Tag Archives: Tutor

Irvine Tutoring: Four Things Students Should do Post Winter Break

Four Things Students Should Do After Winter Break


The holidays are over, it’s a New Year, and students are ready to go back to school. Okay, maybe you’re not prepared to go back, but you have to regardless of how you feel. With a New Year comes new aspirations, goals, and resolutions. Whether you’re doing well and want to keep it up, or you think there’s room for improvement in the second half of the school year, these tips will help you get on track – book your private Orange County tutor today.

Just like the first half of the year, winter and spring will fly by, so get ahead by taking actions now that will benefit you when finals come around. Like a car driving in the snow, back to school in January can start slow then get out of control in an instance. Do yourself a favor and get ahead before homework and tests start picking up in pace. Below are four tips from our private Irvine tutors to help you make 2019 your most successful year yet.

1. Take Stock of Where You Are at

While most of us want to leave 2018 in the past, students will benefit from a review of the previous semester. Check your grades, test scores, homework, and written assignments from the Fall semester. Do you feel like you are behind, doing well, or somewhere in between? What did you struggle with the most and at what did you most excel? By answering these questions, you can look ahead to your 2019 schedule and help plan around your assessment. For example, if you struggled with writing essays, but breezed through your book assignments, plan your study/homework time accordingly. Start the assignments you struggle with the earliest. That way you have time to seek help if you need some, which brings us to our next suggestion.

2. Book a Private Orange County Tutor

Once you’ve reviewed the first half of the school year, it’s time to get help where you need it most. Whether you book a private Orange County in-person tutor from TutorNerds or an online tutor from TutorNerd, it’s always best to sign up early. The longer you wait to start tutoring, the farther behind you fall in your classes. Keep in mind that even if you are doing well in school, you can still benefit from the help of a private OC tutor.

3. Talk to Your Teachers

If you have the opportunity, book some time to talk to your teachers during office hours or before or after class. Ask them how they think you are performing and if they have any suggestions on how you can improve. Your teachers would much rather steer you in the right direction early on than have you begging for extra credit after you bomb your test (READ: Irvine Tutoring Tips: How to Overcome a Bad Teacher).

4. Set up a Schedule with a Study Buddy or Group

A new semester means a fresh start. Avoid falling behind with a designated study routine. While you’ll always have to do some studying on your own, keep it interesting with one-on-one sessions with a study buddy or a weekly group study session. By studying in a group, you’ll be able to get help in areas other students thrive in as well as help them out with their work. Having a designated study session will help with procrastination as well as remind you of important upcoming assignment dates.

Here are TutorNerds, we are happy to help you make 2019 the year of academic success. Call us today to book your private Orange County tutor.

tutor logo Ask A Nerd! SAT Subject Tests All blog entries, with the exception of guest bloggers, are written by Tutor Nerds. Are you an education professional? If so, email us at pr@tutornerds.com for guest blogging and collaborations. We want to make this the best free education resource in SoCal, so feel free to suggest what you would like to see us write.

Teacher Appreciation Week (May 5-9) | TutorNerds

Teachers: America’s Most Undervalued Resource

“A teacher who loves learning earns the right and the ability to help others learn.” – Ruth Beechick

Take a moment this week to stop and ask yourself, “where would I be without the amazing teachers in my life?” Can you answer it? Probably not.


It seems almost silly to label one week of the year “teacher appreciation week” when they continue to inspire year round. From the grade school teacher who wouldn’t let you give up on math, to the private tutor who helped you get a higher score on the ACT than all your friends, educators are a big part of your life.

Here at TutorNerds, we see first hand what an amazing job Orange County teachers do. Many of the students who come to us for help aren’t doing so because their teachers did a poor job, they just need a little extra help. Further, we understand that students learn at different paces, which is hard to accommodate for when course material must meet a tight schedule. In fact, most teachers will go out of their way to suggest a private tutor when they notice a student is falling behind.

