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Why We Train All of Our Academic Tutors on Study Skills


AJ Tutoring is a team of professional academic and test prep tutors who deeply enjoy helping students reach their potential in class and on test day. If you visit our Meet our Team page and start reading, you’ll be amazed by the diversity of interests, talents, and skill sets that our educators bring to their work with Bay Area students.

While we have tutors who specialize in a range of subjects, such as biology, math, and world history, one lynchpin skill that all of our academic tutors share is the ability to help students develop effective study skills. Some of our students come in asking for help specifically with study skills, and we have an excellent approach to work with those students. Many of our students, though, call requesting help for a specific subject or two. We pair each student with an academic expert who can help them engage with the curriculum at a deep level and see success in class.

But there is another benefit many of these students are getting: study skills support. All of our academic tutors undergo an intensive study skills training course in order to be able to coach students on note-taking, critical reading, time management, and more. These abilities are paramount for success in any high school course and beyond, so we feel it’s important that our tutors are able to incorporate these foundational skills into each and every academic lesson. Because we specialize in 1-on-1 tutoring, the process is seamless. Our tutors can identify and work to develop the unique study skills needs of each student.

If you’d like to sign your student up for academic tutoring, please give us a call. Read on to find a few examples of how we help students build core skills.

#1: Jenna’s Geometry Jump Start

It’s October, and geometry is turning out to be Jenna’s toughest course of sophomore year. She signs up with one of our geometry tutors, who works with her to build her proof-writing skills and prepare for geometry tests.

It becomes clear that, in addition to the complex content, the tests present a unique challenge because they include questions that don’t directly resemble Jenna’s homework questions. In sessions, Jenna and our geometry expert create study guides that have questions of increasing difficulty that extend even beyond the most tricky homework problems. In addition, Jenna learns that the aim of each unit is to understand the core concepts on a deep level so that they can be applied beyond the specific examples offered in the textbook.

#2: Eva’s English Essay Excellence

Eva is one of the most eloquent 8th graders you will ever meet. If you ask her about her favorite character in Madeline L’Engel’s A Wrinkle in Time, Eva can launch into a lengthy and articulate explanation of how the novel speaks to the experiences of youth across time. However, Eva has been having trouble in English class, so her family calls AJ Tutoring to help identify any issues and apply her literary strengths to success in her coursework.

Our English expert, after examining some of Eva’s essays and observing her develop a thesis statement for an assignment, notices that Eva always has keen ideas about the topic but could improve on her essay-writing process.

Eva learns that successful writers follow a multi-step process that involves brainstorming, collecting evidence, outlining, drafting, and revising. Understanding each step takes pressure off the writing itself and assures that the structure of the essay is carefully considered to highlight Eva’s best ideas. Our English tutor also helps Eva develop a template schedule she can use to plan out future English assignments so that she has plenty of time to complete each step of the composition process before the due date.

#3: Samantha’s Summer Study Skills Support

It’s June, and Samantha is ready to relax after a job well done. Freshman year was a joy and a challenge with honors classes and after-school sports. Though she’s looking forward to next year, Samantha is also pretty nervous because she knows classes will get tougher. She also remembers how stressed out she was ahead of important exams during freshman year and wonders if she could have done better on some of them with more studying.

Samantha and her family decide to get a head start on sophomore year by signing up for our study skills basics course. After a few sessions with her tutor, Samantha has already learned a lot about learning and has considered some of the skills she’ll need to master in order to achieve her potential in high school. Upon reflection, Samantha realizes that some of her freshman year stress could have been lessened if she’d planned ahead for exams by breaking down the studying process into manageable steps. With upgraded note-taking skills, a well-organized binder system, and a color-coded calendar, Samantha is ready and excited for sophomore year!

No matter your student’s needs, we are here to help. Click here to read up on our academic tutoring and here to speak with a director!

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