Monthly Archives: October 2015

Academic Coaching vs. Tutoring: Helping Students Succeed

photo credit: https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/2/25/Ashs-teacher-and-students.jpg

photo credit: https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/2/25/Ashs-teacher-and-students.jpg

This topic comes up a lot. Not many people are familiar with the concept of academic coaching. When I tell people what I do they say, ‘So you’re like a tutor?’

Well, not really. I am not a tutor. An academic coach is different from a tutor and helps students become independent learners who use various strategies when challenges arise.

So what’s the difference?

Generally, students and parents seek out a tutor for help with a specific subject because the student’s grades are poor in that subject. However, an academic coach helps a student with their overall approach to academics and the learning process. The student does not receive help with one subject, but guidance on how to approach school with various tools so that they can be successful and tackle challenges when they arise. A student does not have to have unsatisfactory grades to receive help from an academic coach. In fact, many A and B students have academic coaches to help them with time management and organization so as to reduce stress and anxiety, and improve their overall approach to their school work. In fact, many students choose to utilize both a tutor and academic coach depending on their needs. I know some great tutors that I love recommending to families.

These Examples Should Help Clear Up Misconceptions

Tutor: Helps student with math by teaching them more in depth about solving linear equations.

Academic Coach: Works with student to develop strategies that help the student focus and concentrate in class when the teacher is explaining how to solve linear equations.

Tutor: Helps student improve their punctuation, grammar, and writing though practice activities.

Academic Coach: Works with student to develop their thinking and writing process so they can complete research papers more efficiently.

Melanie Black of Student Futures is a certified academic life coach for students and teens. She has a passion to help students succeed. Academic coaching helps develop life skills for students as well as gives them academic strategies, which help to decrease anxiety and stress in students. Contact Melanie Black today for a free consultation at Melanie@studentfutures.org or (904) 487-8269.

Mindful Monday: Student Posture

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photo credit: http://www.freestockphotos.biz/photos.php?c=all&o=popular&s=0&lic=all&a=12&set=all

How does our posture affect us?  How are you sitting or standing right now? The way we hold our posture affects our mind and mood. Being mindful of their posture can greatly help students succeed. Making this small effort will cause big positive results.

Studies have shown that with the right posture one can

  • improve their performance.
  • communicate more effectively.
  • help you gain confidence and be more assertive.
  • be more persistent.

Often times students are tired and bored in class or while studying. They tend to slouch down in their seats, or put their head down, or worse while studying in bed they fall asleep. Students’ posture affects their ability to learn and retain material. It affects their test results and eventually their overall GPA. Using good posture combined with deep breathing can greatly help students succeed in school by helping them focus and better handle overwhelming situations in and out of class.

Let’s do a simple exercise to help us be mindful of our posture.

1. Feet flat
2. Hands flat
3. Back straight
4. Chin up

How do you feel? The key is to be more mindful of our posture and to adjust when we find the need.

Amy Cuddy, a social psychologist, who gave a famous TED Talk titled, Your Body Language Shapes Who You Are suggests two poses to help boost your confidence and put you in a positive mindset.

Photo Credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/lakbay7107/

Photo Credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/lakbay7107/

Victory Stance

1. Stand up straight;
2. Push your shoulders back;
3. Widen your stance;
4. Hold your head high; and
5. Raise your arms up in a “V” shape.

 

 

 

Photo Credit: https://c1.staticflickr.com/7/6037/6279920726_6eff87fa6c_b.jpg

Photo Credit: https://c1.staticflickr.com/7/6037/6279920726_6eff87fa6c_b.jpg

Power Pose

1. Stand up straight;
2. Push your shoulders back;
3. Widen your stance;
4. Hold your head high; and
5. Put your hands on your waist with elbows out

Next time you feel yourself getting bored or overwhelmed with school work be mindful of your posture. Try the poses above to help give you a boost.

 

 

 

 

Keep your head up and reach for the stars!

Melanie Black of Student Futures is a certified academic life coach for students and teens. She has a passion to help students succeed. Academic coaching helps develop life skills for students as well as gives them academic strategies, which help to decrease anxiety and stress in students. Contact Melanie Black today for a free consultation at Melanie@studentfutures.org or (904) 487-8269.

10 Tips for Student Success: Overcoming the Mid-Semester Slump

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Photo Credit: https-//c1.staticflickr.com/3/2848/10722725205_0b2fcd12cf_b

It always happens around this time. The excitement from the new school year is gone. The school work is starting to pile up. The stress of school sets in. Students start to feel anxiety and a lack of motivation. Below are some success strategies for helping high school and college students succeed while trying to overcome the mid-semester slump.

1. Make a Change: Find a new place to study, one that will allow you to focus and get your work done. Somewhere there is no distractions! You’d be amazed at how much a change of scenery can help. If you are happy with your place of study then possibly change where or how you are sitting.

2. Don’t Go At It Alone: Form a study group or find a study buddy. Two heads are better than one!

3. Take Care of Yourself: Getting enough sleep and eating well will help you maintain your focus in class and while doing homework. No matter how hard it gets do not sacrifice your health!

4. Analyze Your Grades: Look at your weakest vs. strongest classes. What are you doing right in your strongest classes? Use those same strategies in your weakest classes. If something you’re doing isn’t working for you anymore, try something new.

5. Ask For Help: Don’t be afraid to ask questions! If you don’t understand a concept approach your teacher and ask for help.

6. Create A Study Plan: It’s time to make a study schedule and stick to it. Go to class, take good notes, get off of Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. Social media will still be there in an hour and forty-five minutes. Make time for the library and make time for study sessions. A little planning can go a long way, and keep you away from those difficult late night study sessions.

7. Use a Planner: Plan ahead. Write out what’s happening each week and allocate your time accordingly. Prioritize and do the most important things first. Students who use time management strategies will notice less anxiety and stress.

8. Remember Your Purpose: Revisit your goals from the beginning of the year. Remember why you want to do well. Focus on your vision for the future.

9. Divide and Conquer: Studying will go a lot easier—and you’ll feel a lot better about it—if you break your preparation into bite-sized, manageable pieces. Not only will the task seem smaller—which will keep you upbeat about the activity—you will avoid procrastination and (surprise) build up speed as the preparation goes on.

10. Reward Yourself: Not only will this lift your spirits, you’ll find yourself studying better when you’re in a relaxed and upbeat mood. Pick something you rarely get to do. Create a list of ways to reward yourself ahead of time so you can just select one without much thought when the time arrives.

Melanie Black of Student Futures is a certified academic life coach for students and teens. She has a passion to help students succeed. Academic coaching helps develop life skills for students as well as gives them academic strategies, which help to decrease anxiety and stress in students. Contact Melanie Black today for a free consultation at Melanie@studentfutures.org or (904) 487-8269.

Photo Credit: https-//c1.staticflickr.com/1/634/21140523181_fe3740938d

Photo Credit: https-//c1.staticflickr.com/1/634/21140523181_fe3740938d