The Pride of Orange County, CA

Orange County students achieve great things. Just recently, Kevin Lee, a student at University High School in Irvine, won the top science fair prize with his entry, “Strongly Coupling the Electrical and Mechanical Dynamics of the Heartbeat in a Diffuse Interface Model.” Kevin was awarded $1,000 and the distinction, State Science Fair Student of the Year.  There’s no denying Kevin Lee is one smart kid, but these events are also a reflection of California’s superb educators. For example, Rialto High School was well represented by Guadalupe Valero, who won the top choice for California State Science Fair Teacher of the Year.


The success of our students is a result of educators who inspire. We at TutorNerds know this because our college educated private tutors have all had many excellent teachers along the way. That being said, how can we show our gratitude? The best teachers are simply content to see their students succeed, but they deserve something special this week. Below are 5 Simple Ideas to Celebrate Teacher Appreciation Week from Karen Bantuveris of cozi.com.

“1. Start Simple– A Teacher’s Gift from You” – Sometimes a hand-written note is the most sincere thank you.

“2. Involve your Kids” –  Include a drawing or note from your kid in with your own letter.

“3. Involve the Classroom” – Collaborate with the entire class on a week long pampering session.

“4. Involve your School” – Coordinate a pot luck breakfast for the teachers at your school.

“5. Extra Love” – Make sure every teacher feels appreciated by giving a small gift to every educator at the school.

Now that you have some tips, go out there and appreciate some teachers. One more thing, Happy Cinco De Mayo, Orange County!

tutor logo ACT Tips From a Private Irvine Tutor | TutorNerds | tutornerds.com All blog entries are written by Tutor Nerds. For educational guest-blogging, please email us at info@tutornerds.com

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7 Tips to Maximize Your Tutoring Sessions | TutorNerds

Tutoring Sessions: Maximize Your Success

As tutors, we do our best to maximize our client’s session. We come with our guides, supplies, and minds prepared. Many times we have only an hour or so with each student, and that hour goes by fast. If our students aren’t ready or prepared, much of that precious time is wasted. Make the most of the time you have with your tutor by following the suggestions discussed below. You’ll get more out of your session, both financially and academically.


1. Get help early

If you start falling behind, find some support. In classes like math that build upon previous skills, waiting too long to ask for help can be detrimental to your grade. A tutor is the perfect person to review with weekly to ensure you’re staying up to speed

2. Be ready to learn

Every session is different, but the following list includes most of what you’ll need during a session: textbook, syllabus, specific assignment and instructions, relevant notes, quizzes and tests already graded. It may seem like a lot, but remember tutors have to understand what you’re working on and where you’re stuck before we can help you.

Stack of colorful books (cut-out, white background)3. Ask questions

We’re there to answer any questions you have, even the ones you think are silly or obvious. We feel good when you understand the material, so get rid of your stress and ask away; we’ll work with you as long as it takes.

4. Know what’s expected of you

Even though we don’t mind answering your questions, many simple ones can be answered by reading the syllabus, checking assignment instructions or speaking with a teacher. Make sure you look over all required readings and instructions before a tutor arrives. If you’re still stuck, a tutor can help, but a teacher is sometimes the best resource for specific questions.

As you can see, tutors don’t ask a whole lot. Following those four simple tips can make your next session easier and more enjoyable for all involved. However, knowing what you shouldn’t ask of a tutor is important too. Some call tutors superheroes, but there are a few things even the best tutors won’t tackle.

5. Your excuses are futile

We were all students before, so we’ve used the excuses or heard them at one time or another. Be honest with a tutor if you haven’t studied or been doing your homework. The sooner we know your situation, the sooner we can start working in the right direction.

6. Tutors won’t do the work for you

Again, we were students before. We know we can answer the question; we’re here to help get you to that point. You’ll have to learn it eventually, so let the tutor help you.

7. A tutor can’t implant knowledge

A tutor can only help you study so much before a test. If you haven’t been studying at all, don’t expect a tutor to fill your brain with all the answers the night before. They’ll do their best, but cramming at the last minute isn’t effective for most students.


Now that you have the tips, Los Angeles, implement them! Contact us today and we’ll match you with an amazing tutor.

