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Thursday, August 25, 2016

What Do You Think About The No Homework Debate?

So it appears that a 2nd grade teacher has decided not to give her students any homework and there has been much debate about this. Even though my daughter is now an adult with school-aged children of her own, I do believe in homework, When I was young it wasn't questionable, we had homework. Now before you begin to scream "BUT YOU DIDN'T HAVE THIS MUCH HOMEWORK" you're right, we didn't have hours of homework. On the otherhand, we weren't involved in activities everyday that took up all of our after-school time either.  I do understand the debate, I get it, I get it! I hear complaints, all the time, about too much homework from the parents of the students I tutor,  But could it be possible that there is such a thing as a balanced load of homework and life outside of school?

I submit to you that giving the proper amount of homework is the answer rather than not giving any homework at all. Our 1st, 2nd and 3rd graders are expected to know a lot of information. It's virtually impossible to dedicate the correct amount of time to learning about Math, Reading, Spelling, Parts of Sentences, Science, Social Studies and reinforce this all within a school day. There has to be some sort of reinforcement. This my friends is what homework is designed to do, reinforce what they were supposed to have learned in school that day. AND in some cases alert you to the fact that little Johnny didn't understand what he was supposed have learned that day or little Susie only understood part of it, No offense to those of you who have children named Johnny or Susie.

1st, 2nd and 3rd grade are where the foundations of Math, Reading, and Writing are formed. Let's not short change our students by going from one extreme to the other. Sure you don't like homework as a Parent, it cuts into your time too, but the hard fact is we are responsible for ensuring that a good foundation is being laid for our children to become productive citizens.

That's my two cents, "no homework" is too extreme. Let me know your opinion. Comment on http://bit.ly/no-homework-debate     

Denise Smith is the owner of TutorByDenise
To learn more about her visit www.tutorbydenise.com
Follow her on FACEBOOK #toomuchhomeworkATL, #nohomeworkATL
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Tuesday, June 3, 2014

How Can You Succeed

Just read an article about a teenaged boy whose mom died and even though he became homeless he graduated from high school as valedictorian with a 4.65 average. He was able to overcome adversity and still push on, he DID IT! Why is it that some kids, heck even some adults, overcome adversity rising above their situation and circumstances defeating the odds of success? Are they born with tenacity or the will to overcome? Do they happen to be at the right place at the right time? What is it? Some students try so hard to learn without receivng any encouragement from parents or teachers. Some teachers try so hard to teach students without getting any support from parents or students. Yet despite circumstances some great teachers still teach and some disadvantaged students still succeed. The common thread I hear over and over is NEVER GIVE UP! You see the strange thing about the mind is, if it thinks it can do something, it will tell you to continue to try until you do it. Some call it the "power of positive thinking" others call it "success the greatest revenge" and still others say "it's your inner spirit speaking to you". But whatever you call it, it allows you to keep pushing beyond your situation and circumstance. And each one of us gets a chance to help awaken that desire, that mindset for someone or maybe for ourselves. It's something that we read, that we see or hear. It's something that we're told or taught. That something can be you. Have you encouraged someone today?

NEVER GIVE UP, YOU CAN DO IT! Read http://tiny.cc/you-can-do-it

I'm P.Denise Smith and that's my two cents.

To learn more about P.Denise Smith visit www.tutorbydenise.com or follow her on: Twitter @tutorbydenise Facebook - www.facebook.com/tutorbydenise
Join her every Friday  LIVE Talk Radio Show "Talking With Denise" http://tiny.cc/live-talk-radio

Thursday, April 24, 2014

CRCT Testing - Should You Refuse To Let Your Child Be Tested #crcttesting2014

Georgia students have finished taking the CRCT, parents and their kids are glad it's over. Every year teachers, parents and kids scramble to ensure everyone is ready for testing. The debate of standardized testing has gone on for years but this year is slightly different. This year a Marietta couple refused to let their 3rd and 5th grader take the CRCT see http://tiny.cc/crct-testing. A lot of parents and students mumble and grumble about the fact that 3rd, 5th, and 8th graders have to pass the Georgia CRCT to be promoted to the next grade. But few parents, if any, have refused to let their child (dren) be tested. I'm not even sure if anyone thought they had an option.

The million dollar question is, why can't the tests taken during the school year determine if a student can be promoted to the next grade? Many feel all the work done and good grades given during the year has no merit if the CRCT is the only measurement used for promotion of 3rd, 5th, and 8th graders. And now with all the news coverage of the Marietta couple refusing to let their children be tested and the school's response to such a request, one may wonder if the state of Georgia is going to review this mandate.  

