September 2002 Vol. 5.9    
http://www.strategicstudies.com
 ..
President's
Message


Successful Learning

Showing That You Care - 25 Ways

Here's The Y on Algebra

Getting Ahead

Building Self-Esteem

Discipline That Works

Birthday Fun

The Family Pledge

Super September Links!

Top of Page

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

President's
Message


Successful Learning

Showing That You Care - 25 Ways

Here's The Y on Algebra

Getting Ahead

Building Self-Esteem

Discipline That Works

Birthday Fun

The Family Pledge

Super September Links!

Top of Page

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

President's
Message


Successful Learning

Showing That You Care - 25 Ways

Here's The Y on Algebra

Getting Ahead

Building Self-Esteem

Discipline That Works

Birthday Fun

The Family Pledge

Super September Links!

Top of Page

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

President's
Message


Successful Learning

Showing That You Care - 25 Ways

Here's The Y on Algebra

Getting Ahead

Building Self-Esteem

Discipline That Works

Birthday Fun

The Family Pledge

Super September Links!

Top of Page

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

President's
Message


Successful Learning

Showing That You Care - 25 Ways

Here's The Y on Algebra

Getting Ahead

Building Self-Esteem

Discipline That Works

Birthday Fun

The Family Pledge

Super September Links!

Top of Page

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

President’s Message

It's quiet in the neighborhood now that the children are off to school.  The yellow school bus comes trudging down the street each morning to pick up their precious cargo.  That yellow bus has been picking up children for school for years and years.  When I look at a classroom, it looks remarkably similar to the classrooms of twenty or thirty years ago.  Yet we as a community have changed....There are certainly more of us, there are more cars, more stores, more houses and much more information.  Our businesses have changed....the workplace can be many different places now and work hours are more fluid.  Communicating has changed....no longer are we tied to a telephone line, the phone picks up and goes with us everywhere.  And email and instant messaging is taking the place of postal mail.  Oh! How we have changed.  But there goes the yellow school bus to deliver our precious children to a classroom like it has always been.  Just when we thought we had changed, we find we haven't.  

As the days get shorter I find myself anxious to spend time outside each day.  I feel cheated if I haven't found the time to get out for a quick walk or a stroll through my waning garden.  This is a special time of year.  There is  anticipation in the air.  It is as if all the living creatures are preparing for a change.  The bees and butterflies are busy getting the last bit of pollen, the plants are shedding their blooms and leaves are beginning to brown around the edges.  It's a time for reflection and planning.  

Enjoy your days this month my friends.  
Send email to Marty

Have you checked out Homeschool Corner lately?  You will find lots of resources that will help you in homeschooling your children.  Take advantage of the Bulletin Board to respond to or to answer questions from visitors.     
 
More New Lessons at e-Tutor:

High School                                                                                     

  • Oxidation Number: The Key to Chemical Reactions
  • Global Trade
  • A Leader in Cereal Crops
  • Improving Cereal Varieties
  • Increasing Plant Production

Middle/Junior High

  • The Three Branches of the U.S. Government                                                                                                                              

New lessons are added on a regular basis.

Page 2

Have you ever noticed how shore birds and gulls face into the wind when they are at rest on the beach?  Of course, it keeps their feathers in perfect position.  A good philosophy in life is to face your troubles.  Don't let them ruffle your feathers.

Eleanor E. Dater

Successful Learning

According to many educators, parental involvement in a child's education is one of the building blocks of success.  A child's attitude toward learning begins in the home.  We  have a responsibility to stress the importance of education.

Following are some suggestions which can make a difference in your student's success:

  • Establish a regular time for your child to study.  Having a specific starting time and ending time shows that it is a priority and an integral part of the child's daily schedule.
  • Create the right environment for learning.  A quiet place at a desk or table with proper light is all that is needed.  Keep extra pencils and scrap paper handy.  Absolutely no television or music. 
  • Talk with your children about their school day.  Listen carefully.  If they see it is important to you and you take them seriously, they will take it seriously also. 
  • Get involved with the school.  Join the parent organizations.  Get to know your child's teachers and their evaluation of your child's skills and abilities.
  • Set a good example.  Leisure reading is an important activity in support of a good education.  Read newspapers and books.  Take trips together to the library.
  • Acknowledge good effort as well as success.

Knowing you recognize their efforts will encourage children to keep trying.  Help them recognize why the effort failed and what it will take to succeed next time.   

It is no disgrace to start over.  It is usually an opportunity.

George Matthew Adams

Showing That You Care - 25 Ways

We are always looking for ways to praise children for a job well done.  We know that there are few things more powerful than praise to motivate students to do better work.  And praise also helps build self-esteem.  These were listed in a Virginia school newsletter:

  • Remarkable

  • I knew you could do it

  • Nice work

  • You're on top of it

  • Bravo

  • You're on target

  • Dynamite

  • Awesome

  • You brighten my day

  • You are responsible

  • You're important

  • You've discovered the secret

  • Now you've got it

  • Marvelous

  • Exceptional performance

  • You're a real trooper

  • What a good listener

  • You care

  • Creative job

  • That's the best

  • Way to go

  • Nothing can stop you now

  • I'm proud of you

  • Hip, hip, hooray

  • You're growing up

Lake Braddock Secondary School, Burke, VA

Page 3

Keep a sense of humor, especially when things turn out differently from the way you hoped. 

