Josh

Kyla’s Story….

February 2021

There aren’t enough words to explain what Josh Aronovitch has been able to do for my 13 yr. old daughter as her tutor this year. If you are a parent who has ever had their child struggle with anything in school, as well as struggle with you at home when you try everything to help them, then please read on.

Since Preschool, Kyla has always been behind the rest of her peers in almost every skill, though she was not special ed. I held her back in 1st Grade, which I had known would be necessary from the first day, and it caught her up in some things. But as elementary school went on, she kept struggling more and more in every subject. I reached out to the school for any help they could provide, which came in the forms of being pulled from class, going to special before and after-school math and reading programs, and getting more time with her teachers after school. I even tried to get her an IEP, but she tested out of that by just 1 point.

As you can imagine, Kyla was not very receptive to this. She was always a well-behaved student and would do everything she could to please her teachers, but when coming home after trying so hard for hours every day, the idea of homework was impossible to her… and I couldn’t blame her. I tried everything imaginable to help her, teach her, have family who were actually elementary teachers help her, but there was no motivation or energy left at that point in the day. From the ages of around 6-11, Kyla would start throwing horrible tantrums at home if she didn’t understand her homework (which was almost every night). These tantrums involved screaming, shouting, crying, rolling all over the floor, slamming things, not eating dinner, crying herself to sleep… the emotional and physical toll this took on her caused her to “hate” school. I can’t even begin to describe the toll all of this took on both me, her older sister, and my parents (who we live with). I had to take her to a child therapist by the start of middle school, because I truly felt that there was nothing else I could do to make things better. Thankfully, she was very open with the therapist, and we were able to boost her self-esteem enough to at least stop the tantrums and understand that we were happy if she just tried her best, no matter what the grade looks like. She settled into middle school, just in time for the Covid-19 Pandemic to start up and force her into remote learning for the rest of 6th grade, and what looks to be all of 7th.

At the start of this school year (7th grade), I knew I would have to find a tutor who could assist Kyla in any subject she needed, just to keep her on the track she had started so well the previous year. I asked her guidance counselor for recommendations, and Josh is the first person I called. He wasn’t only able to assure me he could help Kyla… he was able to promise me that he could help her learn in a way that she would be able to understand, and really start to feel success in school. For the first time, I felt that someone was finally hearing me when I described the kind of help she needed… I had been telling teachers for years that Kyla just doesn’t understand things in the conventional learning models, but they just kept trying the same things over and over. Josh gave me validation that my instincts had been right all these years, and offered me a real solution… I was onboard!

That was November 2020. It’s now February 2021, and I barely recognize this confident, brilliant, empowered young girl who is consistently getting A’s and B’s in every subject with not one ounce of frustration! Since her very first session with Josh, I’ve watched Kyla’s mind finally “click” in all the areas in which she struggled, and she’s finally been able to see the potential that has been there all along. He has taught her how to understand a way of learning that works in the way she needs, which no teacher or specialist had been able to do in all these years of school. The self-confidence I see in her is breathtaking, and I know we’ll never have to go through those struggles of the past ever again. Keep in mind, he was able to get her to this point of truly enjoying school in the middle of a year of fully remote learning, when we still don’t leave the house unless it’s essential due to the ongoing pandemic. And he’s only been working with her 1 or 2 hours a week, for about 4 months! Our home has a much more positive atmosphere, and Kyla continues to improve in every subject area. I’m so proud of her, and so grateful that Josh came into our lives. He truly cares about Kyla, and has even become a trusted confidant for her.

I can’t say enough wonderful things about Josh, b/c there aren’t enough words. The gift he has given my daughter is one that has set her on a path for success throughout her life, in a way I couldn’t have imagined. I believe he can reach any student, at any age, and show them how to succeed. If you’re still not sure, please read my story again. If there’s a chance for you and your child to avoid any of the frustration we went through, then I encourage you to set up just one session with Josh. Your child is worth it.

  • Tracey Lee

SAT Prep in the Time of Covid19

We have all been impacted by Covid19, directly and indirectly, and in ways large and small.  It has changed the course of our lives educationally and it has impacted our mental health, even if we have not been touched by it physically.  For many, SAT prep is the furthest thing from their minds -and that is okay.  But life goes on.  For sophomores and juniors, now is the time to seriously think about college.  Many colleges have moved to test optional policies, but this doesn’t mean what many think it means.

