Avoid Summertime Slip

Summer can be quite an important period of time that most families may not be utilizing correctly.  Summer is actually the period of time where academic skills and concepts that students have bolstered all semester long begin to dull the most, or “slip,” as summer in America is the longest academic holiday.  For students where this is especially problematic year to year, the summer is an ideal way to stay “in-practice,” review, and enrich.  After reinforcing concepts throughout the summer, the segway to new material is much more seamless.  This, in turn, creates a confidence that allows for these students to perform at their best.  This requires that regimented time is setup for the student to create realistic review goals for the duration of summer.

To avoid summertime slip students should first know which professor is teaching their upcoming fall course of interest. From there they can research old syllabi of the class or reach out to the professor and ask for what textbook they are going to be using. Once they have this information, students can get ahead start on the course by getting intimately familiar with the earliest content. All of the questions at the end of each section and chapter should be answered completely with key themes being understood.

Another powerful method of learning during summertime is project-based learning.  Check out this really informative article to learn more:

https://www.theknowledgeroundtable.com/promoting-summer-growth-through-project-based-learning/

 

 

Must Have Apps for Math and the Sciences

Math and the sciences can be quite difficult courses to take on.  This is particularly true for those who are handling multiple AP courses simultaneously.  The rigor of the courses, the amount of homework, and the breadth of the material all make staying on top of tests and homework assignments quite an undertaking, and all of this doesn’t even take into account studying for the AP’s.  While tutoring is a great option to connect all the dots, self-help practices are always a great option to utilize.  Here is a list of amazing apps for those taking math or science courses, or merely studying for standardized tests:

  1. Knowvio LLC puts out an incredible line of apps that follow the naming structure of [Course Name] X (e.g. Physics X).  These apps are absolutely fantastic.  They include a table-of-contents-style interface that allows you to hone in on exactly the material you want to study.  Each section includes video tutorials on the concepts for you to watch, a formula sheet with that outlines each formula discussed in those sections, and a scratch pad tab that allows you to write over any page you are currently looking at.  Check them out with the links below!
  2. Photomath, Inc. offers an app by the same name, Photomath, which does what it would sound like.  It solves math problems by taking a photo of the problem.  In real-time, the app detects the text you’re looking at and does a fairly decent job of converting it to a math problem in the app.  It will then solve the problem step-by-step, giving you the ability to learn how to solve problems on-the-fly.  This is also great for the students who just don’t have the time for a tutoring session.  It will not replace the amount of help you can get from a tutor, but it will be a lifesaver for those few times where you just need to know how to do a problem immediately!  Check it out from the link below!
  3. Desmos has a graphing calculator by the same name, Desmos, that is really amazing if you’ve left your TI-83/84 or nSpire at home or have somehow lost it in the moment.  This will allow your phone to take on the roll of your graphing calculator.  You can plot multiple functions, and even find intersections.  You can graph in multiple modes, and even set up constant in front of variables that include an associated slider.  This means the equation y=Asin(Bx+C)+D can be quickly changed to y=-3sin(2x)+1 or y=2sin(-3x)-4 without having to type in a new formula.  Simply drag the slider for the constants A, B, C, and D to various values and watch how the graph changes in real-time!  This really helps give an intuitive understanding of how various functions work.  Check it out with the link below!
  4. Quick Learning LLC offers a great app for those who want a periodic table with them wherever they are without having to google search or open their books each time.  Lewis dot structures are provided, as well as other information about the element.  Color coding is done by valence orbital type (e.g. s, p, d, and f) and the wiki page for each element is available within the app too.  This a great free app for any chemistry student.  There are other paid apps that have astounding capabilities, like writing chemical equations and finding molar masses, but they aren’t free.  If you’re in chemistry, grab this one with the link below!