Here's the "Y" on Algebra

Does any word strike greater fear in the hearts of American ninth-graders...and their parents...than algebra?  Students dread algebra, approach it as if it were toxic and, not surprisingly, do badly at it.  For all that, algebra is what educators call a gatekeeper course; you have to go through it to reach the possibilities beyond.  Algebra is the language of math and science.  It deals in abstractions...using letters to generalize math operations...that expand thinking skills.  

Students who take algebra tend to go to college, research shows.  The gaps in test scores tend to disappear if students have taken upper-level math courses, beginning with algebra.   Ninth grade algebra has always been an American tradition.  But isolating algebra that way means that about 90% of a ninth-grade math book is new material...a huge blast of abstract thinking after years of easy-going arithmetic.

Grouping by ability largely was dropped in U.S. schools in the 1970s...except in math, where even second and third graders are often divided by skill level.  Children learn a powerful method from tracking that they are not smart..."in math."  Worse, it sticks with them in high school, where they can opt for dumbed-down math courses, with names like commercial math or vocational math.  

Not only is the abstraction of algebra befuddling, it's often the first class that parents can't help with...they either never took algebra themselves or can't remember it...and for many students, there's no where else to turn. Parents using e-Tutor with their students can use the parent login to find algebra lessons that their students are working on.  They can practice or refresh their memories to keep up with their children. 

Adapted from Wall Street Journal, June 16, 1998

 

Getting Ahead

Being "maze smart"...having the intuitive and developed ability to shorten the distance in time necessary to attain the goals being pursued....can move you ahead faster.  People blessed with the practical intelligence to be maze smart show these characteristics:

  • The delegate as many consequential tasks...not just trivial ones...as they can.

  • They do not over plan.  They approach important tasks with a general strategy and assume that decisions will become clear as events unfold. 

  • The think more in terms of tasks accomplished than time spent on them. 

  • They are honest in evaluating what has been done poorly....not just what has been done well.

  • They disavow hard-nosed attitudes such as, "Work is work, you don't need to enjoy it."

Passport to Power by William Thourlby


Instead of envying others, be inspired by them.

Building Self-Esteem 

To have the confidence to do our best, we all need healthy self-esteem....a genuine respect for our talents and abilities.  With high self-esteem, we no longer view our lives as a competitive battlefield, where the only way to win is by beating down others.  Rather, we win by using our strengths to contribute to the lives of those around us...and we appreciate their contributions to our lives, as well.

Here are a few tips to help you enhance your self-esteem:

  • Stop comparing your self unfavorably to others.  Instead, set attainable, but challenging, personal objectives that support your personals goals. 

  • Stop putting yourself down.  Whether you are speaking about your appearance, career, or skills, remember that put-downs only reinforce negative thoughts.  Worse yet, they can become destructive self-fulfilling prophesies.

  • Affirm yourself.  On an index card, write down your most valuable traits.  Refer to this card often to remind yourself of your worth.  

  • Associate with positive, supportive people.  Remember, negativity can be extremely contagious.

  • Be true to yourself.  If you are making decisions based exclusively on getting approval from others, you are losing control of your life, jeopardizing your self-respect and robbing yourself of fresh, creative ideas.

  • Genuinely care about and cultivate the self-esteem of others.  They will usually return the favor.  Besides, when you help other members of your team feel good about their ideas and efforts, it will ultimately make you and your entire group more successful. 

Quill Pen Pall

Page 4

Organizational skills are always cornerstones of business success.

 

Discipline That Works

The hope of every parent is to have children who are responsible, concerned members of society.  Discipline is, of course, part of this effort.  Research has repeatedly shown that, despite the importance of the peer group, parents usually have much more influence than they realize.  Disciplining children takes a great deal of effort, but the main idea is that children ad parents can change.  Changing behavior requires much time and well-though-out reactions.  Some parents simply do not have the time, energy, or patience to attempt to motivate change in the child or even in themselves.  It is not easy, but read on.  You will be convinced that it can be done. 

You Can Do It!

Here are some suggestions for positive steps toward better discipline in your home.