Defeat the Dreaded DBQ (Essays) | TutorNerds

Don’t let friends freak you out or teachers terrify you. Document Based Questions (DBQs) are nothing more than essay questions with answers provided. You’re given anywhere from three to fifteen documents (letters, art, maps, statistics, flyers, etc.) and a related question to answer in essay format. The test is not whether you know the information or not; the test is if you can construct an intelligent answer using the information provided. That being said, it isn’t something most students grasp quickly. Analyzing takes practice, but with practice comes skill and soon you’ll be cracking DBQs with ease.


You can defeat DBQ’s in the following ways:

First, read the question. Then re-read it, and read it again until you completely understand what is being asked. Underline key words and take notes, anything to help you focus on the question. Remembers, the point is not to show how much you know, it’s to use the articles to take a side, and answer the question. A good practice is to consider what the answer could be and what side you’d agree with before looking through the articles. This way you’ll know what you’re looking for before you begin; this could help cut down time you need to organize your argument.

Interpret and organize. Read each piece and determine where it fits best. Is the author reliable? What’s their point of view? Is there an overall change in opinion between all documents? What specific evidence can you use to support your answer? Usually, you can take notes on the pages or utilize scratch paper to keep track of important facts or points. As you read, organize the articles into categories, supporting one side or another. This provides you a way to see the bigger picture; what the articles are saying and what evidence best supports your thesis.

Write a stellar thesis and outline completely. In terms of format, DBQs are like standard
essays. Outline a clear introduction, body paragraphs (supporting evidence) and a conclusion. Your thesis, as usual, is within the introduction and should act as the “answer” to the DBQ question. Along with your thesis should be the main points of your argument and background information. Nothing lengthy, only provide enough to give the reader an idea of the topic and context of the question.

Write, write, and write. Use your outline as a guide for how you’ll proceed. Keep an eye on your progress, ensuring you’re answering the question.


Clear and concise body paragraphs. One way to begin is to discuss the strongest evidence first and work your way down. You want the reader to agree with you, so let your resources and analysis prove your thesis. It can be challenging to use every document, but try not to leave out more than one or two. Also, there’s no need to use lengthy quotations. Instead, paraphrase or use short quotations while referencing the document used. In summary, don’t just tell the reader about the documents; tell the reader how the documents substantiate your thesis.

Don’t forget your conclusion. Nothing complicated here either; rephrase the thesis, summarize your argument and indicate areas of further exploration.

Double check. Once you’re finished, go back to make sure your thesis is clear and you’ve
included citations where needed.

Give yourself a pat on the back. You finished a DBQ that probably scared most students in the class. However, you remained cool and calm, knowing you had all the skills and tools to answer even the toughest questions.

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Creativity & Failure | TutorNerds

Adapting to progress is an integral part of a student’s success. You must work hard in grade school, then, when the time comes, leverage your successes so they give you the best shot at admissions. Let’s jump ahead a bit. Say your admissions campaign was a success. With the assistance of a tutor from TutorNerds, you’ve chosen the best school, submitted a moving essay, and charmed interviewers with your humility and passion. For the past year and a half, it’s been all about what makes you stand out. More importantly, it’s been about your skills and accomplishments.

Beaming with self-confidence, you get into your top school of choice. Eager to get to work, you open your first online assignment, which reads, “Create a resume of your failures.” That’s right, failures. If you were enrolled in environmental engineer Jack V. Matson’s “Failure 101” course, then you would most likely be faced with such a daunting task. You may be asking yourself why a professor would create such a course. Simply put, failure is the soil from which creativity grows.

imaginationTo illustrate, The New York Times quotes the professor as saying, “the frequency and intensity of failures is an implicit principle of the course. Getting into a creative mind-set involves a lot of trial and error.” Creativity – it’s more than just a buzzword these days, it’s what will get you your dream job. Creativity is what will wake up you up in the middle of the night to program the next billion dollar app. But wait, what if I’m not creative? Like any other unfamiliar skill, learn it!
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