Strategy – The Importance of Starting Off Strong

If you don’t want to end up looking like the student in this posting’s picture, then starting off the semester with laser-focus and drive will allow you to score the easier points coming from the introductory material before the course kicks into high gear.  As the course progresses, newer and more intricate material will be introduced that won’t be quite as easy to digest.  Midway through the course, you will be challenged to think and integrate more and more concepts into your assignments and exams.  Ultimately, you don’t want to be on the fence about your grade in the later parts of the course and wishing you had done a little better early on.  Follow these tips to lock in those early points:

 

Just Getting Your Feet Wet – Dive Right In:

Even though the course may have just begun, and the material hasn’t picked up yet, it doesn’t mean that you can rest easy until the difficulty picks up.  Make sure you dive head first into the material and engage in class discussion as much as possible from the start.  Often times the lack of difficulty will make students think, “I’ve got this.”  This is where they will most likely be caught off guard by some of the curveballs that, while not extremely difficult detect, could end up dragging their scores down initially.  Don’t let this happen to you otherwise, you’ll be sacrificing some of the easier points in the course.

Studying Habits – Structure and Discipline:

Don’t think of studying as something you have to do in large chunks.  Studying little bits throughout your day, but more consistently, is better than having huge chunks of studying that occur more infrequently.  Most people begin to lose their attention after about 30-45 minutes, which is startling considering how long the average class is.  This is probably why we need to go home and study in the first place…we just couldn’t absorb it the first time.  Instead of spending hours and hours at the end of your day after school, try spending some of your break time on campus to study bits and pieces of the material, then finish what’s left at home.  Don’t forget to keep doing this daily.  You will find that your overall stress will be reduced and you won’t feel burnt out at the end of the day.

Communication – It’s Still Key:

If you aren’t understanding a concept, or just can’t seem to find a way to put it all together in terms of the bigger picture, don’t stay silent.  You’d be surprised how many students say that they understand concepts when they actually don’t out of fear or embarrassment.  It’s okay to struggle, and part of growing up and learning is how to communicate that you need help.  Teachers generally enjoy helping students, but if you’re worried about disrupting the flow, or are too shy, then meet with them after class.  At the very least you can collaborate with your classmates, as this is another form of learning.  You’ll gain friends along the way!  Find a way to introduce yourself to your fellow classmates early on instead of waiting until you need the help.  This can come off looking like you are not genuine in your desire to get to know them.

Outside Assistance – The Power of Tutoring:

Hiring a tutor can make all the difference when it comes easing the burden of taking on new information in high volume.  It’s just not possible for teachers to truly give what tutors can achieve one-on-one.  Make sure to meet with a tutor regularly for challenging courses, not only when you are already struggling.  The same reasoning applies here as with earning those easy points early on in the semester.  Consistently meeting with your tutor helps ensure that you really are grasping the concepts by having a “second line of defense.”  The tutor basically tests you before each and every exam, allowing you to see your strengths and weaknesses to formulate proper study regimens.

Grasping the Concepts in the Chapter

In most courses in math and the sciences, you will find both subject material and example problems scattered throughout the chapters.  Today, students are quite busy and rarely read the texts that their assignments come from.  The unfortunate side effect: most times students lose context for each of the concepts being discussed, which can cause extreme confusion when trying to combine multiple concepts from a chapter into a single problem.

Not all the ways of old in school/education are outdated.  This lost art of reading through the chapter’s example problems can help give clarity on when and how certain formulas should be used.  Often times, 75% of the homework assigned will be related to these example problems in some way.  It is only the challenge questions at the end of the section that require more than what can be gleaned from reading the example problems.  Make sure you read these example problems to gain more confidence in, as well as comprehension of, the concepts that need to be used together in order to effectively solve problems.

If you cannot seem to grasp how to attempt a problem by reading these example problems scattered throughout the text, then try consulting your notes for any little extras the teacher may have added outside of the text.  Though this is rare, it is becoming more common as teachers are customizing their courses to include homework outside texts.

