Test Anxiety: The Ins, Outs, and Everything In-between

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Test anxiety can be extremely difficult, some would even say paralyzing. And as we all know, testing before you’re ready or properly informed can create all kinds of problems in the future. As WellMind.com, a mental health and wellness awareness site says “While many people experience some degree of stress and anxiety before and during exams, test anxiety can actually impair learning and hurt test performance” But the good news is that there are several ways to help prevent test anxiety, and what’s more, there are even ways to help get rid of it for good!

Let’s start by addresses what test anxiety looks like and the behaviors that surround it before we dive into the ways that you can help students get out from underneath of it.

According to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America, symptoms of test anxiety can be physical, behavioral, cognitive, and emotional. That means that when students are preparing to take a test, if they suffer from this kind of anxiety then it will not always look the same with each student.

The physical reaction can include sweating, a dry mouth, butterflies in the stomach (yes, those are real!) shaking and in some extremely rare cases, students can also get physically sick if they are starting to test. The bottom line is that this kind of reaction, while it might seem dramatic from an outside perspective, is a major pain point for students everywhere. It doesn’t just come from one class or subject, it comes from underlying issues and it’s not always easy to address them if you don’t know where to look.

There’s also a long list of emotional symptoms that are directly related to test anxiety. It can cause low self-esteem, depression, fear of moving forward, anger, as well as feeling belittled or even belittled themselves. The physical symptoms of course can be alarming and scary to watch. But the emotional reactions are even worse because we can’t see them.

Now that we know what test anxiety can look and feel like for different students I every classroom, let’s talk about the ways that students can get a grasp on their anxieties and be able to study and take any test or exam without the smallest doubt in themselves or their abilities.

One small thing to take into consideration is being prepared. Of course, that sounds like an obvious answer, but sometimes that feeling that weighs most students down can be completely changed if they feel like they know exactly what’s going to be on the test and they have studied and gone over the information over and over.

Getting a good night’s sleep can also help relieve some testers feelings of the unknown. Being well rested can help with the focus of the test, and it also allows student to have a level and clear head. Again, while these solutions might seem very simple, they can and do work in a lot of cases.

Another solution, and this is a big one, is accepting mistakes. There’s a lot of pressure. Not just in a classroom and school setting, but once student get out into the real world, the path is not always going to be paved. So, a great thing to remind yourself or your child, is that no one is perfect and there is nothing wrong with that. You don’t have to get every answer right, but as long as you are focused and give it your all, you’re going to do great no matter what.

The last solution that is important to address and talk about is for students that feel like basic tips and helpful advice just isn’t enough. Having an emergency test anxiety plan is a solution that might just help those who are suffering from extreme anxiety. Basically, what this plan tells us is that there is a small list of things that induvial can do to really talk themselves out of having a kind of anxiety attack. This can be used in normal scenarios as well, but for the sake of this article, let’s think about the ways in would positively affect students. It’s just a small list of actions that one can take. Things like taking a deep breath, mentally telling yourself that you’re okay, accepting the anxiety as normally and not singling yourself out, and lastly, squeezing your hand into a small fist and then releasing it, all of these things are proven to help students who are really struggling during testing hours.

Overall, there’s no end all be all cure for test anxiety. The truth is, it happens to almost everyone at some point in time. The trick, and this goes beyond just testing, is that you as a student or as a parent, just have to find ways to manage it. And that can be as simple as sleeping well the night before. But taking care of yourself mentally and physically, as well as having ways to calm down once you have the exam in front of you, all of these things can really help.

 

8 Signs Your Child Needs a Tutor

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Ever considered tutoring as an option to help your son or daughter succeed in school? Not sure where to look, where to start, or who to talk to? As parents, you want the best for your child, no matter what that entails.

But if you’re confused and trying to find a jumping off point, here are some important signs, some small and some a little bigger, that your student might benefit from getting just a little extra help outside of the classroom!