 

Colleges are judged based on how selective they are.  There are only two ways to become more selective:  accept less people or get more people to apply.  Accepting less people is not an option, because it means less money.  So many of a college’s business decisions are best understood from the perspective of, “how do we get more people to apply.”  So picture the decision makers, around a large conference table.  They ask, why do people not apply?  Because they don’t think they would get in.  Why don’t they think they would get in?  Because they have really bad SAT scores.  Et voila!  Test optional policies are born.  The truth is, that the overwhelming majority of students who do not submit scores to competitive schools are not admitted…schools just assume their scores would have been bad if submitted and reject them acordingly.  Students who are admitted without scores are the truly exceptional, who would have been admitted even with really bad scores.

 

Bottom line:  in many ways, high SAT scores are more important than ever.  They can get you into colleges you wouldn’t have gotten into otherwise, and for some even more importantly, get you significant scholarships at schools that would otherwise be unaffordable.  The good news, is that the SAT is a conquerable, beatable test.  With the right coach.  And that’s where I come in.

Contact me today for information about virtual SAT classes and/or one on one coaching.  Much is on hold in the time of Covid19, but getting closer to your college dreams doesn’t have to be.

Josh Aronovitch

856-341-0503

[email protected]

NEW SAT CLASSES FORMING

Class Date Time Location
Pre Test Mon 8/1 4PM-8PM Washington Township
Lesson 1 Tues 8/2 8AM-12:30PM Washington Township
Lesson 2 Tues 8/9 8AM-12:30PM Washington Township
Lesson 3 Tues 8/16 8AM-12:30PM Washington Township
Lesson 4 Tues 8/23 8AM-12:30PM Washington Township
Lesson 5 Tues 8/30 8AM-12:30PM Washington Township

 

Class Date Time Location
Pre Test Sun 8/21/or Tues 8/23 8AM-12PM Washington Township
Lesson 1 Sun 8/28 8AM-12:30PM Washington Township
Lesson 2 Sun 9/4 8AM-12:30PM Washington Township
Lesson 3 Sun 9/11 8AM-12:30PM Washington Township
Lesson 4 Sun 9/18 8AM-12:30PM Washington Township
Lesson 5 Sun 9/25 8AM-12:30PM Washington Township

Why the SAT is more important than ever

The SAT is more important than ever.  It shouldn’t be.  The test, like any standardized test, is coachable and beatable with the right approach.  It is not an accurate measure of a student’s intelligence or a representation of how well a person will do in college.  So why do colleges put so much weight on it?

Imagine you are a junior in high school.  (If you are, you won’t need to imagine!) Think about your US History class.  Your teacher may be easier or harder than your friend’s teacher.  A 95 in your class may not mean the same performance as a 95 in your friend’s class.  So all things are not equal, even in the same class in the same school.  Comparing students who take different classes with different teachers in different schools in different states with different curricula on the basis of GPA?  It’s not comparing apples to apples.   It’s not even comparing apples to oranges.  It’s more like comparing wrenches to kiwis.  (Two things that have nothing to do with each other.)  The SAT, for all its myriad of faults, at least compares everyone on the same scale.  This is why colleges have relied and continue to rely on it.

But what about the whole SAT optional trend?  There is a growing movement to make SATs optional and it has reached 280 schools.  This is not what it appears to be.  Think about it from the college perspective.  The college’s goal is simple, yet complex.  Assemble the best possible freshman class, with a diverse set of experiences and a high standard of academic, athletic, and extra curricular excellence.  Colleges know that the more selective they appear, the better they will do recruiting top students. Selectivity is a simple math formula:  number of admitted students / number of applicants.  Admitting less students = less money for the college, so this is a non starter.  Becoming more selective requires increasing the applicant pool.  Applicants with poor SAT scores do not apply if they do not believe they have a chance to be admitted.  Et voila!  Make SATs optional and watch the applications roll in and selectivity increase, which leads to even more applications.   Most SAT optional schools do not accept the vast majority of students who do not submit SAT scores.  They do accept some.  These are students who are so attractive to the college for their other indications of excellence (academic, athletic, or otherwise) that they would likely be admitted regardless of how low their SAT scores, and they might not have applied because they assumed their SAT scores disqualified them.  This is why SAT optional policies are a win-win for colleges.  Students with high scores still submit them, and colleges can have their cake and eat it too.

Additionally, the new SAT is more closely alligned with high school curricula and will let colleges pretend that it is more predictive of collegiate success than it really is for at least a few more years.

SAT scores are also still the primary determinant of non financial need based scholarships, whether schools are SAT optional or not.

In short, in spite of trends toward making  the SAT optional, this highly coachable and beatable test remains as important as ever.  Any student who wants to increase the number of college acceptances or the amount of scholarship money is encouraged to work hard to improve his or her score.

Josh