Dual Enrollment for High School Students

With a student’s ever increasing busy life, more and more families are opting to dual enroll their high school student. But what does dual enrollment entail and what are some of the things families should consider?

The most common use case is when a student is either taking an online course in addition to their physical high school environment. Advanced high school students sometimes enroll at a local community college to get ahead or to take classes that are not offered at their school. The latter situation usually requires the student to take a placement exam at the community college to ensure that the high school student is capable of the course’s rigor. Online high school course enrollment is usually a pretty simple process that requires a signature from the student’s high school counselor and transcript.

There are a couple of benefits for dual enrollment that push families to opt for it. One benefit is for students with a very busy and time demanding schedule (mostly athletes). These students typically sign up for an online class that they can do on their own time and pace to meet their other obligations. Another benefit for dual enrollment is for students that are struggling at their high school in a particular course so they opt to take it online as they can have tutors to help them work at a steady pace. The final benefit for dual enrollment is to take classes that aren’t offered at the student’s high school. These students often want to accumulate college level credits so they don’t have to take these courses in college or they want to take a special interest course (ie., virology) that isn’t offered at their high school.

Dual enrollment can potentially affect the college application process.  If the student is taking an advanced course at a community college and getting an A then, yes, it for sure helps during the admissions process as this signals to the admissions counselors that the student is college ready! However, dual enrollment with mediocre grades won’t necessarily help nor hurt the application. Overall, dual enrollment isn’t a stand out good/bad flag in an application, but A grades are always the deciding factor. So, making sure that a student that is dually enrolled succeeds is critical.

Finally, when students are completing their college freshman application there is a section where they have to report all grades and transcripts from all institutions. Here they indicate their dual enrollment for whatever term(s) it was (ie., 10th grade spring term) as well as report the grade(s) received. They have to submit transcripts from the institution and their physical high school. So, a lot of attention must be taken to ensure that all of the colleges receive both their high school and second institution’s transcripts or else their college application will be marked as incomplete.

Revise and Practice for Success

It’s important to realize that with all the information you are being bombarded with, it is unreasonable to expect perfect memorization on the first attempt!  Follow the following tips to help increase retention and stay practiced:

Notes, Notes, and More Notes:

If notes are your bread and butter, but sometimes you feel like you are writing and not retaining, then this routine may be just for you! Part of the problem is that notes can be quite lengthy, so it is important to realize that storing and recalling all of the information is just not possible after writing them only once.  Some people resort to “studying” from their notes.  This isn’t a bad idea, but what can be even more helpful is setting a nightly reminder to rewrite any notes you’ve taken that day in school.  Rewriting your notes reinforces the material in your mind and allows for more successful memory storage.  

Even more helpful is to trim the notes each time you write them to make them even more efficient.  Eliminating excess information condenses the information allowing you to memorize shorter sets of information.  The continual rewriting process also strengthens the connections in your brain that are related to the information you’re storing.

Flashcards for Formulas/Dates/Names:

If you are having troubles in math memorizing the formulas you need for an upcoming test, or dates and names just seem to slip through your fingers each week, then flashcards can be a great way to reinforce the material in a fun and dynamic way.
Services like Quizlet are indispensable for students who wish to find ways to create flashcards on the go.  Throw your terms and definitions, equations, as well as names and dates on Quizlet and you can begin studying in a number of ways.  You can even have Quizlet prepare “tests” that show you definitions first, propose fill-in-the-blank questions, or create multiple choice exams to help reinforce the material.

The Power of Routines

If you are having issues getting prepared for tests, doing your homework, or even managing your social life, then you could probably benefit from learning how to leverage the power of routines!  Think about your favorite performer, athlete, or musician.  Each one of these people has learned to adhere to some sort of routine in order for them to maintain their success.  Athletes train regularly and then are evaluated to check for techniques that may need improving, musicians practice their sets for hours upon hours, and performers practice in front of mirrors to have a better understanding of how they come across to their audience.  The point is that these professionals are utilizing some sort of routine!

