Tips from a Private Irvine Tutor: Getting Ahead in School Over Thanksgiving Break!


Fall break is coming up, whether you or your student is in elementary, middle, high school, or college.  Breaks usually range from just an extra day off up to a week of vacation time.  Coming around a month before the end of the semester, this break is an ideal time to make sure your grades and progress are exactly where you want them to be.  If they aren’t, then use this time to bring them up.  If they are, then you can still use this time to remain proactive and stay ahead of your classes – end the semester strong with the help of a private Irvine academic tutor.

Let’s start with if your grades need improvement.  Maybe you started out strong but lost focus at some point, maybe you’ve been struggling from the beginning of the year, or maybe you feel like you understand the material but your grades don’t reflect that.  These can all be remedied over the break if you are simply willing to make the effort.  If you do have a grade that you are proud of, but are worried about the future, you can still benefit from work over the break.  Maybe you have an A in your class but are worried about the final, maybe you have good grades so far but don’t understand what you’re learning, or maybe there is an AP test in your future that you want to do well on.  Regardless of your situation, here are the methods you should try:

1. Talk with (or email) your teacher before the break. Your teacher knows your grade and the factors that led to it.  Your teacher is also the number one expert on their class and how to get an A.  Before you leave for break, visit your teacher or send a message that includes these talking points: what your grade is now and where you would like it to be, what factors specifically are bringing your grade down (tests, homework, participation, etc.), any possible extra credit opportunities, and what they recommend studying or working on over the break.  If you have a helpful teacher, their knowledge can help guide your fall break to get you on track for a better grade.

2. Get ahead! Do you have a project due in a few weeks?  What about a test that isn’t until after break?  A final that you know is looming in the distance?  Work on them over your break.  Even if it just means typing a few sentences for your final paper, saving a mostly empty PowerPoint for your project, or only making a dozen flash cards to study for your final.  Do a little bit each day and you’ll be shocked at the stress it relieves knowing that you have already begun this work.  It also gives you the opportunity to find thing that you don’t understand or don’t know how to do so you have plenty of time to ask for help.

3. Find a professional to help diagnose your current situation in your class and help you improve it and get ahead. An experienced tutor can help you find where you should be focusing in your class and help teach you to target any problem areas.  If you are struggling with the fundamentals from September, they can take the free time during the break to help you relearn and master these concepts.  If you’re mostly caught up, they can predict what you might be covering next so that you can learn it early and be confident when you go back to class.  If you need help studying, writing, or just comprehending what is going on in your class, a one-on-one tutor can devote individual time to you to help fix the problem while you still have free time during the break.

Seeking help from the teacher is always a primary tool at your disposal.  However, we all know that this method simply is not effective with many teachers.  They might not have the time to help you individually, you might not find their help beneficial, or they might not be willing to help you.  Whether or not the teacher is able to assist, the key to having success in your class is doing the work, getting ahead, and seeking outside help if you need it.  If you’ve been feeling overwhelmed or overworked because of classes, take this opportunity during the break to prevent those feelings from happening again.

Don’t wait to book your in-home Irvine tutor for finals! Call TutorNerds today.

Michael C. is currently a private math, science, and standardized test tutor with TutorNerds in Irvine and Anaheim.

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