Archive for the 'Parents Of Students' Category

NOT staying in school is not a (financial) option

As college graduates take to the street, searching for the first jobs of their careers, many are unsure if it was worth it.

Recent statistics reveal college grads made 98% more an hour on average than people without a degree in 2013, which is up from 89% in 2008 and 64% in the early ’80s.

But since the numbers are based on averages, we need to look at the details to see there are big differences in experience among individuals within groups of both graduates and non-graduates.

There is no question the pay gap between the college educated and everyone else is getting bigger.

It’s also true that the unemployment rate for college graduates right now, is remarkably low. For college grads between ages 25 and 34, the unemployment rate is currently around 3%!

Here is the paradox:

College grads are not making headway;
instead non-graduates are losing ground.

The income paid to college grads, on average, has remained flat,
but the wages of non-graduates have fallen.

To look at it a different way, college graduates are now taking jobs away from non-graduates. This reality is reflected in several recent studies and in U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics data. According to The Center for College Affordability and Productivity, in 2008 roughly 38% of working college graduates were in positions that didn’t require a degree. By 2013, that number had increased to 48%.

Not every Starbucks barista is a college graduate, but many of them are.

So what happens to you if you are a non-graduate who didn’t get that job?

It’s unlikely you will be moving up in the corporate world, skipping over all those college graduates to take higher-paying positions above them.

Don’t blame employers for this. If an open position doesn’t require a college degree, but 50 out of 200 applicants have a degree, why wouldn’t they choose a college graduate?

That’s why you need to STAY IN SCHOOL and graduate, your financial future depends on it.

No one said it was fair, it’s just the way it is.

Of course if you have a college degree – YOU WANT THIS ADVANTAGE over non-graduates – don’t you?!?!

Tweets – they might prevent you from getting into college

If you read my other blogs, you know I am not a fan of social media, including Twitter and Facebook. It isn’t just because I think they are an incredible waste of time, but primarily because of the privacy violation aspects. You can about that on my Internet Marketing Blog and search for Privacy Pirates to learn more

Since this blog is focused on students, you should read this New York Times article on the cost of students tweeting indiscriminately. It could prevent you from getting into the college you want.

I always tell people – if you don’t want your tweet on the front page of tomorrow’s newspaper – don’t do it!

 

 

 

Why you are “in school” is not the reason you might think…

Recently, George, an engineering student in Egypt, was sharing with me his challenges with school. He is making the mistake many students make, thinking they are in school to learn calculus, chemistry or any other “subject” matter.

The reality is that you are a student in high school and/or university for one reason only – to learn HOW to learn…

Depending on what you are studying, you will acquire and develop different learning (cognitive skills).

Engineers learn problem solving skills.
Lawyers learn interpretive skills.
Doctors learn diagnostic skills.

Once you realise this, your life as a student changes.

If you are in high school or university, you may INTEND to practice engineering, medicine or law, but the reality is that most students do something ELSE with the education following graduation. Once they launch their careers, they leverage their acquired skills to the extent they developed them WHILE they were students. The paradox is that unless you study like an engineer, doctor or lawyer, you simply cannot (as easily) acquire THOSE particular skills. You need to develop those skills WHILE you are a student…

When you study across disciplines as I have, social science, engineering, business and law, you realise that each skill set has its place in society.

The BIG question for you to ask yourself as a student is – “what skill(s) do you want to have once you graduate?”

MOTIVATION: Two types of students

There are two types of students:

Moving towards students – who want to get the top grades, look good, win a medal, make more money.

Moving away from students – who don’t want to fail, look fat, don’t want to lose a game and don’t want to lose the money they have.

Which one are you?

The reason I ask is because what works to MOTIVATE a MOVING TOWARDS student won’t work for a MOVING AWAY FROM student.

I don’t know you, but ask yourself: Are you focused more on NOT flunking an exam than acing it?

This is important to know because the ONLY thing that motivates a MOVING AWAY FROM student is FEAR OF LOSS, FAILING a course or exam.

They only pick up their books when they know they have to otherwise they will fail. They don’t exercise until their pants are too tight… They NEVER invest their money – they let it sit there in a bank account SAFE, not earning much interest.

Unfortunately, these students are rarely successful in the general sense of the word.

They can have a very “good” life, but the ultimate rewards escape them because they are not willing to do what it takes, they lack the HUNGER and DRIVE.

Fear overtakes them – all the time.

Reduction of RISK is different than achieving an ACCOMPLISHMENT.

