Tag Archives: coaching

Happy New Year! The fresh canvas of a new year inspires most of us to select some (possibly most) areas in our lives to improve in specific ways. We at Chariot Learning certainly do. Deliberate improvement over time is something I think a lot about. Here at the intersection of education and performance, we see lots of students looking for better grades and test scores. Obviously, we want the same for them along with greater proficiency in our ability to support our students. Our most recent and sixth consecutive Best Of Rochester award for tutoring makes for a nice picture, but best is just a moment. Better is a process. Better does not come easy. Becoming better than you were in any dimension of your life may be a worthy goal. Staying better–being able to cast aside bad habits and develop new, more adaptive ones–is another thing entirely. How do…

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Top athletes and singers have coaches. Should you? That was the subheader of a fascinating 2011 article in the New Yorker penned by an enlightened surgeon. Atul Gawande noticed how his surgical skills had plateaued in a predictable, professionally accepted way. While he was coming to terms with this presumably inevitable fact of life, he also experienced how impactful even a single lesson with a tennis pro was in improving his game. Then he connected the dots: “Not long afterward, I watched Rafael Nadal play a tournament match on the Tennis Channel. The camera flashed to his coach, and the obvious struck me as interesting: even Rafael Nadal has a coach. Nearly every élite tennis player in the world does. Professional athletes use coaches to make sure they are as good as they can be. “But doctors don’t. I’d paid to have a kid just out of college look at…

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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…

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Anyone with even a passing knowledge of basketball will recognize the name of Michael Jordan, widely considered one of the best–if not the very best–players of all time. Jordan combined ferocious physical and mental strength with incomparable skill and an indefatigable will to win. However, he attributes his legendary success to one train above all others: My best skill was that I was coachable. I was a sponge and aggressive to learn. What does “coachable” mean? Have you ever met someone who seems sure he or she knows it all, someone who has no interest or perhaps even ability to learn from others? How about someone who crumbles under even constructive criticism, externalizing failure or blame? Those are definitely NOT examples of coachability. Instead, consider the traits someone who is coachable shows consistently: Interested in becoming better, even if that requires hard work Willing to listen and learn Eager to…

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We like to think that anyone who works with Chariot Learning recognizes our commitment to the same levels of coaching, practice, and incremental improvement over time we teach our students. Simply put, every member of the team embraces the challenge of being a true test prep and/or tutoring professional rather than a hobbyist or dilettante. That level of industry understanding, educational expertise, and executive function makes a massive difference in student outcomes and does not happen by accident. How does the Chariot Learning stay ahead of important developments in education and testing while delivering quality prep and practice testing to over 1000 students across Upstate New York a year? How did we nail the Best of Rochester Award in the Tutoring Service category for two years in a row? The answer is simple: professional development. When your founder has over 25 years of experience in the test prep industry and…

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If you’re looking for dramatic improvement in any endeavor, you can’t escape the two drivers of profound, positive change: coaching and practice. Of the two, practice seems to be self-explanatory. Better takes practice. No one can argue that. But why does coaching matter just as much? Couldn’t a properly motivated individual with sufficient time and resources self-prep to wild success? Perhaps, but the common route to uncommon achievement always involves one or more exceptional coaches. Just ask your favorite performer or athlete–assuming you can get access! Even Bill Gates, one of the most successful (if you use wealth as a measure of success) self-made businessmen of all time believes in the necessity of coaching: “Everyone needs a coach. It doesn’t matter whether you’re a basketball player, a tennis player, a gymnast or a bridge player.” Coaching matters because true greatness does not occur by accident. We who seek to achieve…

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