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Wise Learning Summer SAT/ACT Prep Classes

Summer ACT/SAT Prep Classes!

Summer is the best time to begin College entrance exam test preparation because students are able to focus on test taking skills and strategies while not having to juggle their schoolwork. Our past students have been extremely successful and have improved their test scores significantly after completing our ACT or SAT prep classes.

Cost of Exam Prep Class:

  • 24 Hour Test Prep Package: $1800
    • 8 Week Session
    • You choose the weeks
  • No Package Commitment (Full Price): $110/hr
  • Summer Exam Prep Special
    • Additional 10% off the package price
    • Only available for packages that take place between 6/26 and 8/25
    • Students will also receive 2 additional free practice tests prior to their test date after their package has ended

Included Test Prep for All Students:

  • Custom Designed Strategies: Students will receive custom designed test taking strategies based on their learning style as well as their personality.
  • Content Area: Focus on content area subjects and taught by specialized certified teachers.
  • 1:1 instruction: Students will receive individualized 1:1 instruction allowing our teachers to tailor sessions to the students needs.
  • Unlimited practice tests: Any student who has purchased a test prep package, may come in as often as they like during our regular business hours to take practice tests free of charge. Tests will be scored and reviewed by our certified teachers.

Wise Learning Summer Enrichment Classes

Summer Classes at Wise Learning Center:

  • All Classes Meet Monday – Thursday 1:00 to 4:00 each week unless otherwise notated
  • There will be two separate classes for each topic: a class for 5 to 8 year olds and a class for 9 to 12 year olds

Photography (2 week class) June 20th – June 30th:  Students will learn the art of photography with a culminating project consisting of a portfolio project containing photography; either in hard copy or through a slide show. Students will learn how taking photographs of everyday things can create interesting photography. Students will explore topics of identifying mood within their photos, how  to take photos with different depth perceptions and light sources, and how editing photos can change their effects.

Magic (1 week class) July 5th – July 8th (Tuesday through Friday due to the July 4th holiday):  Students will learn new ways to amaze others with their magic skills! Students will learn the history of magic as well as learn about some famous magicians; all while learning the trips and tricks needed to become magicians themselves. Students will use everyday household items in their magic tricks to ensure they can practice and demonstrate their tricks even after the class has ended.

Acting (2 week class) July 11th – July 21st:  Students will learn the art of acting while being able to freely express themselves. Focus will include learning about movement, voice, and staging. Students will first learn the skills needed to be an actor/actress and will then use those skills to ultimately put on a performance at the end of the two week class. Students will also take place in designing a set and creating props necessary for the performance.

Lego Club (2 week class) July 25th – August 4th:  Our students will get their engineering minds working as they devise solutions to various scenarios. Students will be encouraged to use creativity to think outside the box and develop original solutions to given problems using legos. Students will also engage in lego challenges that may include building with only a certain number of bricks or having to incorporate a specific design element into their creation.

Outdoor Adventures (1 week class) August 8th – August 11th:  Students will explore nature and the world around us. Students will learn about outdoor survival techniques including how to build a shelter, how to tie various knots, and understand different animal tracks in addition to other outdoor education topics. In addition to outdoor adventures, students will learn the importance of teamwork.

Wise Learning Summer Academic Camps

Wise Academic Camps are available all summer long, and can be scheduled on a weekly basis at your convenience.

Summer Teen L.I.F.E Skills Camp

L (earning) I (Important) F (Functions) E (Everyday)

Social Skills/Team Building: Our classes are designed to increase self-esteem and self-regulation through interactions with others. We will teach students new conflict resolution strategies that will be applied through various techniques including modeling and acting out. Team building activities are designed to increase positive peer interactions while practicing and developing new strategies for successful social interactions.

Function and Everyday Life Math Skills: Students will work on setting priorities, money management, and planning. Students will learn and practice the skills needed to make future purchases while developing their understanding of finances and how it fits into everyday life. Students will practice creating a budget and understanding money through activities such as planning a vacation or making purchases related to personal enjoyment.