Slipping Grades 

No mom or dad likes to see a red marked report card. But sometimes, when a child’s grades are slipping, it’s not something that can be easily fixed or mended with a little extra study session. If you notice that your child is bringing home grades that are low or not as high as you know they are capable of, it might be time to start thinking about exploring tutoring options. It might be just one subject, or even one topic within a class that they are struggling with. And remember, it’s nothing to be ashamed about. More and more parents and looking for different ways and resources to help their students be the very best they can be.

Poor Time Management 

Ever notice that your child can’t seem to get something done on time? If it’s a homework assignment, a fill in study guide, or even a book report. Poor time management skills might seem from the outside looking in like just another hurdle to get over. However, in reality, poor time management might be a precursor to something bigger ahead. If you notice your child is presenting with any of these small issues and want to help, consider looking into tutoring methods outside of the additional classroom activity.

Confusion About Projects 

No matter what the subject, kids all learn, thrive and grow differently. It’s important to ask questions but it’s even more important to get really good answers. If your student has a certain subject or topic that seems impossible for them to tackle, they might be struggling more than you know. Confusion about take home projects, essays, math problems, all these road blocks are not just red flags concerning your child’s education, but they are also a tell tale sign that your son or daughter needs a little more help.

No Progress 

If there seems to be something slowing your child down, it might be another sign that they would benefit from private, public, or online tutoring. If there is little to no progress being made within classes and subjects, it might be a good idea to think about having a conversation with your child about where they are and where they would like to be. It’s all about taking in one step at a time, but if there’s something that you know can be fixed with a little extra practice or a little more time, then think about exploring tutoring options in all the forms that it comes in. When there’s a will, there’s a way!

Bad Attitude About School 

It’s normal for kids to have mixed feelings about school. However, the goal is to teach them and let them excel in a safe and educational environment. If your son or daughter dreads school, complains constantly every morning or afternoon, or even makes up reasons and excuses as to why they don’t want to go or are not looking forward to going, that is a serious sign. Perhaps it’s time to start thinking about the bigger picture or problem. If students hate school, it might have something to do with the ways that they are struggling academically. It could come in the form of temper tantrums, long and drawn out fights, or even faking sick. Whatever problems you have experienced, it’s all completely normal if your child feels like they are failing.

Lack of Confidence 

Even as adults, we all struggle with self image and having the ability to believe in ourselves no matter what. But with kids, it can be much worse. If you son or daughter appears to be lacking or losing confidence, it might have something to do with their school environment and how much they believe in themselves when it comes to a variety of subjects. While it might be a difficult question and or conversation to have, it’s one that is well worth it. Being able to be confident in what they are learning and how they are learning will lead to a higher success rate for all kinds of students.

Trouble Concentrating 

If you as a parent notice that your child seems to be having trouble sticking to one thing or getting a point across, it might be time to consider tutoring. Not only will getting outside of classroom assistant really help your student get extra help and support, but it’s also an amazing tool to help them really show what they are made of. The more that a child sees his or her own positive progress and growth, the more that they will actually want to focus in school. One step at a time and little by little, your child will be able to retain more information. Even if it’s just a couple of in person or online sessions. Once your son or daughter puts in that little extra effort, you’ll be amazed with the results and so will they!

Hopelessness 

As parents, you know when there’s something really wrong with your child. Even if it’s something small, like a change in attitude or behavior, there’s something to be said about a whole pile of small things turning into a very serious problem. One of the signs that your child might need a little help academically is if you see them portraying a sense of hopelessness. This might look like giving up on homework, not following through with an essay or out of class project, or even getting down on themselves when they’re sitting at the kitchen table studying for a test. Kids express emotions in all kinds of different ways. And it’s important, as we all know, to pay attention to those signs. Something as simple as getting them an instructor that is not a teacher figure can really help.

No matter if you’ve read this list and can relate to one or all of these signs, each and every one is important to take note of. If your child seems to be having more trouble than not lately in regards to school, it might be time to do a little reading and research yourself.

