the best way to get kids, all kids, to do what you want them to do is… Let them choose. If this is a new concept to you and you are dealing with a teenager I’m not going to guarantee it will work the first time. However, after a few trials you are likely to discover why this approach, while perhaps against our most visceral impulses, is far more effective than asking, telling or demanding a child to do what you want. Why it works? Quite simply, choice empowers. When students choose, they take responsibility, and when they take responsibility they follow through. Glorious isn’t it? Ok, so it doesn’t always work perfectly. But as you get more comfortable letting… Read More

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News Fatigue: Supporting Students in Challenging Times

February 2, 2017

by Nancy Weinstein Is there anyone not feeling news fatigue? It’s hard to watch and yet you must. If you are a parent or teacher the challenges are compounded. Quite simply, you can’t hide kids from the news. And lest we forget, kids are not little adults. In most cases, they are not socially, emotionally and intellectually ready to process the drama, trauma, and full implications of what they are hearing, seeing and reading. Our solution: business news. Yes, business news. The networks like CNBC, Bloomberg TV, and Fox Business that cover the daily markets. While their programming of charts, graphs, and, let’s face it, [mostly] men in suits might not garner the same enthusiasm of general news, you can rely on them for factual, bi-partisan information across… Read More

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A Smarter Way to Improve ACT/SAT Test Scores

January 19, 2017

Here’s one true thing you will rarely hear from test prep tutors, “All the strategies and practice in the world won’t help if you don’t know how your child learns best.” If your child’s scores don’t match your reasonable expectations, it’s highly likely that there’s something in his test-taking approach that is holding him back. And more often than not, it’s something that he can’t articulate and your tutor won’t figure out by just watching him. The traditional test prep approach is to identify the types of problems where the student makes mistakes. Then tutors either (a) re-teach the skills that should have been learned in school and/or (b) give tons and tons of similar practice problems and hope that the actual test… Read More

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A Teachable Moment

January 18, 2017

  Whether or not we want it, life has given us a teachable moment. Yes, the inauguration. Unlike years past, the political climate, coupled with 24 hour news, means that even some of our youngest children are navigating issues around leadership, ethics and fairness. Which means that if you are not having these difficult discussions with them, they are very likely having them with their peers, on the playground, and yes, (gasp!) on social media. Children are hearing (and in some cases experiencing) very adult topics through the lens of a child’s eyes and ears. That filter could leave them blissfully unaware. Or it could take them down paths less desirable by believing exaggerated claims of peers, overhearing comments out of context, or experiencing their own… Read More

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After the Denial: What to do if your child didn’t get into the gifted program

January 11, 2017

by Dr. Wendy Matthews Were you disappointed to learn that your child didn’t qualify for your school’s gifted program? Does this fly in the face of anything you know to be true about your child’s capabilities and needs for additional enrichment? If your child was not accepted, you still have options. First, you need to decide whether you are sure the program is right for your child. Do some research. Learn about: (a) the quality of the program, (b) the amount of time involved, and (c) potential programming conflicts. Try to get a sense of the trade-offs for your child and for your family. Consider, too, the time, financial resources, and emotional reserves required of you to advocate for your child…. Read More

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