Without the FEAR OF LOSS, there is no hunger, motivation.

With school, these students must FEAR that their lives will be DRAMATICALLY different without good grades or the right degree. Unfortunately they usually do the degree for the wrong reason (fear instead of desire) but if it’s the right degree, then it is still a good thing to get.

Getting a generic bachelor’s degree is no longer worth anything these days. It’s a necessity, but no longer a worthwhile investment – just like a high school diploma is worthless – UNLESS you don’t have one. It has become a necessity, but there is a HUGE cost to getting one if it’s not a valuable degree.

Kids today are mostly spoiled. They get driven to and from school, have iPhones, iPads, all the sports equipment they need, etc.. The ONLY problem with all that is they have NO HUNGER, NO DESIRE.

That being said, it’s a hard thing for young students to deal with. The real question is:

Are you happy to FOLLOW or
will you TAKE THE LEAD in your own life?

That is the question.

If you are female, once you read the book Lean In, you’ll have a better appreciation for the forces at play – not that you don’t already know this, it’s just a great way of seeing the situation.

All I know is that anyone, anytime can alter their destiny – IF THEY WANT IT ENOUGH.

Easier said than done, which is why most (80%) of the population don’t do it.

It is VERY COMPLEX and each person has his/her own story / baggage / history to deal with.

It requires:

  • A LOT of drive, determination and discipline.
  • A LOT of heart, desire and passion.
  • A LOT of trials, testing and realignment.
  • A LOT of self-belief, confidence and courage.
  • A LOT of patience, understanding and acceptance.
  • A LOT of many things most people lack.

They only lack them because they haven’t practiced these skills, abilities and “values”.

The more courageous you are, the more courageous you become.

20 Ideas To Help Students Get Organized 3 of 3

Maria Gracia Web Photo

Maria Gracia

Today’s blog post is the third of a series of three, provided by the “Queen Of Organizing”, Maria Gracia.

You can click on the hyperlinks to access the first 7 organization tips for students and for the next 8 decluttering tips for students.

I am a big fan of this concept that I call Voluntary Simplexity, it’s key element of my Personal Productivity Principles I teach students and business people. So let’s get to Maria’s suggestions…
Now is the perfect time for you to start off on the right foot and get organized. Here are the remaining tips to help you manage your time, avoid clutter, set goals and stay on an organized path to success.

15. SCHEDULE CONSISTENT STUDY TIMES.
Set aside time every day for study, and make it consistent. For example, set your study time for each afternoon from 4:00pm to 6:00pm. Whatever you do, avoid last minute studying and cramming.

16. BREAK IT UP.
Break up big tasks, into smaller, bite-sized jobs. For instance, if you have to study three chapters in your history book, study one chapter at a time each day. If you have to work on a project, break it down into three or four stages.

17. EAT YOUR BROCCOLI FIRST.
Imagine eating your broccoli before your dessert. What would be left for you to look forward to? Just the same, do your homework for your most difficult subjects first. Then, everything else will be a breeze, and therefore, more enjoyable.

18. GET ASSISTANCE.
If you don’t understand a lesson, immediately ask for help. Don’t let it get to the point that you’re totally confused. A sibling, friend, parent or teacher can be a lifesaver.

19. DON’T GIVE UP.
If you find yourself getting off track, simply take a deep breath and get back on track. It is better to get slightly off the path, rather than giving up.

20. REWARD YOURSELF.
Designate enticing rewards for each goal you set, such as a night at the movies, or a quiet, relaxing walk in the park. As you achieve each of your goals, reap your rewards. This will keep you motivated throughout the year.

Want even more tips to help you get organized and on track? Watch expert organizer, Maria Gracia’s, 21-day Organizing Boot Camp today! Its FREE and it’s fun. Just click on the hyperlink.

20 Ideas To Help Students Get Organized 2 of 3

Maria Gracia Web Photo

Maria Gracia

Today’s blog post is the second of a series of three, provided by the “Queen Of Organizing”, Maria Gracia.For the first instalment that has the first seven ideas to help students get organized, click on the hyperlink.

I am a big fan of this concept that I call Voluntary Simplexity, it’s key element of my Personal Productivity Principles I teach students and business people. So let’s get to Maria’s suggestions…
Now is the perfect time for you to start off on the right foot and get organized. Here are a few tips to help you manage your time, avoid clutter, set goals and stay on an organized path to success.