Talk to your sons and daughters, talk to their teachers, and find out just how much or how little help or motivation they might need to get the job done. School can be challenging in all kids of ways for all different kinds of students. But it doesn’t have to be! Learning should be fun! And your child should be excelling in school. And if tutoring can help help your students true into the very best versions of themselves, then start that journey together today!

 

 

 

7 Benefits of Online Tutoring Parents Will Want to Consider

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We all know that one of the most important thing for a child to have access to when they are struggling academically are resources. Weather that be a parent, a mentor, a good group of peers, or in this case, an amazing tutor.

While in person tutoring is the ideal solution when a child is faced with difficulty learning a particular subject, having trouble completing assignments, or preparing for a big test, there are also many other resources that can assist a child’s growth and development in and out of the classroom.

One of those very important tools is online or cyber tutoring. Let’s take a look at seven ways that online skill coaching can be the perfect solution for you and your child!

We can start with the most obvious benefit of helping your child through difficult classes, coursework and test prep.

Availability

Everyone has a busy life, there’s no way around that. And while traditional in person tutoring session are proven to be effective, the timing and the circumstance doesn’t always work out for every family. Travel time is basically eliminated when choosing the remote option. So, whatever a family and student has going on, there’s always someone there to lend a helping hand.

Value

Another important benefit to consider is value. When you chose remote or online coaching for your child, you are able to have much more control over who and what and where and how your child is learning. Outside research comes into play here, but that means that you as a parent can become more involved in your son or daughter’s education. And isn’t that what we all want? A way to know that you played a significant role in helping you child succeeded in whatever way matters to you the most? When making the decision that seems right for you and your family, you are able to hand pick who assisting and providing educational support.

Convince

            This one goes without saying, but it matters more than you would think! Having a hassle-free way to make sure that your child is going to excel is the classroom is the whole point of getting him or her out of classroom help anyway, right? But with digital tutoring platforms, you don’t have to worry about taking time out of your busy day. You can make sure that your child in on track while you do the rest of the things on your to do list Pretty awesome, right?

Advancements in Tech

            This one is a little more involved that the above listed, but none the less, maybe one of the biggest and best reasons to consider online educational help. When using sites and online models, your child is exposed to a whole new set of skills. From using online video software, to screen sharing, to electronic white boards, your student is not only learning something new, but is able to understand programs that his or her peers might not have had the chance to play around with. So, not only are they getting the help that they are already need and that you have been searching for, but without even realizing it, you are helping them add another skillset that can be expanded on in the future. The nature of learning is to never stop questioning and interacting and with digital tutoring, you are allowing your child to explore a whole other of thinking that may not be provided within a traditional classroom setting.

Being Close to Home

             The way that students interact in schools and centers is very different from the ways that they behavior at home. It’s only natural that the ways they learn would be different too. Being close to home can and will help students who are losing focus within a new environment get back on track. Not only are they learning, but they are doing it from a place where they know how to interact and of course, you as a parent are there to make sure that they are excelling.

No Social Pressure

            It’s no secret that we all get distracted from time to time. And with children it’s no different. One of the major benefits of online course and classroom assistance is that your child has nothing else to do beside the task at hand. Even centers that focuses on student and tutoring solo interactions will not be able to completely eliminate outside pressure. If a student is attending out of school sessions, it’s not always because they are struggling academically, but more that they are thriving socially and therefore have other things on their mind when trying to complete lessons or tasks. With online tutoring, there is no distraction and no pressure from peers. There is only a list of tasks that need to be completed and skills to be worked on.

One on One Instruction

             This point may seem to borrow from the latter, but consider the benefit of only having one person teach one student and not a classroom full of them. Online instruction helps create an important bond between student and educator. It builds trusts and allows there to be a personal connection, one that is sometimes lost if a tutor or teacher has too many students or is simply overworked. One on one instruction allows for the student to really open up and grow academically when they know that they are going to be meeting with the same person, at the same time every session.

Whatever the reason you are looking to make changes to your child’s educational activities, there is no right or wrong answer. In person centers have just as big and amazing impact as online sessions. You as a parent should not feel swayed in one direct or the other because getting your child back on track and learning is one of the most important choices you can make for them. However, there is something to be said about the benefits of nontraditional or online and digital tutoring services and resources.

