Category Archives: Back to School

7 Ways Omega Can Help This School Year

  1. Omega helps students who have just begun having difficulty with a subject or combination of subjects. They may have even achieved straight “A’s” all through elementary school. Now their skill gaps are evident through falling grades and confidence.
  2. Omega helps students who have always struggled in school and don’t know why. Their grades are inconsistent and they lack confidence. They have never had their child tested and are concerned there may be a learning disability or ADHD.
  3. Omega helps students who know they have a learning disability. These students know their deficiencies and respond well to year-round tutoring. They know Omega could never fill all of the skills gaps in all of their academic areas. Our tutors complement their IEP accommodations in school.
  4. Omega helps students who want to maintain their good grades through honors classes. They are concerned that, without our extra help, they will fall behind. The Woodcock Johnson may show advanced grade placement or no skill gaps. But our goal is to ease their anxiety throughout the school year with classes as needed.
  5. Omega helps students who want to improve a letter grade. This is the average student who just needs that extra help. The student needs us to keep them focused throughout the school year with test preparation, homework help, and study skills.
  6. Omega helps students who need the instruction and/or positive reinforcement that a tutor can provide. Some children are very shy and lack self-confidence. They don’t ask questions publicly in school. They do OK with classwork, but freeze on tests and quizzes with performance anxiety.
  7. Omega helps students who need homework help because of poor study skills and time management. They need our structured homework environment and study skills instruction (time management, agenda organization, test prep, listening skills, note-taking).

Omega Learning® Center is AdvancED accredited nationwide and provides tutoring and test preparation services for grades K-12. To find a learning center near you, visit OmegaLearning.com.

Get Back into the School Routine

Reduce stress with these simple, time-saving, mood-lifting strategies.

  1. Start your day the night before. Prepare snacks and clothes and solidify the next day’s plan at night. Fill your child’s backpack with the things that they may need for school or for an after-school play date.
  2. Wake up earlier. Give yourself and your child extra time in the morning — even 15 minutes will help. Try using an alarm clock that plays soothing nature sounds or happy music to make wake-up time more fun.
  3. Send only teacher-approved items to school. Talk to your child’s teacher about classroom rules before sending in anything. Most teachers do not want children bringing in valuable items or toys that encourage aggressive play, but will likely encourage a favorite book or photograph.
  4. Create a special drop-off ritual. Come up with a memorable, loving way to say goodbye — a lipstick kiss on the hand, a secret handshake, or a special phrase that you create with your child.
  5. Set aside after-school downtime. Some children experience a meltdown at the end of the day. To avoid this, try to build in some time to unwind after school. Allow your child to visit the playground, spend time alone curled up with a book, or engage in quiet activities such as painting, building with blocks, or solitary imaginative play.
  6. Make dinnertime family time. Whenever possible, eat together as a family. Kids benefit from spontaneous dinner-table conversations. Ask your child to tell you about their day and share interesting things that happened to you. They will feel more “grown up” when they are included in this sort of conversation.
  7. Follow the school’s rules. Teachers count on families to support the classroom rules and routines — such as sick-child policies, authorized escorts, and arriving on time.
  8. Give your child undivided attention. Set aside time each day just to be with your child — even if it’s just 20 minutes — and allow no interruptions. Follow their lead and take time to observe their interests and enter their world. You will learn a lot about your child, and they will be thrilled to have this time with you.

5 Ways to Help Your Child Stay Organized

Instilling a little order in your child’s study habits will allow a lot more time for actual studying! Put these five tips into practice and help build good habits now.

  1. Set up a Designated Study Space — Make sure there’s an area of your house just for homework, with all the supplies she needs in bins and boxes. Provide plenty of space for books and set up baskets for papers so your child can find old homework to review for tests.
  2. Color Code Subjects — Buy school supplies for each subject in a different color, so your child can see at a glance which folder, notebook, and binder has to do with which subject.
  3. Create a Cubby Hole at Home — Place a crate or sturdy box near your front door so your child can keep his backpack and other school items in one spot. Teach him to put anything he needs for the next day in that place as well. That way, he’ll know where his stuff is when he’s looking for it.
  4. Use a Calendar — Give your child a date book or other portable calendar that she can bring with her to school. Teach her to write down assignments, tests, play dates, lessons, and other plans regularly. Also have her write down her classmates’ phone numbers and e-mail addresses so she can find and contact them easily.
  5. Set a Good Example — If you keep things neat and organized in your own life, your child is more likely to follow suit. If he has trouble making “to-do” lists, sit down and make one alongside him. Seeing you turn off the TV at a regular time to pay bills or even just to read will show him the importance of setting aside time to do things and sticking to it.