8. EAT AN APPLE A DAY.
Eat three healthy meals each day, along with fruit for snacks. Don’t overload on sweets, which cause many people
to feel tired.

9. AVOID OVERLOAD.
While you may sign up for extra school activities, such as basketball or cheerleading, don’t take on too much. First
determine how much study time you need. Then, choose one or two recreational activities that you enjoy.

10. USE A STUDENT PLANNER.
Use a good student planner or organizer. The ones that have pocket folders, dividers and planning calendars are ideal.

11. USE ONE CALENDAR.
Use one calendar to plan all of your school and personal activities, rather than two or more. When you use more than
one, you run the risk of scheduling conflicts and missed appointments. This is very important. Heed the old proverb ‘A man who wears two watches, never knows the correct time.’

12. COLOR-CODE.
You may consider color-coding similar activities on your calendar. For example, highlight all upcoming tests in yellow, study time in green and recreational activities in pink.

13. WRITE IT DOWN.
When you learn of an upcoming test, event, or anything you must prepare for or attend, immediately jot it in your planner. Don’t wait for later, or you may forget about it.

14. BREAK UP YOUR STUDY TIME.
Determine how many study hours you need, and schedule study time in your planner. For example, if you need six hours of time to study for a test, you may break that time up into six sessions, of one hour each. Choose the six days and make a ‘study time’ notation in your calendar.

Want even more tips to help you get organized and on track? Watch expert organizer, Maria Gracia’s, 21-day Organizing Boot Camp today! Its FREE and it’s fun. Just click on the hyperlink.

 

20 Ideas To Help Students Get Organized 1 of 3

Maria Gracia Web Photo

Maria Gracia

Today’s blog post is the first of a series of three, provided by the “Queen Of Organizing”, Maria Gracia. I am a big fan of this concept that I call Voluntary Simplexity, it’s key element of my Personal Productivity Principles I teach students and business people. So let’s get to Maria’s suggestions…
Now is the perfect time for you to start off on the right foot and get organized. Here are a few tips to help you manage your time, avoid clutter, set goals and stay on an organized path to success.

  1. SET GOALS.
    Set realistic goals at the beginning of the school year and break those large goals into mini-goals. Write these goals down on index cards and keep them in a highly visible place where you can see them every day. Writing down your goals makes them more concrete, and motivates you to keep working towards them. Psst! You can do this even mid-semester!
  2. DON’T RUSH.
    Wake up early enough for school to arrive well ahead of time. If you need 30 minutes to get up, shower and dress, pad that time by waking up at least 45 minutes prior to your departure. To ensure you don’t turn off your alarm clock and go back to sleep, place your clock at the far end of your room. This way, you actually have to get out of bed to turn it off and you’re most likely to stay up.
  3. PREPARE YOUR WARDROBE.
    Before you go to bed each night, choose, iron and lay out your clothes for the next day. This way, you’ll be all set to dress and go in the morning.
  4. AVOID CLUTTER.
    At the beginning of the school year, you have no clutter. Be careful not to build clutter as the year progresses. Create separate folders for school announcements, tests that have been graded, papers you must give to your parents and so on. As papers become outdated, such as an event that has passed, toss them immediately.
  5. MAKE TO DO LISTS.
    Always spend a minimum of 15 minutes per day, preparing your To Do list for tomorrow. In doing so, you will know exactly what tasks you have to accomplish the next day.
  6. USE AN EFFECTIVE STUDY AREA.
    Designate a quiet, well-lit area for studying. Don’t study in front of the television, or in an area of your home where you’re bound to be distracted. Hang a ‘Do Not Disturb’ sign on your door. If you can’t find a quiet spot at home, go to the library. In addition, you should study while sitting at a table or desk. Avoid studying in a very comfortable chair or a bed, which may cause you to feel drowsy.
  7. GET YOUR BEAUTY SLEEP.
    Get a good night’s rest. This will ensure you are alert and ready to learn the following day.

Want even more tips to help you get organized and on track? Watch expert organizer, Maria Gracia’s, 21-day Organizing Boot Camp today! Its FREE and it’s fun. Just click on the hyperlink.

 

Students: Don’t read this, you can’t handle it!

I say that only jokingly, but also seriously. Someone sent me an outstanding blog post that both parents and students should read – very carefully. I, for one, totally agree. I see it in today’s society at the level of business people. It is a sad consequence of trying to do the right thing and producing the opposite result. Kind of like Japan with it’s intense focus on cleanliness and hygiene that now produces the highest incidence of asthma in the world – without the necessary antibodies, the body cannot create its defenses accordingly.

