Tag Archives: success

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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At this moment when so many are completing their studies in high school, college, or graduate school, we’d like to share artist Grant Snider’s inspiring message to a graduate: To get an education, you must jump through many hoops. Some are ultra-competitive. Others require perfect timing. Many will seem unreachable at first. There will be moments of boredom. You will be burned. And even embarrassed. But often, your imagination will be sparked. With luck and coordination, you will reach the final hoop… and arrive at a place where hoops are scarcely seen. Should you stop jumping? No! Now you must create your own hoops. Good luck, graduates!

Author James Clear offers pithy and prolific insights into many aspects of life. His wisdom hits home quite often the realms of productivity and success. I’m partial to this statement about mastery: “Mastery requires both impatience and patience. The impatience to have a bias toward action, to not waste time, and to work with a sense of urgency each day. The patience to delay gratification, to wait for your actions to accumulate, and to trust the process.” Test prep is all about reaching for mastery, attaining mastery for a moment, and displaying mastery when called upon. Be impatient to earn your best test scores: embrace a bias toward action and get to work. Be patient to prove your best test scores: Create a clear plan for success and work that plan. Leverage spaced repetition and the testing effect to improve over time, ideally under the tutelage of an expert coach.…

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The standard school year feels like a long slog, where students begin knowing very little in certain subjects and finish fearing that they’ve learned little more over seven or eight months of instruction. All those culminating exams from finals, APs, and state tests to the SAT and ACT may feel like obstacles in the way of a lovely summer break, but they actually represent critical opportunities to lock in learning and prove that a long year of study was not spent in vain. June is here. Crush the SAT, ACT, and every other test in your way. On the other side lies a long summer with plenty of time to rest, play, and prepare for future challenges!

No matter what else is happening in the world, the Olympics have always commanded attention. If you ever doubt the burning will to exceed all limits inherent in all of us, just look at the dedication these indomitable athletes exemplify. No spectacle captures the world’s imagination on such a grand scale. But we’re not tuning in to catch up on air rifle or luge or any of the other hundreds of sometimes obscure events (race walking… really?) we somehow ignore every other week of the year. No, we thrill to the competition, the effort, and the unquenchable commitment to win. Everyone on the path to their best test scores and grades can learn what being the best really requires from those who have paid the costs and reaped the rewards–including Gold Medals and enshrinement on boxes of Wheaties–of enduring excellence… “We all have dreams. But in order to make dreams…

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One of the great conundrums of human history has surely been how to motivate teens to do what society wants them to do rather than what they themselves want to do. Your average high schooler may happily spend marathon sessions practicing sports, playing games, or just scrolling through social media but still balk at ten minutes of homework or chores. Unsurprisingly, researchers have been delving the depths of student motivation for decades, exploring a variety of angles across age groups and cultures. Some of the findings aren’t that surprising either, though others seem rather unexpected. An overview of the current research encompassing over 144 studies and more than 79,000 students has been published as Pathways to Student Motivation: A Meta-Analysis of Antecedents of Autonomous and Controlled Motivations, and the key takeaways of this meta-analysis are powerful: Students’ self-determined motivation (acting out of interest, curiosity, and abiding values) is associated with…

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