Tag Archives: performance

Everybody knows that practice makes perfect, or rather that perfect practice makes perfect. Once you have adopted the four essential elements of deliberate practice, you have taken your first steps towards the wildest levels of success you can imagine… as long as you practice. If you are a striver, then, the question you’ll always be grappling with is this: “Should you be practicing now?” Thankfully, Bruce Lee has all the answers…     Shouldn’t you be practicing now?

What do we want? Super high test scores! When do we want them? Now! Of course, we all want not just our highest test scores but the highest test scores. And, obviously, we want them in the shortest time possible. But how much improvement is really possible in just a handful of weeks? A student recently asked, “How can I increase my SAT score of 1000 to 1450 in a month?” I didn’t sugarcoat my initial response: you probably can’t. That assessment may sound harsh, but consider the facts, adjusted by 10 points to make for more accurate analysis. According to our ultimate ACT/SAT Concordance Table, an SAT score of 1010 is in the 44th percentile. An SAT score of 1450 represents the 98th percentile. Considering that roughly two million graduating college bound seniors take the SAT every year, this student wants to outscore approximately 1,080,000 peers who are currently…

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Everybody knows how nerve-wracking high stakes tests can be. Less widely known are all the effective ways to combat and ultimately overcome test anxiety. Spend an hour to learn insights that can relieve a lifetime of stress. What causes test anxiety? Why is a certain amount of anxiety helpful in critical situations? What strategies help manage response to stress in the moment? What strategies help manage response to stress in advance?    Our Overcoming Test Anxiety seminar explains test anxiety comes from, why it’s not always a bad thing, and what you can do about it. Learn the fundamentals of stress and success from a veteran educator with a background in counseling and performance management. The fee for this seminar is just $25, and advance registration is required. Register through our Student Information Form and specify the April Overcoming Test Anxiety seminar. We will reply to registrants by email with the invitation to this Zoom…

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I recently shared a fascinating conversation with Ned Johnson, co-author of The Self-Driven Child: The Science and Sense of Giving Your Kids More Control Over Their Lives. We were recording the Tests and the Rest episode on Creating a Homeschool Plan During a Crisis (highly recommended) when he started talking about nuts. Actually, he was talking about response to stress, which then led to a discourse on nuts–and not even in the context of allergies. This isn’t as weird as it sounds, though, assuming you are familiar with the groundbreaking work of Sonia Lupien. Dr. Sonia Lupien, the current Canada Research Chair on Human Stress, is the founder and director of the Centre for Studies on Human Stress. Her research into the effects of stress on the human brain have uncovered some interesting insights, including that of the relativity of stress. In a nutshell–pardon the pun–what I find exciting (world…

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No matter how much or well you practice, your score comes down to how well you perform when it counts. While we rightly focus on what happens on test day, we’d be remiss if we ignored that all-important night before test day. You cannot guarantee a given score but you can guarantee that you arrive relaxed, confident, and prepared to earn that score by following these three steps: Pack everything you’ll need the night before. Don’t wait until you wake up to get your essential gear together. If you’ll need to present ID and an admissions ticket, make sure you locate them before you turn in for the night. Also assemble a comfortable wardrobe with layers in case your testing environment is too warm or too cold. Pack performance snacks, water, and tissues. Also make sure that any calculator you bring is fully charged. Directions to an unfamiliar test center…

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Gum chewing’s fine every once in a while. It freshens your breath and brightens your smile. But the Oompa Loompas at Willy Wonka’s factory would have you thinking it was all downhill from there when, in fact, even a blueberry of a daughter may be chewing her way to an advantage over her non-chewing peers. A variety of studies have uncovered ways in which the act of chewing gum increases energy, focuses attention, improves performance, and reduces stress, all of which are keys to success on test day. Consider the facts: ENERGY Scientists at Coventry University found that subjects chewing mint gum felt less sleepy than those not chewing gum or practicing chewing without the gum (which sounds tiring). The Pupillographic Sleepiness Test (PST) confirmed that gum chewers were less sleepy than other subjects. The researchers could not, however, determine whether the reduction in daytime sleepiness resulted from heightened cerebral…

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