If in person and center focuses settings work best for you and your child, then of course continue on that path. But for those families and parents that need a little bit more time in time or a little more freedom, give online tutoring a chance! You might be surprised at just how effective it is!

Maryland Collegiate STEM Conference Part 2

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by Dr. Charice Hayes, Founder/CEO

The Maryland Collegiate STEM Conference (MCSC) was a joyous event. On April 27th, over 500 people came to see Maryland’s best in STEM at Baltimore City Community College . Maryland’s lieutenant governor Boyd Rutherford was the keynote speaker.

All 4 One Tutoring had a wonderful exhibit that showcased our STEM initiatives and program offerings. We showcased Honeycomb Kits and how these coding kits can be utilized in the k-career setting. Honeycomb specializes in STEAM education. We are grateful for this partnership.

Our exhibit also showcased Deilab and Smart Learning Solutions STEM 2 STEAM initiatives. All 4 One Tutoring has put together an extended learning program with Deilab and Smart Learning Solutions. We currently run a program at Eutaw-Marshburn Elementary School in Baltimore City. We are also excited to bring drone technology in our programming.

Thomas Hayes, Board Chair

We really enjoyed the MCSC and those who were really astonished of our programs and offerings. We will have more about this event for those who are subscribed to our mailing list. If you’re not already subscribed, make sure you subscribe TODAY!

Maryland Collegiate STEM Conference

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by Dr. Charice Hayes, CEO/Founder of All 4 One Tutoring

It’s been a while since we’ve posted content on our blog site! Don’t worry; we’ll be posting more blog posts in the future.

Do you enjoy STEM? As we’re well into the 21st Century, the acronyms of STEM, which stands for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics, are a heavy component at educational institutions and the workforce. STEM integrates real-world applications into lessons and trainings.

This month, faculty, staff, and students of community colleges in the state of Maryland will come together and showcase their knowledge, and skills for STEM awareness. The host of this knowledge worthy event is Baltimore City Community College . The conference will take place on Saturday, April 27th from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

What’s even more exciting for us is that myself and my Board Chair/Partnership Coordinator, Thomas Hayes, will be exhibitors. We will showcase some STEM products that will be conducive to the classroom and professional development. We are excited to attend! Below are photos from a STEM symposium back in November 2018.

The mission of All 4 One Tutoring is to educate and empower those who want to have a positive social change and succeed to the best of his or her ability.

2018 Year in Review

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by Dr. Charice Hayes, Founder

All 4 One Tutoring has had its ups and downs in 2018; however, the company continued to make strides. In last year’s review, I stated that we have put some things in place to diversify and expand our product offerings, and we were able to put that in the pipeline and began to see things come together.

Contracts/Partnerships

In May of 2018, we were able to begin a partnership with Honeycomb . Honeycomb is a hardware company that specializes in STEAM education and is dedicated to designing and producing excellent electronic building blocks and related toy kits. Our Board Chair, Thomas Hayes, joined Honeycomb at a conference in Atlanta, Georgia to solidify the partnership.

In July of 2018, we dissolved our partnership with the Empowerment Academy. For four years, we ran a very successful after-school program. At least we were able to get some of the students in the program to try out the STEM kits from our partnership with Honeycomb. Since the 2018-2019 school year started, we have missed the parents and students that we served.

On the upside, in that same month, we secured a partnership with Eutaw Marshburn Elementary school in Baltimore City. We partnered with DEILAB and Smart Learning Solutions to run a 6-week STEM program with 4th and 5th grades at the beginning of the 2018-2019 school year.

That program has led us in securing an additional contract with Eutaw Marshburn Elementary and partnering with Promise Heights via the University of Maryland Baltimore in running a STEM program. Thank you to Principal Tiffany Cole at Eutaw Marshburn Elementary.