Routines aren’t meant to be something that burdens you or makes you think, “what a drag!”  Routines are meant to help you stay on track with things you want or need to do while allowing you to have the freedoms that constantly seem to get in the way of your responsibilities or goals.  Try setting up a task that you frequently have issues with on a routine, and make sure to stick to it.  Start with something small that you know you can follow through with, and then add more to routines as you see fit!

Example:  If you find it difficult to memorize terms for vocab tests, make it a routine to study the list with flashcards each night for 30 minutes until the night before the test.  This will take minimal time and reduce the stress of cramming the night before.

21st Century Education

Today’s modern technology enables even the most distant students to be connected to the most qualified educators in the world. With the internet, learning now has no boundaries, and no matter where a student is, or when a student needs help, AirTutors is available. With just one click, students can instantaneously be connected to the most qualified teacher in his/her subject so they will never be stuck on a homework problem again. With this education-on-demand approach, students are assuaged of any test or homework anxiety they may have, allowing them to then perform to their best ability in a session and beyond.

Technology is becoming incorporated into people’s lives more than ever before, and its introduction now comes at an early age.  Parents give their toddlers iPads to distract them as they are dining at a restaurant or taking a long drive, so why not use those same mobile devices to learn?

Online education offers many benefits that far surpass the loss of physical presence. First and foremost, when teaching is done online, students must find a quiet place to join the session, and by having the tutor isolated to a screen, the student is forced to pay attention. Secondly, headphones offer a quiet environment without any outside sounds distracting their focus, which solves a problem that many students have.  Finally, with online education, students are no longer confined to a specific geographic location to have a session with their preferred tutor. In addition, since there are no travel logistics, learning can be scheduled more quickly and function as the savior for a student with an impending test.

Most people are either auditory learners, visual learners, or learn from a combination of both, and online tutoring feeds precisely into both learning schemes. By reinforcing and strengthening listening skills to the student, and using an interactive whiteboard or writing platform, collaborative visual learning becomes a breeze.

For today’s student, the requirements for getting into colleges are ever increasing, thereby increasing both the academic workload and extracurricular activity. In addition to school, students are also involved in athletics and clubs activities, and sometimes these rigorous schedules rival the schedules of many CEO’s. As a result, online tutoring provides an excellent way for students to instantaneously connect, learn, and carry on with their next task at any time they are available; work can be done anytime, anywhere

Kids love technology. Parents love academic success. Air Tutors seamlessly combines both elements with cutting edge technology and the industry’s best educators. Having witnessed the amazing results of online technology, we would love to share the success with you!

Educate The World

We may not always be in the same city, but we are always here for you.

Air Tutors is a company founded by tutors for students with the goal of providing academic prowess and inspirational mentorship by utilizing the most cutting edge technology. We bring decades of teaching and tutoring experience, and have also mentored and coached many students into discovering  and utilizing their own intellectual gifts.

Tutelage is a very fragile process that we handle meticulously because we know that asking for academic assistance is difficult to do, regardless of age. When faced with scholastic challenges, many individuals become academically stunted due to their inability to seek clarity. However, when the learning process is promoted, fun, and engaging, amazing academic results can be attained.

From this level of comprehension, each one of our tutors has a mentor-minded pedagogy designed to be a beacon of positivity in your child’s life. Every tutor at Air Tutors has not only been trained at a top tier university, but they are also passionate individuals who come from all walks of life. We are young, fun, diverse, and not only want to be a source of knowledge for the students we teach, but also an inspiration for them to look up to.

We have spent years learning and teaching in the trenches, and understand the anxieties that come from both student and parent. Air Tutors is here to be the medium through which students find academic success, and parents receive the reassurance that their children are in the best capable hands possible. We are a premium service with a premium level of care for both: student and parent.

We hope you will entrust us to help your child achieve his/her true potential. Please, feel more than welcome to contact us and we would love to help out any way we can!