This is one of the most honest, straight-to-the-heart-of-the-matter article I have seen in a long, long time. Please take 5 minutes to read it. Your and/or your child’s future depends on it. Click on the link to learn 3 mistakes we making leading kids.

 

Barak Obama tweets on the value of an education

Barak Obama Tweet on Cost Of Education

Students Save $100 On Apple Products!

Back To School, Apple Products, Student Savings, Mac Sale

Reading Cartoon

Speed Reading, Reading, Fast Reading, Reading Cartoon

Man’s best reading buddy

The public library in Sudbury, Ontario, has teamed up with a therapy dog group to give some kids a chance to read to a furry friend.

Monique Roy, the Greater Sudbury Public Library‘s children’s librarian, is a dog lover herself and has owned a therapy dog. She had been looking for a way to combine that part of her life with her passion for youth literacy. Thus began Reading Tails, a program to help kids aged 6 to 12 improve their reading skills by reading aloud to canine companions from Magical Paws Pet Therapy.

“Kids seem to react to the dogs a little bit better,” Roy told the CBC. “The dogs listen, they don’t comment, they don’t critique, and the kids feel like they’re gaining something. And also, they feel a connection with the dog — that they’re reading to the dog, they’re doing a service to the dog. So they just feel better.”

Margaret Julian has recently started bringing her seven-year-old smooth-haired Daschund named Liesl (named after the character in The Sound of Music) to the program. She believes reading to dogs relaxes children and is an enjoyable way to improve literacy.

“They can concentrate, and they can have fun at the same time. I have as much [fun] as they do, I think. I always have a laugh when I come here.”

David, a young boy who is taking part in Reading Tails, loves petting and cuddling with Liesl during reading sessions. A reporter asked him whether reading to a dog was different than reading to his mother.

“Yes, because mom doesn’t bark,” he said.

What makes a great teacher?

“The mediocre teacher tells.

The good teacher explains.

The superior teacher demonstrates.

The great teacher inspires”

– William A. Ward

Share with us an inspiring teacher story by placing a comment below.

Teenage Brains

Every once in a while, someone sends me something absolutely incredible that defies description.

Today’s blog post is about an article on teenage brains. It is so erudite and engaging I am not even going to attempt to summarise it. If you are a teenager or the parent of a teenager, I promise you it’s going to be a great 10 minute investment. Click on the hyperlink to access the original article.

The education system and kids

The educational system today has less and less influence on students than ever before. The infiltration of technology (Google) and communication modalities (Smartphones and Facebook) are destroying the traditional boundaries of school (discipline) and the ‘outside world’. When I was in school I studied and ‘focused’.

I am not advocating that all technological progress is bad, just that students are incapable of dealing with it (as are their parents) and until an optimal ‘balance’ is re-established, students will continue to sub-optimise their outcomes.

This is one of the most troubled generations and will unfortunately suffer the consequences for the remainder of their lifetimes – I know it’s a sad prognosis, but just as the war and great depression generations before them, they will take this to their graves.

Of course it’s not all bad – it’s just not as good as recent previous generations.

The good thing is that once this ‘passes’ and it will – things will get better, a lot better. Just not soon enough for ‘this generation’.

A more ‘visual’ analogy is the increase in obesity – those effects are (permanent) lifelong for this generational cohort – even though a small few within the group can become healthy and fit – most won’t.

Governments have the group/cohort/generation to deal with – not single individuals. That’s why their problems are so complicated and in the case of obesity, expensive (healthcare).

The great news is that there is ALWAYS HOPE for that special child who has the nurturing environment to ‘buck the trend’ and learns the skills to achieve – in spite of the odds.

I help try to help counteract these forces as much as I can with my student accelerated learning and speed reading programs – teaching a holistic approach that is founded on traditional foundational “how to study” principles that work for students of all ages.

Kids and brain science

LAST month, two kindergarten classes at the Blue School were hard at work doing what many kindergartners do: drawing. One group pursued a variation on the self-portrait. “That’s me thinking about my brain,” one 5-year-old-girl said of her picture. Down the hall, children with oil pastels in hand were illustrating their emotions, mapping where they started and where they ended. For one girl, sadness ended at home with a yummy drink and her teddy bear.