Omega Learning® Center is AdvancED accredited nationwide and provides tutoring and test preparation services for grades K-12. To find a learning center near you, visit OmegaLearning.com.

Source: http://www.scholastic.com/parents/resources/article/getting-organized/5-ways-to-help-your-child-stay-organized

6 Back-to-School Tips Every Student Can Use

Students, does it really matter how you start the school year? In a word, yes.

With that, we wanted to give you 6 quick back to school tips to help students get the year off on the right foot. If you want to make sure you’re getting the most out of your semester, give these a shot.

Back to school tip #1: Get an organization system set in your mind before you start school

Systems make things easy. That’s just the way it is.

But too many students think that if they just get supplies to stay organized, Boom! it happens. They’re organized!

But it doesn’t work that way. Disorganized students rarely (like really rarely — as in flying pig rarely — or professional wrestler with a PhD rarely) get disorganized because they lack the proper tools. Disorganization almost always comes from the lack of an organizational system to use those tools.

Back to school tip #2: Make sure you have the right tools

Organization systems are important, and having the right tools make them easier to use. Do you have a tool to keep your assignments in one place? How about a tool that lets you know what due dates are coming up? What about a tool that helps you stay on track today to make sure you get all your homework done?

If you have tools for each of these, you should be set. If you’re not sure, our recommendation is to try a study skills course where we train students in how to use the right tools.

Back to school tip #3: Prepare yourself to do some work

Back to school time means it’s back to work time. Learning is work. It’s hard work. It’s not always super fun.

Prepare yourself, young grasshopper. We recommend putting a time on your calendar that you plan to study each day. This will help you mentally prep for the work ahead of you. Expect to study at least 5 days a week (sad, I know, but it’s what it will take to stay on top of your work and your stress level).

Back to school tip #4: Get in a routine

Are you waking up at the crack of noon? It’s probably time to revisit that alarm clock and start waking up before the sun starts going down. Developing any kind of routine is a great first step toward hitting that back to school grind

Back to school tip #5: Brush up on your study skills

We had to say it. Study skills impact everything about your education — grades, time spent, stress levels, advancement, and we could keep going. Check out our the essential study skills course for some free resources.

Back to school tip #6: Go to sleep

It helps. Trust me. When you get some rest, you’ll be a much happier camper when the daily homework kicks up to hyper-speed again.

If you have any other tips, we’d love to hear them on social media – let’s keep the conversation going.

Omega Learning® Center is AdvancED accredited nationwide and provides tutoring and test preparation services for grades K-12. To find a learning center near you, visit OmegaLearning.com.

Source: https://www.studyright.net/blog/6-back-to-school-tips/

Parent Action Plan: Middle School

Middle school is important because your child is laying the foundation in a lot of subjects and forming study habits. Developing certain skills now will make it easier for your child to adjust to the challenges of high school and college later — and will lead to more college options. Here are some things you and your child can do to make the most of this time.

  1. Help your child set goals for the year. Working toward specific goals will help your child stay motivated and focused.
  2. Review the school calendar together. Note important dates and put them in a shared online calendar or in an easy-to-view place, such as a bulletin board in your kitchen.
  3. Make a plan to check in regularly about schoolwork. If you keep up with your child’s tests, papers and homework assignments, you can celebrate successes and head off problems as a team.
  4. Talk about extracurricular activities. Getting involved in clubs and other groups is a great way for your child to identify interests and feel more engaged in school.
  5. Discuss ways to take on challenges. Encourage your child to take the most-challenging courses that he or she can handle. Tackling tough courses can give your child confidence and prepare him or her for higher-level high school classes.
  6. Come up with fun reading ideas. Look for magazines or newspapers your child may like and talk about the books you loved reading when you were your child’s age. If your family makes reading enjoyable, it can become a daily habit.
  7. Visit a nearby college together. If you live near a college, look for upcoming events on campus that are open to the community or see if the college offers classes to local children and families. Just being on a campus may get your child interested in college.
  8. Get the big picture on paying for college. It’s not too early to learn the basics of financial aid.

Omega Learning® Center is AdvancED accredited nationwide and provides tutoring and test preparation services for grades K-12. To find a learning center near you, visit OmegaLearning.com.

Source: https://bigfuture.collegeboard.org/get-started/for-parents/parent-action-plan-middle-school

Parents: 9 Back to School Pro Tips

Back to school time can be a hectic time for both you and the kiddos. These are some of our best back to school tips to help ensure this school year gets off to a great start!