Secondary Life Skills: The priority of this class will be to increase independence of secondary life skills for the future. Topics will include exploring hobbies and areas of interest for future employment, learning cooking skills while relating it to healthy choices, and time management. Students will explore various educational paths and/or job opportunities related to individual interests. Students will learn how to cook basic meals while understanding the importance of making healthy choices. Students will engage in activities that promote the importance of time management while learning new strategies to keep them on track.

Wise Academic Summer Camp

We are currently offering a great summer “Academic Camp” program for students k-12th grade. This program will teach students a variety of new skills and strategies, fill in foundation skill holes, address content areas across the curriculum, preteach concepts for the following school year and more. The small class size is perfect for social interaction, while still enabling each student to receive the attention needed to progress quickly and reach their academic goals.

  • Student will be grouped into classes of 3-6 students by age, ability, and interests.
  • The curriculum is custom designed for each student.
  • Activities are “hands on” and fun for all ages!
  • We include a variety of academics, enrichment, social skills, and sports.

– Please call to inquire about specifics pertaining to your child.

Tutoring Services and More at Wise Learning Center

Check out this video from Wise Learning Center. We pride ourselves on our ability to understand your students’ needs and set them up for success. Whether it is with our Fairfield tutoring services, our Ridgefield alternative school, or one of our summer programs, Wise Learning Centers can help with greater success both in and out of the classroom.

Wise Learning Center Summer Program

Check out some of the stuff we have going on this summer in all of our locations. Call today to learn more about how Wise Learning Center can help your student this summer.

 

Wise Learning Center Summer Programming

Social Skills Training: An Evidenced Based Practice

When we view academic achievement through a social and emotional lense, we realize that there are a variety of factors that impact a child’s academic success. Children who do not possess the necessary skills to regulate their social interactions and emotional responses are more likely to experience problems in school (Zins, 2014). Poor social communication and interaction skills put children at risk of isolation, behavioral problems and academic underachievement.

Imagine a child who is struggling with managing impulses and interacting appropriately in school. This child becomes labeled a “bad kid” by his teachers and is constantly sent out of the classroom for being disruptive, thus missing out on important learning experiences in the classroom. Picture a child who has difficulty interacting with other children, consistently trying to make friends but instead experiencing negative interaction patterns that lower her self-esteem. This child then begins to dread attending school and problems increase. Imagine now a child who excels academically but struggles with crucial social skills like eye contact and conversation skills, which later limits the opportunities he receives when attending interviews for schools or jobs. We know that a child’s success is dependent on more than just his or her grades and we also understand that any of the aforementioned scenarios can be very challenging for a parent to handle. We want to help you make sure that your child has the best chance possible, which is why we offer social skills groups at Wise Learning.

Most of us naturally acquire social skills but there are many children who do not. Failure in social situations is often not attributed to a lack of interest in socializing, but rather caused by a lack of social skills and in the inability to determine when to use the skills.  Social skills training in a group format allows for explicit training for those children who did not naturally acquire social skills (Williams, et al., 2006). Social skills training is an evidenced-based intervention used to increase children’s success in areas of social communication and interaction, and decrease risk factors associated with poor social skills. Social skills training in a group format has been demonstrated to be particularly beneficial as it provides the opportunity to practice the skills in a relatively natural setting and may promote interaction with other children (Barry, et al., 2003). Additionally, research evidence points to a number of positive outcomes for children who have participated in social skills groups including improvements in greetings and conversation skills (Barry, et al., 2003). Improvements have also been noted in eye contact, identification of nonverbal cues and emotion perception (Castorina & Negri, 2011).

If you are interested in more information about our social skills groups at Wise Learning Centers please contact Jennifer Wilson at jwilson@wiselearningcenters.com or by calling 203-403-3546.

Written By: Jennifer Wilson, LMSW

References

Barry, T. D., Klinger, L. G., Lee, J. M., Palardy, N., Gilmore, T., & Bodin, S. D. (2003). Examining the effectiveness of an outpatient clinic-based social skills group for high-functioning children with autism. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 33, 685–701.

Castorina, L. M. (2011). The Inclusion of Siblings in Social Skills Training Groups for Boys With Asperger Syndrome. Journal Of Autism & Developmental Disorders, 41(1), 73-81.