Grappling so directly with thoughts and emotions may seem odd for such young brains, but it is part of the DNA of the Blue School, a downtown Manhattan private school that began six years ago as a play group. From the beginning, the founders wanted to incorporate scientific research about childhood development into the classroom. Having rapidly grown to more than 200 students in preschool through third grade, the school has become a kind of national laboratory for integrating cognitive neuroscience and cutting-edge educational theory into curriculum, professional development and school design.

“Schools were not applying this new neurological science out there to how we teach children,” said Lindsey Russo, whose unusual title, director of curriculum documentation and research, hints at how seriously the Blue School takes this mission. “Our aim is to take those research tools and adapt them to what we do in the school.”

So young children at the Blue School learn about what has been called “the amygdala hijack” — what happens to their brains when they flip out. Teachers try to get children into a “toward state,” in which they are open to new ideas. Periods of reflection are built into the day for students and teachers alike, because reflection helps executive functionthe ability to process information in an orderly way, focus on tasks and exhibit self-control. Last year, the curriculum guide was amended to include the term “meta-cognition”: the ability to think about thinking.

“Having language for these mental experiences gives children more chances to regulate their emotions,” said David Rock, who is a member of the Blue School’s board and a founder of NeuroLeadership Institute, a global research group dedicated to understanding the brain science of leadership.

That language is then filtered through a 6-year-old’s brain. Continue reading ‘Kids and brain science’

Homeless to Harvard

If you think you’ve got problems – think again. Watch this video and see how perseverance and commitment pay off – for someone who really wants it. It’s not enough to “want it” – you need to be willing to do whatever it takes – sometimes literally!

Mark Wahlberg goes back to high school

Marky Mark, Mark Wahlberg Back To SchoolI stumbled across an article that said Mark Wahlberg is going to get his high school diploma.  What does it tell you when a multi-millionaire actor wants a high school diploma?

It means there is value in getting one. This is a man who’s seen more of the world than most and experienced things to fill 3 or 4 lifetimes yet he still feels a little intimidated by the process.

What does that tell you?

Education is worth something. It’s not just self-esteem issue. The stats are staggering, but let’s face it, most high school dropouts don’t care about the stats, but they might care about a RICH, SUCCESSFUL ACTOR going back to school.

So there you have it – ONE MORE REASON TO STAY IN SCHOOL!

How To Learn – Help For Kinesthetics

If you are struggling to learn a new subject, it might be because of your learning style. I cover this in detail in my study guide in detail, but one of our readers offers this great inspirational story that might help you.

Hi Marc,


I was helping Fred with his upcoming “electricity” exam last evening.

Fred is kinesthetic.. He loves stories- people’s experiences and all things sports.

He excels at and enjoys history, social studies as he lives the experiences of people from hundreds of years ago.

As you can guess… Fred was less than enthusiastic about electricity et al…

I helped him by making up a story about how RESISTANCE is just a bunch of tough guys in an electrical circuit, conductance is like a conductor of a bus bringing the volts to their “potential” and making a difference… and because it can be a long bus ride.. it’s important to keep the “INTENSITY” of the current high… etc…

He had already memorized the formulas and done the leg work.

He just needed to add meaning- a story – to what electricity is about.

It was pretty cool to see his physiology change right before my eyes. Ironically, with every new idea. I could see eyes LIGHT-UP – sorry couldn’t resist :)

He was excited, passionate and spent the next half hour telling me all about his plans for finishing this school year and what he will do differently next year !

Anyway, all this reminded me of an episode of WKRP, which I showed Fred, and thought you could use on your blog…

Have a Great Day !
Andrew


Marina Keegan Yale Student Essay

Yale grad’s final essay gets new life after her unexpected death

Marina Keegan, Yale Student, Yale Essay

Marina Keegan Yale Student/Writer

This undated photo released by the Keegan family shows Marina, a 22-year-old Yale graduate, who penned her life’s lessons in a final column for the Yale Daily News. She died just days after commencement.

But the words of her work, “The Opposite of Loneliness,” have lived on.

The Massachusetts resident died in a car crash on her way to a vacation house on Cape Cod when the driver, Michael Gocksch, lost control of the car. Gocksch survived, but Keegan was pronounced dead on the scene.

The young writer was already making a name for herself in the literary world. She had published stories in the New York Times and had a job with the New Yorker she was about to start.

Her legacy is priceless and timeless and I share it with you here because all students have bouts of self-doubt, loneliness and apprehension about what student life is all about.

Take solace is Marina’s words of wisdom, they are her legacy and gift to you.