1. Visit the school

Walk or ride the route your child will take and make note of school patrols, crossing guards and high traffic areas along the way. Talk to your kids about NOT talking to strangers and find out what, if any, policies your child’s school has regarding early arrivals or late pick-ups. Learn about the school’s entrance and exit policies. Then, if you can, pop in and check out what the inside of the school looks like.

2. Introduce yourself to your child’s teacher

Introduce yourself to your child’s teacher and ask him or her about the preferred method of communication. (Some teachers are active on email and social media, while others prefer the phone or in-person meetings.)

3. Make homework a priority

Make homework time a daily habit. Find a quiet and consistent place at home where your child can complete his or her homework. If your child is having difficulty with his or her homework, make an appointment with the teacher sooner rather than later.

4. Prepare a study area

Set up a special place at home to do school work and homework. Remove distractions. Make it clear that education is a top priority in your family: show interest and praise your child’s work.

5. Take charge of TV time 

Limit the time that you let your child watch TV, and when you do decide to do TV time, make it a family affair. Talk together about what you see and ask questions after the show ends.

6. Get everyone to bed on time

During the summer, children aren’t always on a schedule, which is understandable. But, proper rest is essential for a healthy and productive school year. Help your kids get back on track sleep-wise by having them go to bed earlier and wake up earlier at least a week in advance of when school actually starts.

7. Make healthy meals

Let’s face it – no one can concentrate when they’re hungry. Studies show that children who eat healthy, balanced breakfasts and lunches do better in school. Fix nutritious meals at home, and, if you need extra help, find out if your family qualifies for any child nutrition programs, like the National School Lunch Program.

8. Get a check up

It’s a good idea to take your child in for a physical and an eye exam before school starts. Most schools require up-to-date immunizations, and you may be asked to provide paperwork showing that your child has all the necessary shots and vaccines. So, check your state’s immunization requirements. And, always keep your own copies of any medical records.

9. Plan to read with your child everyday

Make a plan to read with your child for 20 minutes every day. Your example reinforces the importance of literacy, and reading lets you and your child explore new worlds of fun and adventure together.

 

Omega Learning® Center is AdvancED accredited nationwide and provides tutoring and test preparation services for grades K-12. To find a learning center near you, visit OmegaLearning.com.

Source: https://blog.ed.gov/2016/08/9-back-to-school-pro-tips/

How to Handle Back-to-School Anxiety

 

Feelings of anxiety are perfectly normal and to be expected during times of transition. While many people think of separation anxiety as a problem confined to toddlers and preschoolers, I also see it in elementary and middle school kids. And back-to-school anxiety can occur clear through high school!

Some kids are more hard-wired for anxious thoughts and feelings than others. While some level of anxiety affects most people, high levels of anxiety can be disruptive to both the child and the whole family.

Know the Signs
Some worries are to be expected. It’s not easy to walk into a new classroom with a new teacher and start from scratch every single year. Watch for these sneaky symptoms of anxiety as the new school year begins:

  • changes in eating habits
  • sleep disturbance
  • clingy behavior
  • meltdowns or tantrums
  • nail biting, hair twirling, skin picking
  • headaches or stomach pains
  • avoiding normal daily activities
  • increased irritability
  • increased crying
  • social isolation

If your child exhibits some of these symptoms for more than two weeks, get an evaluation. Many children can work through back-to-school anxiety independently, but when anxiety interferes with normal daily living, kids need help.

How to Deal with Back-to-School Anxiety
Consistency and routines are always a great place to start when it comes to squashing those back-to-school worries! Try some of these strategies to help your child ease into the new school year:

Attend school (and be early!). While it’s perfectly normal to have worries when starting a new school year, it’s very important to attend school each day. A huge meltdown might have you wondering if you should simply try another day, but avoidance of school will only increase and reinforce your child’s anxiety. Missing school because of anxiety robs your child of the chance to gain mastery, make friends, enjoy a successful school day and develop a relationship with the teacher.

Get back to basics. It’s very difficult to feel calm, confident and in control when you are starving or exhausted. Anxiety can cause kids to struggle with sleep and eat a little less. This means that parents have to stay on top of those childhood basics.

Set an earlier bedtime for the entire family, make sure each day includes plenty of downtime, and provide balanced meals and nutritious snacks with plenty of time to eat. Eating on the run is stressful for kids.

Allow extra time in the mornings. Anxious children don’t like to be late, nor do they enjoy being rushed. Now that you’ve pushed that bedtime up, your child should be able to wake with plenty of time to eat, get dressed and get ready for the day.