We could argue the advantages or disadvantages of CRCT testing but where would that get us? Yes we do need to ensure that our children know how to read and understand concepts, know how to add, subtract, multiply,divide and understand the process of math. Yes it is critical that our Elementary students be properly prepared for Middle School and our Middle School students be properly prepared for High School, I don't think anyone would argue that fact. However there has to be a way to measure, to ensure that students are capable of performing at the next level without everything "riding" on one test. There has to be a better way to reward schools, principals, and teachers whose students perform well. There has to be a better way to link low performance accountibility.

The main goal of the school system is to educate our children. To help them possess enough knowledge to become productive citizens. Let's find a way to do that.Let's not have a repeat of teachers, principals and other school authorities cheating on the CRCT in order to retain their jobs. Let's not promote test anxiety by having everything "ride" on one test. Let's find a way to hold the students as well as the teachers and principals accountable for performance through out the entire year. It may be that students receive tests that are weighted greater than others, I'm not sure. But let's start the dialogue NOW.           

I'm Denise Smith and that's my two cents.


To learn more about P.Denise Smith visit
www.tutorbydenise.com
twitter.com/tutorbydenise #crcttesting2014
www.blogtalkradio.com/thetutorwizard 




CRCT Testing - Should You Refuse To Let Your Child Be Tested #crcttesting2014

Georgia students have finished taking the CRCT, parents and their kids are glad it's over. Every year teachers, parents and kids scramble to ensure everyone is ready for testing. The debate of standardized testing has gone on for years but this year is slightly different. This year a Marietta couple refused to let their 3rd and 5th grader take the CRCT see http://tiny.cc/crct-testing. A lot of parents and students mumble and grumble about the fact that 3rd, 5th, and 8th graders have to pass the Georgia CRCT to be promoted to the next grade. But few parents, if any, have refused to let their child (dren) be tested. I'm not even sure if anyone thought they had an option.

Should you refuse to let your child take the CRCT? The million dollar question is, why can't the tests taken during the school year determine if a student can be promoted to the next grade? Many feel all the work done and good grades given during the year has no merit if the CRCT is the only measurement used for promotion of 3rd, 5th, and 8th graders. And now with all the news coverage of the Marietta couple refusing to let their children be tested and the school's response to such a request, one may wonder if the state of Georgia is going to review this mandate.  

Yes we do need to ensure that our children know how to read and understand concepts, know how to add, subtract, multiply,divide and understand the process of math. Yes it is critical that our Elementary students be properly prepared for Middle School and our Middle School students be properly prepared for High School, I don't think anyone would argue that fact. However there has to be a way to measure, to ensure that students are capable of performing at the next level without everything "riding" on one test. There has to be a better way to reward schools, principals, and teachers whose students perform well. There has to be a better way to link low performance accountibility.

The main goal of the school system is to educate our children, to help them possess enough knowledge to become productive citizens. Let's find a way to do that. Let's not have a repeat of teachers, principals and other school authorities cheating on the CRCT in order to retain their jobs. Let's not promote test anxiety by having everything "ride" on one test. Let's find a way to hold the students as well as the teachers and principals accountable for performance through out the entire year. It may be that students receive tests that are weighted greater than others, I'm not sure. But let's start the dialogue NOW.           

I'm Denise Smith and that's my two cents. What's yours?

P.Denise Smith is a Tutor for grades k-12 and 1st year college students
You can learn more about P.Denise Smith at
www.tutorbydenise.com 
twitter.com/tutorbydenise
www.blogtalkradio.com/thetutorwizard 




Sunday, December 15, 2013

What Would Happen If We Held Christmas Traditions Throughtout The Year

What would happen if we did Christmas traditions throughtout the entire year? I know, I know. You're saying "What are you talking about? Christmas only come once a year. Are you saying give gifts, the entire year?" I'm not talking about gift giving, I'm talking about doing things you traditionally only do during Christmas. What would happen if we spread cheer, joy, and goodwill to all, throughout the entire year?

What would happen if we gave toys, clothing, and food (continually gave) throughout the entire year to those less fortunate than us (they do need food and clothing for more than one day)? What would happen if we visited Nursing Homes and  hospitals, singing and spreading joy for one day every month, throughout the entire year? What would happen if we sat down with our children and watched a favorite movie, two or three nights, every month, for an entire year?  What would happen if we baked cookies and sang songs with our families one night a month for the entire year? What would happen if we jumped in our cars with our family and friends driving through neighborhoods sipping hot chocolate?  Hmmm . On second thought we might not be able to do that one year 'round. Someone might call the police. lol. But you get my drift.