Williams White, S., Keonig, K., & Scahill, L. (2006). Social Skills Development In Children With Autism Spectrum Disorders: A Review Of The Intervention Research. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 1858-1868.

Zins, J. (2004). Building academic success on social and emotional learning: What does the research say? New York, New York: Teachers College Press.

What is Executive Function?

“We prepare dinner while simultaneously helping our children with their homework and making notes about appointments we need to schedule for the week. We focus on our jobs when we need to and our families when they need us. We remember the phone number that our neighbor just gave us so that we can write it down as soon as we find a pen. We take a deep breath, rather than honk, if the car in front of us fails to move immediately when the light turns green. As adults, our capacities to multitask, to display self-control, to follow multiple-step directions even when interrupted, and to stay focused on what we are doing despite the ever-present distractions are what undergird the deliberate, intentional, goal-directed behavior that is required for daily life and success at work. And while there are cognitive limits to anyone’s ability to multi-task effectively, we need and rely on these basic skills in all areas of our lives. Without them, we could not solve complicated problems and make decisions, persist at tedious and important tasks, make plans and adjust them when necessary, recognize and correct mistakes, control our impulsive behavior, or set goals and monitor our progress toward meeting them. Children need to develop these skills, too, in order to meet the many challenges they will face on the road to becoming productive, contributing members of their communities.”

– Center on the Developing Child at Harvard University

The quote above truly sheds light on the necessity of properly developed executive function skills in order to lead successful, productive lives. But let us backtrack for a moment, what exactly are executive function skills? In brief executive function skills allow us to focus our attention on the tasks at hand, use working memory to retain information, organize and plan, follow multi-step directions, regulate our emotions when necessary, engage in goal-directed behavior, and inhibit impulsivity.

The Center on the Developing Child at Harvard University describes executive function in terms of three different dimensions; working memory, inhibitory control, and cognitive or mental flexibility. Working memory is described as, “the capacity to hold and manipulate information in our heads over short periods of time.” Inhibitory control is, “the skills we use to master and filter our thoughts and impulses so we can resist temptations, distractions, and habits and to pause and think before we act.” Cognitive or mental flexibility encompasses “the capacity to nimbly switch gears and adjust to changed demands, priorities, or perspectives. It is what enables us to apply different rules in different settings.” In essence, these three dimensions work together and the importance of all three is clear in almost every area of life. Whether it be at school, at work, or even in social situations, executive function skills are needed to manage the necessary tasks and interact appropriately and effectively.

Research evidence supports that we are not born with executive function skills but rather, develop these skills over time. Early childhood years are considered formative for development of executive function skills but the development of these skills tends to continue through adolescents. The good news is that research evidence also supports the success of specialized practice and training in helping with the development of crucial executive function skills. This means that with practice and training, your child can develop the executive function skills needed to be successful and independent in school and beyond.

If you find that your child has difficulty managing and organizing his/her materials, has trouble completing tasks, organizing information, planning assignments, and managing time, it is not the end of the world! With the proper assistance, your child can learn the skills and strategies needed and improve upon his/her executive function skills. We know this to be true because we have helped many students at Wise Learning Center improve executive function skills in Connecticut.

It is often assumed that every child within a classroom already has these skills, that they can follow multi-step directions, plan and organize, and complete tasks without any assistance. The needs of the children who have not developed these skills are often not met, leading teachers and parents to believe that the child is simply lazy or not trying hard enough. At Wise Learning, we realize the importance of focusing on these very skills with our students, clearly explaining each new skill, strategy, or method, and guiding our students through the process of using these skills that are often very new to them. We strive to provide an environment full of encouragement, where our students have the opportunity to practice and eventually become better able to handle their work independently with their newfound skill-set.

If you feel your child is struggling with executive function skills, please feel free to contact us to schedule a consultation. Our team of certified teachers and social workers will create an individualized plan for your child in order to best meet his/her needs.