  1. Let your children know you like them.  Tell your children how much you admire their good qualities.  Don't take their good behavior for granted.  Remember to reward them once in a while.  One of the most powerful rewards for children is the love, interest, and attention they receive from their mother and father. 
  2. Let your children know exactly what you expect of them...set limits.  Youngsters...who would be the last to admit it...find too much freedom frightening.  Set limits for the actions that your children are not ready to control themselves.  Children need need to know exactly what parents expect of them and also how parents will react to their behavior.
  3. Encourage responsible decision making.  Whenever possible, find areas in which you know your children can make decisions for themselves.  You will find that if you treat children as responsible individuals, their level of responsibility increases rapidly.
  4. Set a good example.  Remember that children are great imitators.  While you are telling your children why you think they should not steal, cheat, or be cruel to others, be sure they cannot cite some example of your behavior that contradicts these values.  Be honest yourself...hypocrisy shows.
  5. Encourage your children to respect proper authority.  At home, in school, and in other areas of their lives, your children need to know the importance of respecting authority.  It is a simple fact that some things cannot or will not be changed.  Certain rules must be followed.  
  6. Have fun with your children.  Young people need to interact with adults.  Try choosing a regular time each week to do things as a family.  Invite your children to join you in some activities in which they may not usually be asked to participate.  Also encourage your children to ask questions and to express their own points of view.

Remember, changing or establishing parental discipline is a long, slow, often tedious, process.  The important thing is to form a clear objective, then take a few steps at a time in that direction.  

Adapted from National Education Association

 


Birthday Fun 
(For Teens or Anyone Who Enjoys Surprises)

Friendships are fun, but celebrating a friend's birthday can be really fun....and surprising.  You will need to do a little homework and plan ahead to pull off well presented birthday surprises.  Contact your friend's parents so they are aware of (and supportive) of your actions.  here are some ideas to get your creative juices flowing:

  • Contact a nearby company to acquire packaging Styrofoam peanuts.  Many companies give these away.  Strategically place these peanuts throughout the bedroom of the birthday candidate.  They will appreciate you as they find the little treasures over the next 12 years.

  • Those people that use dry cleaning become the lucky ones to develop a collection of cheap wire hangers.  Accumulate these hangers from a couple of sources and hang them everywhere in the birthday candidate's bedroom. 

  • Remove all the furniture from their bedroom and stack it in another room.  The trick is placing everything on the floor that was on the top of the desk but placed it just as if the desk was still there. 

  • Post-holidays are the best time to acquire decoration supplies from the 50 percent sales racks.  A favorite is tinsel.  Once spread out in the friend's room, they will be wearing it to school unknowingly attached to their clothes.  Candy hearts become very affordable around February 16.

Hallmark cannot quite say it like healthy bedroom vandalism does.  Honor those friendships.

 

The Family Pledge

We will sit down as a family for some of our meals.

We will build a family library, including some of our children's favorite books.

We will make family visits to libraries, museums, zoos, and other learning places.  We will talk about what we see.

We will set aside enough time to finish the day's homework assignments.

We will have family "study" time when parents read and children do their homework.

We will balance our time between reading or other creative activities and watching TV.

We will all share in the excitement and joy of learning.

We will take time to visit with one another and to show our love and appreciation for each other and for our family.

Monroe, North Carolina Schools

Page 5

Quality is never an accident, it is always the result of high intention, sincere effort, intelligent direction and skillful execution; it represents the wise choice of many alternatives. 

Willa A Foster


Super September Links!

Made in the U.S.A.:  A wealth of information about the early history of the United States can be found at the Making of America Web site.  The digital library contains about 1,600 books and 50,000 journal articles related to the period of history from the pre-Civil War era through Reconstruction.    http://www.umdl.umich.edu/moa/index.html

You Seek, You Find:  A guide to Internet research for high school and college students, this guide links to many sites that help with writing and researching term papers.  There is general advice for writing as well as links for specific subject areas.   http://www.useekufind.com/uiresear.htm

HyperHistory:  Amazing clickable chart covering 3,000 years of world history.
http://www.hyperhistory.com/online_n2/History_n2/a.html

Books for Children:  Association for Library Service to Children, a division of the American Library Association.
Lists of Newbery, Caldecott, and other award-winning and notable books, recordings, videotapes, Web sites, and software for children.
http://www.ala.org/alsc/

Franklin Institute Science Museum:  A wealth of fun, educational, and exciting information from the famed Philadelphia museum. Visit the online exhibits. "Educational /hotlists” offer valuable homework connections. Check out the “Kids Did This! Hotlist” featuring the work of children in such areas as art, science, and social studies.
http://sln.fi.edu/tfi/welcome.html

Measure 4 Measure:  A collection of interactive sites on the web that estimate, calculate, evaluate, translate, etc.  In other words, they do the work for you.  These sites allow you to convert between different units of measurements, find your ideal caloric consumption, calculate the amount of paint you need to paint a room and much more. http://www.convertauto.com/

Global Climate Change:  As the Earth's climate continues to warm and the existence of greenhouse gases further contributes to a growing ozone hole, it becomes increasingly important for students to learn how human activity and personal choice affect the environment in which they live.  http://www.exploratorium.edu/climate/index.html

Enjoy a Wonderful Month!

From the Staff at Strategic Studies Corporation

 
Copyright © 2002 Strategic Studies Corp.
http://www.strategicstudies.com