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Mansfield Magazine

'Crunch Time' Stressful for Students

Feb 08, 2016 07:45AM ● Published by Nick Young

Photo courtesy of CollegeDegrees360 on Flickr.

“Will I pass?  Will I get all my assignments done?  I hate exams!  How will I handle next year?”   Anxiety levels are on the rise among both kids and parents as students head into “crunch time” at schools across the country.  While young people in middle schools and high schools are completing end-of-the-year assignments and preparing to write exams and standardized tests, the experts at GradePower Learning – a leading expert in preparing children for lifelong success – recommend that now is the ideal time to put new learning strategies to work.  Students who adopt effective study skills can reduce their stress, maximize the last few months of the school year, and build a foundation to do even better next year. 

GradePower Learning is the only supplemental educator that focuses on teaching children to learn how to learn, through a network of more than 100 locations across Canada and the USA. A customized supplemental education plan can be integral to advancing a student’s success.  GradePower Learning specialists conduct a personal assessment on every child who enrolls, and set a plan based on the student’s individual needs.  Just a couple of hours a week can make a lifelong and lasting difference in boosting a child’s learning abilities and self-esteem. 

Reach Out for Support

“It’s simply human nature to only reach out for support at critical times,” says Nick, Center Director/Owner of GradePower Learning Mansfield.  “We always receive a lot of calls from parents of pre-teens and teenagers at this time of year, and at GradePower Learning, we believe it’s never too early and never too late to teach children the fundamentals to help them succeed.  Our specialized programs help students cope with the stresses of this crucial time of year, and we take a preventative approach so students know how to preempt future challenges before they become issues.”   

Is it Too Late to Make a Difference? 

Every spring, many students wish they were in a better academic position, but is it too late to improve?  While there may not be any “quick fixes,” students can quickly pick up better learning habits that can immediately help them in the backstretch of the school year.  GradePower Learning’s vibrant website at www.oxfordlearning.com provides ideas and advice for both parents and children.  The experts at GradePower Learning offer the following suggestions to help students make a real and measurable difference: 

  1. Create an accurate study schedule.  Kids need to be realistic about their time. Parents should work with children to review the week’s activities and prepare an accurate study schedule. “Often families are surprised by how little time young people’s hectic schedules allow for schoolwork,” adds Nick.  “Once everything is written down, it becomes easier for kids and parents to work together to prioritize and accommodate the required study time.”  Once the study schedule is complete, families must make a commitment to review it every morning. 
  2. Talk to teachers.  Often, kids don’t understand where they are going wrong in school. “Young people need to ask their teachers about their weaknesses, and what recommendations teachers have on what they can do to improve before the year-end,” says Nick. “This is also an opportunity to investigate what skills they will need to develop for next year.” 
  3. Learn how to learn.  “We find the biggest problem is that kids don’t know how to learn,” says Nick. “They were never taught how to condense lecture notes or create effective study notes.  Our courses address immediate needs like how to write and study for exams, and they go well beyond tutoring with personal assessments and individual plans on helping kids learn how to learn.”  

Parents Are Stressed Too

At this time of year, parents need to check their own stress metre because often academic issues with children can cause stress levels to rise.  Unfortunately, most parents don’t know how to help, and they don’t have the skills to truly advance their children’s comprehension.  GradePower Learning’s proven courses can help to reduce stress for the whole family. 

'Summer' Better Learners

“Now is also the time to begin planning summer activities to keep youthful brains active during the summertime,” says Nick.  “Mental skills are like physical skills:  if you don’t exercise them, they get flabby.  Kids, who don’t keep their minds active over the summer months, simply forget how to learn.”  In fact, education experts estimate that kids who just “veg out” over the summer can lose an average of 40% of their learning momentum, and it can take four-to-five weeks for them to get back in the swing of school in September.  A firm learning foundation established during the summer months can make a real difference, particularly with primary students and those heading into high school.

“Exercising” your brain can be fun, and summertime is a great time to explore different avenues to learning: 

Reading and writing are great mind stretchers: 

  • This summer, have your child keep a daily journal of their thoughts. 
  • Switch up reading magazines, newspapers and novels with materials that pertain to next year’s schoolwork.  Discuss what your child is reading with them to keep the fun on-track.  
  • Use the Internet.  Ask kids to research an upcoming family purchase, vacation or the newest videos available.  You’ll involve them in reading and researching, and they’ll feel like they are making a useful contribution to the family. 

Use summer outings as a chance for learning:

For Elementary Students:

  • Beaches are fun places to discover interesting rocks, shells and different plants.  Challenge the kids to find the most interesting of each.
  • Visit a farm.  This is a great opportunity for kids to see where our food is grown and to interact with animals. 

For Teens:

  • Explore museums in your area.
  • Discover another culture through the library, books, cultural centres, neighbourhoods in major cities, and ethnic restaurants.

About GradePower Learning

Since being established in 1984, GradePower Learning has grown to include more than 100 learning centres across Canada and the United States.  GradePower Learning goes beyond tutoring to help students reach their learning potential, not just for one grade or one year but for a lifetime.  The unique programs teach children to learn how to learn.  Just one to two hours a week can make a world of difference in developing the right skills and habits to succeed, no matter what the subject or the grade level, and breaking the cycle of hiring tutors year-after-year. 

For more information, please contact Nick Young, at GradePower Learning - Mansfield, TX, at 817-458-4822 or nyoung@gradepowerlearning.com.

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