Education There is no greater gateway to success in this country than through education. When my brother, John, went to the Coast Guard Academy, one of the first things they taught him was about the fundamental elements of studying. Things that we take for granted and assume that students are well versed in. This assumption, however, is almost never true. The formalized instruction of these concepts can make a world of difference. They did for my brother who went on to graduate from the USCGA at the top of his class.
Where Do You Start? What does it take to change the perception of a student? You have to change their basic belief system. How do you convince them that academic success is within their grasp?
They must first believe that a more effective way of learning is possible. A lot of students come from families where they don't completely understand the importance of education. So why should they? This is not only the most necessary step to take, but it is also the hardest to conquer.
What are the Elements of Learning? As part of the program, the students are taught some basic concepts from 2 primary categories:
GoverningPhilosophies - Be as good as your word.
- Have a plan, work the plan.
- Boil it down.
- Perfect practice makes perfect.
- The universe is infinite, not finite.
- Are you a leader or a follower?
Practical Tools - Are your learning abilities more audio/visual/mixed.
- The meaning and importance of goal setting and planning.
- Memory retention as a function of time.
- Pure listening. - Introduction to speed reading. - The affects of study environment on learning.
- The relationship between study and testing environments. - Effective note taking - when to listen and when to write. - How and when to use extra help. - When to raise your hand.
How is Accomplished? I lead by example. The program provides simple exercises to highlight these concepts and reinforces them with repetiton and purpose. Students need to know exactly what they can expect from mastering these concepts. Nothing helps to accomplish this more than small, incremental successes.
This program was prototyped at Marlborough High School during a 5 week program with classroom training for 1 hour per week. Even though it was a short amount of time, every single student in the program agreed that if they knew before what they know now, they would be doing better in school than they were and would have more opportunities available to them upon graduation. You can't ask for a better recommendation than that.
We are now working with the folks at 7 Hills Charter Public School about the possibility of putting the program into practice there. Stay tuned for more information.
If you would like to know more, please contact us.