Study Skills & Test-Taking

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Study skills

Learn How to Learn

Organization & Planning
Develop Proper Study Habits
Note-Taking & Outlining Techniques
Prepare for State Exams
Overcoming Test-Taking Anxiety

Standardized tests play a major role in today's schooling.  Your child will likely take such standardized tests every year.  The results of these tests have significant impact on your child's educational experience.  These results not only determine if your child is eligible to receive remedial instruction in school; but failure can sometimes prevent grade promotion.

No matter how you feel about these controversial assessment tools, testing is now unavoidable.

Your child must face up to these challenges.

One-to-One Home Tutoring provides Standardized Test Preparation, following evaluation of your child's specific academic strengths and weaknesses; it makes little sense to drill skills that your child has already mastered.

In addition to providing your child with guided practice in targeted skills, the student will also be taught test-taking strategies that optimize performance and decrease anxiety.  Children feel reassured when they are taught ways to make educated guesses to questions they find totally baffling.  This is especially useful for students whose performance on tests is affected by fearful thoughts and nervous symptoms.  Knowing these strategies helps direct your child's attention away from self and onto the test questions.

Study Skills: Learning How to Learn

Students in school are given daily homework assignments, expected to take notes in class, know how to memorize information and use study guides effectively to prepare for tests.  Those who fail to accomplish one or more of these tasks may be referred to as lazy or criticized for not having “good study skills”.  Yet, most children are never explicitly taught these skills.  Teachers expect parents to teach study skills at home; parents unknowingly believe these skills are taught in the classroom.  The child is stuck between the two frustrated parties and may not clearly understand what he or she is doing wrong.

One-to-One Home Tutoring focuses on three important aspects of effective studying

  • Organization
  • Study Strategies
  • Motivation


Organization can make a big difference in a student’s performance.

When a child is constantly missing homework assignments, failing to study for tests, or waiting until the last minute to complete projects, there is a good chance that an organizational overhaul is needed.  The benefit of having a one-on-one tutor comes from regular, structured time with an adult who helps lay out a plan to get things done. Eventually, the child assimilates these habits of good planning and organization and begins to apply them independently.

Study Strategies

Many children do not know how to study.

A variety of approaches to comprehending and retaining information must be taught.  What many study skills programs fail to recognize is that different students master material in different ways.  The tutor and child need to work together to explore different avenues of learning to determine how your child learns best.  Some students find that writing information down helps improve their ability to recall material; others prefer to read and re-read the material while highlighting important points.  Auditory learners may find recording their teacher or listening to their own voice reading from the text is an effective strategy for learning.


Motivation is an important issue in studying.

Many students view test preparation as “extra” work and do not see it as a necessary requirement.  When a student dislikes a particular subject or finds it boring, studying may be the last thing they want to do.

This is the classic problem of lack of motivation leading to a lack of understanding, then failure.   One-on-one attention is the most effective way to motivate such children.  When a positive bond develops between tutor and student, the relationship is similar to the rapport between a good coach and athlete.  A good tutor encourages, explains, organizes, prods, and oversees academic performance; plus helps her student regain confidence in their abilities.