College Ready

Sharing strategies for student success, college readiness and academic coaching


Leave a comment

Get Involved. Help Others. Have Fun. Summer Community Service for Teens

Coaches Corner:

Ahhh, Summer. To students, it means freedom and fun and lazy days with friends. With so much free time, this could also mean the perfect opportunity for your teen to try out volunteering at a local non-profit.

Often, teens need community service  for a high school requirement. Others want to volunteer as part of their preparations for applying to colleges and universities. But that isn’t what summertime is all about. Summer is about the unknown, trying new things, and finding new paths. That’s why trying on a new role as a volunteer is the perfect way to help others and have some fun in the sun! Endless opportunities exist for teens to get their feet wet and find an authentic way to get involved. Some teens will love the fast pace of organizing a soccer match at a youth camp, while others will love the serenity of restoring a park trail.

One simple suggestion–I am a big fan of libraries, and summer reading programs. These programs often use kids as young as 13 as volunteers to sign up participants, and help run events. It gives your child a chance to start small. Typically, a teen volunteers for a one-two hour shift just once a week. These programs couldn’t run without the help of the teens who show up each summer.

Check out what is going on locally this summer in your area and you just might find you have a teen that wants to get involved. A quick and easy web search will help you find an organization in need. One great resource is VolunteerMatch.org. They’ve connected over 7.9 million volunteers with opportunities to help in their communities.

Community service isn’t just a buzz word for a college application. It’s about all the good we do, and the good we feel, when we help others in need.

Whether you like the great outdoors, or prefer the great American novel, there’s an Opp for That! An opportunity to volunteer, that is. Here are more organizations that are in need of teens to volunteer in their programs:

United Way Be a reading mentor to a child who needs a little extra support

National Parks Help maintain and preserve the great outdoors

Volunteer.gov America’s Natural and Cultural Resources Volunteer Portal

Major League Baseball Action Teams: Goups of high school students who plan volunteer events. They receive support from Major League baseball players & inspire others to volunteer.

Advertisements


Leave a comment

24 Quotes for Living a Happy Life, from Dr. Seuss

Let’s face it–all the best quotes come from Dr. Seuss! I think I could comfortably say that everything I ever needed to learn, I learned from him. Kindness. Respect for the Earth. Tolerance for people who are different than yourself. Treating the smallest among us as equals. Loving yourself.

I thought I’d share this collection of inspirational quotes now, since it is commencement time and young people are graduating, from Kindergarten to college. You can’t beat the timeless advice of good ole’ Dr. Seuss. There’s something here for EVERYONE. He’s the original guru!

All the best quotes come from Dr Seuss--he's a guru.

My favorite little tidbit…the one I hold near and dear to my heart? “A person’s a person…no matter how small.” What about you? Do you have a favorite quote from Dr. Seuss? Let us know in the comments.

You can order this print via Momo Prints on Etsy. 


Leave a comment

27 Ways to Be an Effective Classroom Teacher in one Education Infographic

Try something new during these last few weeks of the school year. It can be like a dress rehearsal to see if you want to blend it into your “teacherly bag ‘o tricks” for next year. I like this education infographic from the amazing Mia Mac Meeken.

Image

 

 


1 Comment

How to Help First-Generation College Students Succeed

This article from the Greater Good Science Center discusses the impact of academic mentoring, engagement and community building on first-generation college students. Research now shows that it’s the social emotional aspects of college life that can be challenging for these students, who don’t have a model of academic success to draw on once they are away at school.

How to Help First-Generation College Students Succeed.

 

image from greatergood.berkeley.edu/


Leave a comment

Why Happy Teachers Matter

This week, I’m posting some favorite quotes and images in honor of all the amazing educators out there who teach, inspire, mentor and encourage our nation’s youth to keep moving forward. Happy teachers are a positive force for change. One kind word can impact the entire direction of a student’s life, and one lesson can light the spark that produces a lifelong learner.

Remember to #ThankATeacher this week!

Image

Image via CommonSense Media.


3 Comments

How to be a Scholar. 6 Steps to Encourage Critical Thinking

As we get to the end of the semester and school year, we are expecting our students to demonstrate higher order thinking skills, or Critical Thinking. I like this infographic from Learning Commons at the University of British Columbia.

Critical Thinking Toolkit

Thanks to its simple flow chart style, students can use it to clearly reflect on their own thinking. Students need to constantly question their own process, and those of others. They need to ask questions about the text they read, test possibilities, and allow for new discoveries.

Higher order thinking skills (HOTS) push our students beyond simple responses and elevate them to scholars and critics in their own right. Part of what’s vital in education is for students to learn to trust their own voice, while still questioning their thinking. What strategies do you use in your classroom to encourage critical thinking?

 

Creativity and Connection in the Classroom

1 Comment

85% of college-educated professionals say creative thinking is critical for problem solving in their career.

Here’s what else they had to say on why creativity is such an important factor in our classrooms, in our careers, and in our everyday lives, as well:

Creativity and Connection in the Classroom

The study interviewed 1000 college-educated professionals who were employed full-time, 25+ years of age. See source “Creativity and Education: Why it Matters,” by Adobe.