Chariot Learning Blog

In what is starting to become an annual tradition, I recorded a special parent seminar on testing and admissions for College and Career Night at an awesome local school district. I look forward to the days when convening large groups live and in-person doesn’t feel so fraught with peril, because asynchronous sessions don’t allow for real-time dialog. On the bright side, once an updated informational seminar is recorded, it can be shared infinitely. So enjoy! College Admissions Testing for the HS Classes of 2022 and 2023 Q&A What are the SAT and ACT, why do they matter, and what can and should teens and their families do about them during this dynamic moment in college admissions history? The admissions landscape has seen more change over the last three years as during the three decades before that, so make sure you stay on top of the newest developments: — Will the…

Read more

While most applicants expect to earn a Bachelor’s degree in four years, more than half will fail to do so. In fact, fewer than two-thirds of students manage to finish even within six years. Considering how quickly the cost of college has been increasing, those extra years of college come at a tremendous cost. What kind of questions should high schoolers and their families be asking when considering why students don’t complete college in four years? Why does finishing a four-year degree on time matter? What academic issues keep students from finishing college on time? What credit and career planning issues keep students from finishing college on time? What role do or should colleges play in facilitating on-time completion? How can parents prepare high schoolers to finish their degrees on time? To understand both the massive scope and potential solutions to this common problem, I spoke with Rochester-based educational consultant…

Read more

As we approach another Thanksgiving, thoughts naturally turn to what we feel grateful for. Another way to celebrate is to deeply consider why we should be grateful for those things in life we have to deal with, regardless of how much we like them. Few teens look forward to tests like the SAT and ACT; fewer still actually enjoy them. But do these exams represent a necessary evil or a golden opportunity? Imagine yourself as a high school student eager to attend selective institutions, access prestigious honors programs, or earn enough merit scholarship to defray the ever-rising cost of college. Now think about how you’d feel about your prospects if any or all of the following applied to you… …if your grades don’t reflect your ability. …if you suffered some academic setbacks along the way. …if your excellent grades are undermined by your school’s academic reputation. …if you couldn’t find…

Read more

Don’t let the big tests in life master you.

Once we agree that all tests–especially the influential and high stakes ones–should be prepared for (and they obviously should be) the next questions focus more on methods and means. Considering the wide range of test prep material out there from books to online programs to classes to tutoring, teens and their families can be understandably intimidated by the choice, especially when factors like fit, quality, cost, and interactivity come into play. I answer questions about which types of test prep are best for different students, but rarely are my answers recorded. Luckily, my Tests and the Rest partner Amy Seeley and I were recently interviewed by the unstoppable Linda Abraham. Not only has Linda, as the founder of Accepted, helped countless applicants gain admission to top medical, law, business and graduate schools over decades, she is also a leading educational podcaster. Amy and I had her on our podcast to…

Read more

While American culture celebrates individual differences and promotes diversity, many of our societal systems struggle with anyone who deviates too far from an accepted norm. This can certainly be the case in school; the entire model of group instruction depends on cohorts that learn the same material in the same way at the same pace. Obviously, not every child fits this mold. Advancing understanding of the way humans think and learn has changed our dialogue around learning disabilities. Instead of framing challenges as disorders, we now look at divergence. Sociologist Judy Singer coined the term neurodiversity to describe “the limitless variability of human cognition and the uniqueness of each human mind.” Assuming that someone is disabled because he doesn’t learn the way his classmates does represents outdated beliefs that ignore what we’ve always accepted about people: disadvantages in some areas generally accompany advantages in other areas. Thus, neurodivergent simply describes…

Read more

6/723