Create healthy nighttime routines to make the mornings easier. Choosing clothes at night, packing snacks and filling water bottles and packing the backpack and placing it by the door are all time savers for anxious kids.

Avoid blanket statements. When kids express worries about school, it’s tempting to respond with generic statements such as, “Don’t worry about it!” or “You’ll love it!” These statements rarely provide reassurance for worriers. A better tactic is to address specific worries with your child.

When parents take the time to listen and help children come up with strategies to solve problems, kids feel more confident. If your child is worried about where to sit at lunch, for example, have him draw a map of the lunchroom and discuss possibilities.

Role-play. The best way to gain mastery over worries is to practice taking control of worrisome situations. Have your child create a list of school-related worries and act out different ways to solve the problems. I like to have kids try out two or three solutions per problem so that they always have a back-up plan.

Watch your words. Kids look to their parents for clues. If you appear overwhelmed and anxious on the first day of school, your child is likely to follow your lead.

It’s perfectly natural for parents to have worries at the beginning of the school year. Instead of hyper-focusing on the potential negatives or faking it, take the time to talk about feelings and worries as a family. When families work through their feelings together, they empower one another.

Back-to-school anxiety can be stressful for families. More often than not, the anxiety decreases as the child adjusts to the new school year. If the anxiety persists, seek help. It’s far better to learn to manage anxious feelings than to suffer in silence and struggle through the school year.

Source: http://www.pbs.org/parents/expert-tips-advice/2016/08/cope-back-school-anxiety/

6 Ways to Get Organized for Back to School

Putting the following strategies into action now will save a lot of time and anxiety later.

  1. Shift your schedules. The lazy, unstructured days of summer are ending, and so is your child’s freedom to sleep in and eat erratically. Ease them back into a school schedule by shifting their bedtime back to a school-day bedtime and waking them closer to the hour they’ll need to rise.
  2. Have a morning routine run-through. The week before school starts, start getting your child up, dressed, and fed at the same times as you would on a school day. Both you and your child will benefit from a few practice runs to smooth out trouble spots and get comfortable with the routine.
  3. Clean house. Go through your child’s clothes, and get rid of anything they have outgrown or worn threadbare. It’ll be easier to choose outfits if there’s less clutter. Do a thorough cleaning of their room and study area as well.
  4. Stock up on supplies. After you and your child are through cleaning, make a list of everything they’ll need for the coming year, from socks to crayons. Ask their teacher or the school for a list of supplies, and check what’s missing. Buy extras of essential items and store them for later.
  5. Get papers in order. While you’re calling the school, ask what paperwork your child will need to start. Take care of any missing vaccinations or forms ASAP, then gather all the papers in a large, clearly marked envelope or file and photocopy everything.
  6. Create calendar and file central. Set up an area with a large calendar so everyone in your family can see everyone else’s plans for that month. For added organization, color-code each family member and keep colored markers nearby so everyone can easily mark plans. Pen in after-school activities, lessons, play-dates, and family time. Nearby, set up file baskets or bins marked “To Be Signed,” “From School,” and “To School,” so your child can deposit papers you need to see in a regular place right after school and pick up things to go “To School” each morning.

Omega Learning® Center is AdvancED accredited nationwide and provides tutoring and test preparation services for grades K-12. To find a learning center near you, visit OmegaLearning.com.

Source: http://www.scholastic.com/parents/resources/article/back-to-school/6-ways-to-get-organized-back-to-school

School Fun Facts Around the World

There are many differences in the various school systems. The date school starts, the age at which the kids start, grading systems, approach and teaching philosophy – the variation is huge. Here are 15 exciting and fun facts about schools around the world.

1.In Germany, school kids are given a school cone (Schultüte) on their first day of school. It can be filled with sweets, snacks, art supplies, lunch boxes, little books and small gifts. They can only open it at school. Children don’t have to be able to write their names on entering schools- although they must be able to hold a pen properly. School readiness is decided on not only physical development but also social skills.

2. Russian children always start school on September 12st even if it’s a holiday, or the weekend. This is referred as Knowledge Day (День Знаний)- and marks both the first day of school and the first day of autumn. Most kids bring a change of shoes to school. Elementary school through high school are usually in the same building.

3. Dutch children go to school on their fourth birthday. This results in some chaos as new kids are added to the class throughout the year during the first year (called groep 1 or kleuterklas). The kids get to play and learn social skills and only start “real school” when they’re 6 (groep 3). However, school is not compulsory until the kids are 5 years old.