Baltimore City Community College

Board Chair, Thomas Hayes, was invited to present at Baltimore City Community College’s 8th STEM Symposium. At the symposium, Mr. Hayes was able to share some insights about what we do for STEM/STEAM. He even had participants put coding kits together.

Hiring

Once again, we were able to hire tutors for our local face-to-face tutoring  This month (December 2018), we have once again started the process of hiring an administrative assistant and a social media person. We are looking forward to bringing more staff on-board the first 3 months of 2019.

Office Home 

We are still looking for an office home. This year has been an on and off process of searching for our office home.

Accounting 

For the first time in 5 years, All 4 One Tutoring‘s income and net profit has decreased. The decrease is about 2% for both income and net profit, but to a small business, this is it’s impactful. So, we have strategically made a plan to comeback.

What’s Next 

Being the founder/owner of such a blossoming, rewarding, and empowering organization continues to be an honor. We are proof that when we work together to achieve a common goal, we can expand quality services and programming so that everyone can contribute to positive social change. What we have planned for 2019 is:

  • to expand to the state of Georgia (still in the making).
  • to develop more on-demand courses.
  • to hire more staff.
  • to continue to develop more partnerships.
  • to find our office home.
  • to increase revenue and profit.

Special Thanks 

Just as last year, I would like to give a special thank you to those who have contributed blog posts to our blog this year. We will continue to open our doors for guest bloggers in 2019. Thank you to all who value what we do.

Let’s see each other prosper in 2019!!

Finding Focus: How to Find a Distraction-Free Learning Area for Your Children

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by Susan Good retirededucator.org

Learning how to focus on the task at hand can take years to perfect, and for many kids across the US, it can be difficult to find a good balance between school work and homework. Moving from the classroom to all the distractions that home offers can be jarring, leading to a decline in grades and poor self-esteem. That’s why it’s so important to help your child find a distraction-free zone to do schoolwork in, whether it’s in a room that is isolated from the rest of the house or just a desk where they have room for all the tools they need to learn.

You can also make other areas of your home more conducive to learning, such as adding a reading nook that has good lighting and comfy chairs to sit in. This is especially helpful for kids who aren’t automatically drawn to books, and it can help them find a love of literature that will help boost their experience in school.

Keep reading for the best tips on how to create a distraction-free zone for your kids at home.

Find a Quiet Space

Whether the learning area you create is in a room by itself or is simply an organized desk for homework, it should be a quiet space that won’t allow for interruptions. This is especially important if you have more than one child. Look for an area that is away from the main part of the house, or one that can be closed off easily for privacy and quiet.

Create a Reading Nook

Even kids who don’t necessarily love to read will enjoy having a space of their own to sit and look through the books that interest them, so creating a reading nook could benefit your child greatly. Add a comfy chair or pillows, strong lighting, and storage for books, and make sure it’s in a spot that will give your child a little privacy, as it’s difficult to become engaged in a book when there’s a lot going on around us. Make sure you look for books that are both educational and fun, on topics that interest your child. If you’re unsure of how to get started, you might consider hiring a professional to come in and remodel the area; click here for more information.

Set a Schedule

Now that you have the space, it’s a good idea to set a schedule for your child to do his homework or to study. It can be hard to get into a rhythm when there are so many other things going on, such as soccer practice and afterschool activities, so help your child find a routine that will benefit him on a daily basis. Once he gets into the habit of starting homework at a certain time, he’ll be more likely to stick with it throughout the school year.

Turn Off the Devices

Whether your child loves the TV, computer, tablet, game system, or smartphone, it’s important to set rules about when he can use them when school is in session, as they can be a pretty big distraction. The area where he studies and does homework should be device-free, although some studies have shown that classical music played at a low volume can be beneficial for kids who are trying to focus on tasks.

Creating a distraction-free zone for your child can have multiple benefits, especially if he has a learning disability or finds it difficult to concentrate at home, where there are so many opportunities to do anything other than learn. It’s also important to make sure your child isn’t hungry, thirsty, or tired when he sits down to do homework, as being uncomfortable can be a distraction in itself.