For more information about executive function skills, including a chart that depicts the ideal developmental trajectory, please click on the following link: http://developingchild.harvard.edu/resources/reports_and_working_papers/working_papers/wp11/

We hope you found this edition of our blog to be helpful and informative. If there is a specific topic that you would like to see on our blog, please let us know! Any suggestions can be directed to info@wiselearningcenters.com

 

Written By: Jennifer Wilson, LMSW

ADHD Tutoring Instructors – Tutoring for Learning Differences

If their learning differences are not specifically addressed, a child’s attention disorders can take a serious toll on their education. A little extra help early on can have a huge impact on a student whose studies are affected by ADD or ADHD. These learning differences can cause difficulty in the classroom, because many teachers are not extensively trained to teach children with this condition. The question then becomes, how do you know your child is learning their required material, and how do you know they are getting the most out of the education system? One way to ensure that both of these things do indeed happen is to enroll them in program-specific ADHD Tutoring from Wise Learning Center, which is offered by a group of educators and instructors who are able to provide individualized programming and attention. We are all sensitive to the needs students with learning differences might have, and are ready to accommodate them in any way we can.

The situation described with each ADD tutor is not always the case in the classroom setting. Teachers may find themselves in difficult and demanding environments that force their focus away from your child, who may appear to them as a student who enjoys acting out or behaving insubordinately. Worse yet, they may be perceived by the instructor as unmotivated or as a student who does not put forth a solid effort. More often than not, teachers skim over kids who have attention disorders and simply focus on the entire class, which means your child could fall behind due to the manifestation of symptoms they cannot help.

Learning Differences Stemming from Attention Disorders

Once a child is diagnosed with an attention disorder after the results of an evaluation are analyzed, each parent should meet with the student’s instructors. We recognize that this does not always occur for every child, which is why Wise Learning Center has established infrastructure to communicate with the medical and social professionals involved in our students’ lives. Here are some of the education factors that are directly affected when a child is trying to learn with an attention disorder:

  • Lack of focus or motivation to complete coursework
  • Inability to sit still for periods of time.
  • Problems listening for extended periods of time.
  • Finding a central focus for each subject matter.

Distinction of ADHD Tutoring

The problem in the classroom is often that teachers aren’t equipped with the necessary tools, nor are they consistently trained in handling these concerns with each individual child. The benefit of having your child participate in ADD Tutoring and ADHD Tutoring at Wise Learning Center should be plain to see. They would be tutored by certified instructors who are trained and specialize in teaching students with this condition. They understand ADHD and have experience with a variety of methods that will work well with each particular child to ensure they properly grasp the material. Our teachers understand their students and how to work with them, how to best teach them, how they pay attention and where the attention goes, and how to allow them to get the most out of the lesson plan they are engaged in.

One of the most difficult things for kids who have ADD and ADHD is to maintain focus for long periods of time. in fact, some have a hard time sitting still for even just a few minutes at a time. The right ADD Tutoring and ADHD Tutoring facility can accommodate these difficulties. Our ADHD Tutors will establish a regimen of personalized instruction, to ensure each child has the best opportunity to excel. We focus on each child’s needs while catering our services to the concerns of their parents. The teachers learn what each child has a hard time with, how they learn best, why they can’t maintain attention, what they enjoy and what they dislike, and which subjects require heavier focus. We will build up a profile for each individual child or student instead of grouping them into categories, which helps the student do the best they can in each subject even if they don’t particularly enjoy the material.

ADD and ADHD are not cut and dry disorders, and every child affected by them suffers at different levels and extremes. If you want your child to excel in their education, consider how our ADD tutors and ADHD tutoring at Wise Learning Center can help. For parents in Ridgefield, Fairfield, or Newtown Connecticut, we are the premier ADD Tutoring and ADHD Tutoring to consider when your child needs additional help, focus training, or executive function coaching.

Tutoring for Learning Differences – Part 1

Providing an Autistic child with a tutor can be extraordinarily beneficial. This is due to the fact that these children do not consistently receive an adequate amount of personalized attention while in a classroom setting. Tutoring allows them one-on-one time with the instructor with strategies that have been catered specifically for their needs. Tutoring is able to both help your child progress in skill areas that require a bit more work as well as the enhancement of an autism treatment program. An autism tutor in Connecticut that has been thoroughly trained is able to improve upon the child’s academics, social interaction, communication, and language. 