4. Polish kids have to wear strój galowy- a formal costume– usually a white blouse with navy blue pants or skirts for the girls and suits for the boys for the first day of school and school ceremonies. There’s also an opening ceremony where the kids are sworn in as students of the first class.

5. On April Fool’s Day 2015, it was announced that Canada was to introduce a year-round school by 2017. It’s not true! However, school kids in Canada are offered many bilingual (English and French) options.

6. Singaporean schools have recently enjoyed their 5 minutes of fame and al because of a math problem. It went viral, causing a stir and even a hashtag on its very own- #WhenIsCherylsBirthday. it came from a test for students gifted in math and stirred a discussion about school quality around the world. Here’s the problem– can you solve it?

7. Finnish schools are considered the best in the world. They’re also very hands-off: no grades until year three. There are no national tests until the 12th year and subsequently much less pressure on teachers as school results cannot be compared. Teachers are trusted and respected and they have a lot of autonomy.

8. Japanese kids are expected to go to school by themselves and they also clean have to the classroom. There is no canteen; children are expected to bring packed lunches to school. They’re often very beautifully arranged into so called bento boxes. It is customary for the grandparents to buy the school bag calledrandoseru.

9. French kids are served a 3-course meal for lunch. The French education system has been made famous by Karen le Billon in her book (French Kids Eat Everything) that described the French approach to eating (did you know that schools hire nutritionists and special chefs to cook for the kids?) On the other side, the system is very rigid and strict.

10. The school year in Kenya is divided into trimesters (the academic year is divided into three parts, not two) not semesters. The parents are expected to pay for the children’s school. Most students attend school even though they don’t have to.

11. In Taiwan, children attending elementary schools would wear new uniform, carry new school bag, have a new pencil box (yes, pencil box, that is always a very fun shopping trip) and carry a home lunch box (optional).

12. In Australia, the longest holiday is actually the Christmas holiday! Summer officially lasts from December to February, and therefore includes Christmas and New Year holidays. Typically Christmas summer holiday in Australia last approximately six weeks, usually from mid-December (depending on school year, see below) to late January.

13. Schools in Nigeria start in January and end in December. The academic year is divided into trimesters and there are 2 months off between each one. Nigerian schools are also very strict about dress code – even including hair styles, jewellery and accessories.

14. Parents of kids in Swiss schools have to pick them up for lunch. The children get a lunch break between 12 and 2pm and that’s when they get home to have lunch. As mothers enter the workforce in bigger and bigger numbers, a specialMittagstisch (literally lunch table) is set up for the kids with working parents.

15. In Brazil, schools run from 7am to noon so that the kids can eat lunch with their parents. However, in Brazil there are three sessions per day to meet the demands for space. Kids attend one session per day.

Source: http://www.europeanmama.com/15-fun-facts-about-schools-around-the-world/

How Omega Can Help Your Student

Back-to-school is here and it can be an exciting (and stressful) time for both parents and students. One of the reasons why parents worry is because they are afraid their child might fall behind in school. One out of five students will have trouble keeping up academically at some point during their school year. No matter what the cause might be for your child, Omega Learning® Center is here to help.

  • Omega helps students who have just begun having difficulty with a subject or combination of subjects. They may have even achieved straight “A’s” all through elementary school. Now their skill gaps are evident through falling grades and confidence.
  • Omega helps students who have always struggled in school and don’t know why. Their grades are inconsistent and they lack confidence. They have never had their child tested and are concerned there may be a learning disability or ADHD.
  • Omega helps students who know they have a learning disability. These students know their deficiencies and respond well to year-round tutoring. They know Omega could never fill all of the skills gaps in all of their academic areas. Our tutors complement their IEP accommodations in school.
  • Omega helps students who want to maintain their good grades through honors classes. They are concerned that, without our extra help, they will fall behind. The Woodcock Johnson may show advanced grade placement or no skill gaps. But our goal is to ease their anxiety throughout the school year with classes as needed.
  • Omega helps students who want to improve a letter grade. This is the average student who just needs that extra help. The student needs us to keep them focused throughout the school year with test preparation, homework help, and study skills.
  • Omega helps students who need the instruction and/or positive reinforcement that a tutor can provide. Some children are very shy and lack self-confidence. They don’t ask questions publicly in school. They do OK with classwork, but freeze on tests and quizzes with performance anxiety.
  • Omega helps students who need homework help because of poor study skills and time management. They need our structured homework environment and study skills instruction (time management, agenda organization, test prep, listening skills, note-taking).

Omega Learning® Center offers Tutoring K-12 with certified teachers for every subject in school. Find a center near you. http://OmegaLearning.com

Tutoring K12 Certified Teachers