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Whenever someone starts test prep, he or she always wants to know, "Can you teach me the TRICKS?" The short anwer to this is, yes of course I can. But, truthfully, so can anyone with a practice test book and a heartbeat. These mythical tricks that have been passed down from generation to generation...they're mildly interesting at best.
Here, you want to know a trick that every test prep company since the dawn of time has used, and attempted to label as a "trick" or "strategy" that is unique?
Work backwards from the answer choices in Math.
So, yes, I can, and I will, teach you some tricks. I'll also make sure that you know how to do the Math that's on there. I'll give you what will likely be the first grammar lesson you have received since grade school. I'll try with all of my might to make the Reading Comprehension sections seem infinitesimally compelling, and I will wow you with my intensive knowledge of test prep history.
I'll do ALL of that, but there's so much more.
Imagine your kid NOT dreading his tutoring session?
I have been in this business for over a decade, and in that time I have seen my students become more and more advanced academically at younger and younger ages. As a result, the landscape of high school life has become extremely competitive. Just a few weeks ago, 5 of my students cancelled their sessions in one week because they were too inundated with school work. Kids are stressed and tired, and adding test prep to the top of the pile can feel like unwarranted torture.
So, here is our radical, life-altering strategy: We talk to them. We connect with them and treat them like the young adults that they are. For them these tests feel like impossible obstacles to getting into college. If we don't address and strategize our way around that pressure and anxiety, we are done for.
So, and please don't reveal this to any of the other companies because I don't want to be giving away trade secrets here, we also laugh. There are many times when a tutoring session can feel like therapy for the whole family. Speaking of which, I am all about keeping parents informed of what is happening in a tutorial at all times. We need to all be on the same team!
Truth be told: I'm an entertainer at heart. I was a musical theater performer, director, and producer in a former life, and those skills and passions have never left me. I bring them into every dining room, living room, and library in which I tutor. Standardized tests may not be as entertaining as Hamilton, or, let's be honest, watching grass grow, but I do my very best to be as compelling as is humanly possible.
Oh, and practice tests. Lots and lots of practice tests. So many practice tests.
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