I'm not saying that the world would be a kinder and gentlier nation nor would we be sitting around holding hands singing kumbaya. But I am saying it's a start. A start for us to begin caring about someone besides ourselves and our families. A start for families to begin genuinely feeling "together".

As one of the famous Jackson 5 songs says:
 Taking time to be kind to one and all
It's that time of year
When good friends are dear
And you wish you could give more
Than just presents from a store
Why don't you give love on Christmas day
Oh, even the man who has everything
Would be so happy if you would bring
Him love on Christmas day
No greater gift is there than love

People you don't know
Smile and nod hello
Everywhere there's an air of Christmas joy
It's that once a year
When the world's sincere

Give love on Christmas day.
No greater gift is there than love
What the world needs is love
Yes, the world needs your love.

What would happen if we held Christmas traditions throughout the entire year? I think, more love.

That's my two cents let me know yours. 

To learn more about P.Denise Smith go to:
www.tutorbydenise.com
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-Call in every Friday at 6:30pm and give your opinion on "Talking with Denise" Live-talk-radio 
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Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Live Homework Math Help Atlanta

I talk to many different parents and I hear the same thing. My child brings math homework home and I can't help them with it. Many parents say " This math seems different than when I was in school". Although some kids take notes during class many don't understand the notes they took. After finally arriving home from school and settling in to do their homework they often find they need help; their notes just don't make sense.
Since we live in the 21st century where most parents work, mom or dad is not home to help or even if they were home may not be able to help. Good news folks, since we do live in the 21st century (lol), we have amazing technology available right at our finger tips.  Access to live homework help is available for your son or daughter even when you are not home.
Having access to a live math tutor online is like having a personalized tutoring program with your very own private tutor to help you right there in the comfort of your living room. I know some parents aren't so sure if this will work for their child, but think about it. Our children talk on their cell phones, use their laptops or tablets for almost everything (sometimes even homework). After all they are 21st century children and technology for them, is just like you and I sitting down with an old friend. Technology, in some form or fashion, has weaved itselves into our everday living. Many international countries are out performing our kids in math. Do you think they would use technology to help their child with math? Math help is available right here, right now. for your child whether you live in Atlanta or not.    

I am Denise Smith and that's my 2 cents.


To learn more about P.Denise Smith:
Check this out live-homework-math-help
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Join her every Friday at 6:30pm -7:00pm ET on Live Talk Radio Call in 347-215-8532 or login to http://tiny.cc/live-talk-radio. 
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Sunday, October 27, 2013

COMMUNICATING BETTER: IS IT AS SIMPLE AS SITTING DOWN TO DINNER

Well It's Sunday and most people like to sit down to a good home cooked meal on Sunday or at least go to a restaurant that has some good home cooking.Well I decided to have a  good home cooked meal the "new fangled way", I brought stouffer's frozen family size mac-n- cheese, stoufer's frozen family size meatloaf and added my own veggies. Lo and behold when I opened up the Stouffer's box the top had writing on it, so I read it. AND guess what it said? It said "kids who have family dinners may get better grades". hummm And it also said "teens who eat family dinners confide in their parents".

With all the technology we have today to help us communicate, have we forgotten about one of the simpliest of all? A good old fashion sit down dinner. Apparently Stouffer's recognizes this. I think that's one of the reasons we like Thanksgiving so much. We get to sit down with family and friends, have good food and good conversation. You know your grandma or your aunt or maybe your uncle is going to question the young teenaged boy/girl about their date (or friend that brought to dinner). You know sooner or later there's going to be a conversation about who did what, when they were growing up. The dinner table is where we often connect with one another. When we sit down and eat together we tend to talk to each other, about our lives. OR at least that was the ole' school way of doing things. Now on Sundays we eat but not together. One child may be in his/her room eating, mom may be talking on her cell phone while eating and dad may be in the family room watching TV while eating.  I know I may sound a little old fashioned but I really think there was merit to sitting down eating together and actually talking to one another.

Not everything in the good ole' days was good but I think this one thing is. Like Stouffer's says " Let's Fix Dinner". Let's take the time to sit down, talk with one another over a good meal. I think it makes a difference or at least it's a start.

That's my two cents.

To learn more about P.Denise Smith go to:
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