Giving Back to Your Community This Holiday Season

Are you willing to spread the holiday cheer this year? Boston Tutoring Services is happy to promote organizations who help people in need. There are plenty of fantastic organizations that give all of us the chance for giving back, and the holidays are always a time of year in which people need some extra help. Times have been tough for all of us this year, but if you are able to help those less fortunate,…

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What Exactly Is Universal Kindergarten?

In the wake of the pandemic, which shined a spotlight on the essential nature of early childhood education and care, universal kindergarten is poised to become a reality in California. Championed by Gov. Gavin Newsom and several lawmakers, the $2.7 billion universal kindergarten program will be gradually phased in over the next five years, until it includes all the state’s 4-year-olds by the 2025-26 school year. Currently, transitional kindergarten, or TK, serves about 100,000 children,…

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Living Poets Make English Class More Exciting and Inclusive

The importance of teaching living poets can be highlighted by Amanda Gorman. When the young Black poet in a canary yellow coat dazzled audiences at President Joe Biden’s inauguration, high school teacher Melissa Alter Smith was ready. Using a lesson plan from a friend and fellow teacher, she’d prepared her students to watch Amanda Gorman’s performance and analyze her words. Other teachers took notice, too, and additional lesson plans about “The Hill We Climb” circulated…

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7 Tools and Tips That Help English Language Learners

Heather Bradley is an ESOL (English for Speakers of Other Languages) teacher in Silver Spring, Maryland, where she teaches adult ESOL students. When the English language proficiency assessment her program uses moved online several years ago, many of its corresponding course materials also went virtual, making her program’s transition to distance learning less difficult materials-wise. Yet towards the end of their first semester of virtual learning, Bradley began encouraging her students to write their notes…

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6 Focus Strategies That Really Work

Getting and staying focused can be a challenge in the best of times, but with everything going on in the world right now, trying to focus can often feel downright impossible. Testament to this focus challenge is the growing self-help industry bursting with books, blogs, videos and TED Talks on the topic. There’s even a site called Caveday where the focus-challenged gather together on Zoom — computer cameras switched on for accountability, all other technology put…

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7 Books To Help Address Tough Subjects With Kids

2020 was — to borrow a phrase from a popular kid’s book — a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad year. That means having to discuss a lot of tough subjects with our kids, and for parents, one of the year’s hardest jobs was trying to explain the state of the world in a way children can understand. “We are living in challenging times,” says children’s book author Matt de la Peña — and kids are…

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For Thanksgiving, Please Consider Giving Back

Now is the time to remember those in need! As Thanksgiving quickly approaches, food banks and other charitable organizations all over Massachusetts are now accepting donations. Please consider getting into the spirit of giving and help those who really need it. You can either make a monetary donation or collect food to drop off at a food bank. Recommended donation items include cereal, oatmeal, rice, beans, low sodium soup, stew, chili, pasta, low sugar canned…

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4 Steps for Encouraging Independence in Teens

Julie Lythcott-Haims stumbled on something troubling and surprising about the independence of the young adults in her midst. It started about twenty years ago, when she served as a dean at Stanford. There, in the company of some of the best and brightest strivers in the world, she found that many students relied upon parents to handle the run-of-the-mill stuff of life for them. Meanwhile, members of the Millennial generation more broadly were going on…

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Amy Poehler’s Smart Girls is Making a Difference

Amy Poehler, well known for her roles in Saturday Night Live and Parks and Recreation, has taken her platform and used it to help fight global poverty. Poehler and a colleague of hers, producer Meredith Walker, started Amy Poehler’s Smart Girls in 2007, which originated with a YouTube video series in 2008 to help inspire girls and teens to express themselves. Since then, the web series has grown into a dedicated website that is intended…

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13 Effective Study Strategies That Help Students Learn

Students are expected to learn how to study, schedule their time, and complete sizable assignments without procrastinating, yet study strategies often aren’t taught explicitly in school. With the increased self-sufficiency necessitated by virtual education, educators and parents can help students learn and manage their goals more effectively by directly teaching study skills. Daniel Willingham, a psychologist at the University of Virginia, studies the application of cognitive psychology in education. Here are his best tips for…

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