A Tutor’s Role

Generally, autism tutors are certified teachers, therapists, consultants as well as student teachers that are seeking certification who have been trained specifically to work with students that have been diagnosed with autism. The vast majority of tutors specialize in a particular treatment method and have earned their certification or training within that respective specialty. Additionally, there are special education tutors that have gained experience in regards to working with autistic students in regards to a variant of treatment methods. 

Generally speaking, tutors that work with autistic students deliver one-on-one assistance so that the student is able to work on aspects of their academic needs as well as their treatment program. A tutor can be a great benefit for focused work that may be needed with a problem area. 

Benefits of Tutoring

Per a study that was conducting in 2007, tutoring is able to substantially improve the academic performance of a child that has been diagnosed with autism. It should be noted that the younger the child, the more significant the improvement can become. Those in need of expert assistance in a particular area of a home-based treatment will definitively find autistism tutoring quite beneficial. Autism programs that are home based often require the employment of tutors, teachers and therapists in regards to a variety of specialized areas. 

Autistism tutoring is also able to help students become more comfortable in regards to seeking assistance when needed. ASD tutoring is not only able to assist in altering the way in which students approach the learning process, but it also permits students the ability of gaining a deeper comprehension of how their own minds function. As students become better in regards to their ability to ask questions they become more effective in taking exams and receiving instruction overall.

In the event that the child has yet to have a formal Individualized Education Plan (IEP), tutoring is an exceptional method of determining their individual learning style. One of the greatest benefits that can be derived from the tutoring session is the building of confidence. As their confidence begins to rise, the onslaught of behavioral issues tends to decrease. There have been reports that indicate that the greater the comfort and confidence levels of an autistic child, the occurrences of the following will significantly decrease: anxiety, frustration, depression and anger. 

Autism and Peer Tutoring

There are schools that utilize the method of peer tutoring as a measure of encouraging communication and social interaction as a component of inclusionary programs. A teacher will match a neurotypical or non-autistic student with an autistic student within a teaching setting that is expressly structured. The goal of peer tutoring is to improve upon following for the autistic student:

  •  Socially appropriate behavior
  • Two way communication
  • Language
  • Social skills
  • The understanding of other people’s reactions

Incorporating autism tutoring into a child’s treatment plan has the ability to make a substantial difference in a student’s education and overall development. Keep in mind that, ultimately, autism tutoring is able to help students develop the best understanding of their precise needs. Within the tutoring sessions, students are provided with tools, tips and techniques that will help them expressly overcome differences in learning methods and environments. Basically, the tutoring primes the students for lifelong success. The very best results from an ASD tutoring program are gained by those that begin as early as possible. With the assistance of specialized tutors, students that have been diagnosed with autism will be able to rise above any learning disabilities and attain excel academically for years.

Welcome!

Dear Readers,

Welcome to our Blog! Our goal is to provide you with valuable information regarding your child’s academic success and beyond.

At Wise Learning we take a holistic approach by creating individualized plans for our students. We understand that every child learns differently and that there are numerous factors that impact a child’s academic success. With our students we tend to focus on areas such as academic skill building, learning strategies, classroom skills, study skills, attention and behavior strategies, test-taking, homework skills, time management, and organization, as well as reading, writing, and math skills.

We find that our students thrive in a setting where they are receiving individual attention that is geared toward meeting their learning needs, where they are free to be themselves and learn in a way that feels most authentic to them. At Wise Learning we are also available to support our students in a number of other areas that are generally not addressed in a classroom setting but have proven to be important indicators of academic success. Our team of certified teachers and social workers are able to incorporate critical skills like social skills, emotion regulation, and positive coping.

In our blog you can expect to find pertinent information about academics, social skills, school-based anxiety, emotion regulation, behavior management, and more. We will also keep you updated on upcoming events and special deals at Wise Learning.

Have a topic you would like to see on our blog?  Contact us at info@wiselearningcenters.com. We would love to hear your suggestions!