Education Archives - Make The Grade

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While many students will be starting their school year online due to COVID, parents or guardians may begin to feel the pressures of making sure their children complete all assignments, understands all class materials and passes all their classes. Between technical difficulties and not having an in-person class, students may not be able to communicate with their teachers as effectively as before. Before you or your children stress about this school year, check out the ways mAke the grAde supports families during this unprecedented time due to COVID. 

We Provide a Personal Learning Plan

Everyone learns differently and at their own pace. At mAke the grAde, we take that fact into consideration and make a personalized learning plan for each student. Before beginning lessons, we go over what students need to be successful and adapt the lessons accordingly. And then we want to make sure that every student leaves mAke the grAde understanding everything that is needed to be known to have a successful educational experience.  Learn more here:

We Include Many Courses

mAke the grAde is a one-stop-shop for all your educational needs. We provide many courses including ACT and SAT prep, science, math, time management and more. Each one of these courses will include different elements like 24/7 access, live office hours, direct message support and exclusive access to posts and videos. 

We Provide Multiple Lesson Schedules

At mAke the grAde, we provide different schedules for lessons or meetings that fit around your time. They have three different allocated durations you can choose from — 15 minutes, 30 minutes or one hour. In these meetings, you and your child can go over any problems, issues or questions you may have about a course, tutoring or even a homework assignment. We are here for you no matter the time. Once you make an appointment, you will get an email confirmation and a reminder. 

We Work With all Ages

We don’t just help younger students. At mAke the grAde, we help anyone of any age to improve science, math and time management skills. If you have an older child prepping for the ACT or SAT, mAke the grAde provides detailed courses. At the end of the day, we want to share education with all ages. 

Call a Professional

We understand the difficulties families face during the COVID crisis. We work day and night to make sure we provide the best tutoring and lesson planning for every child. For more information on how mAke the grAde supports families during this pandemic, contact us today.

Homeschooling is a great option for some families. If you are considering taking this direction for educating your middle school-aged children, here is some helpful information you need to know.


Who Should Consider Homeschooling?

Homeschooling is a great option for middle schoolers who need more flexibility than a traditional classroom can give. Homeschooling offers an enriching environment where students can be more focused on lessons without the distractions that can come from a school setting. Other students who can benefit from a homeschool environment include those who have just moved to a new area and those who have health issues that make it difficult to be in class with other students.


Use This Time for Transitioning to High School

Middle school is a time of great change and preparation. During your homeschooling sessions, spend some time focusing on lessons and exercises that will prepare your children for high school. In high school, students will be expected to be more mature and exhibit some independence. The quality of their work will also need to be at a higher level. Get your children ready for these changes by slowly introducing these qualities in your lessons. Allow your children to work independently on their schoolwork and start expecting more from them academically.


Add Electives to Your Curriculum

Middle school is the perfect time to let your children begin to make choices about their education. In a traditional classroom setting, middle school students are introduced to elective classes from which they can choose. Offer the same types of choices to your children as part of their homeschooling curriculum. Allowing your children to have a say in what topics they are learning about will help give them a sense of ownership about their education, encourage them to take their lessons seriously and instill a love of learning in them.


Plan Field Trips

Avoid the mistake of taking the “home” part of homeschooling too literally. Learning can happen anywhere, and taking your middle school-aged children on field trips is a great way to break up the school day and keep the education coming. Your children will love a chance to get out of the home classroom and experience life by taking trips to museums, plays and symphony concerts. You can even take them on real-life adventures like visiting a TV or radio station or something similar. The sky’s the limit, and it is the perfect opportunity to introduce your middle school children to everything life has to offer.


You have many options and opportunities when you homeschool your middle school-aged children. If you think homeschooling is an option you want to consider, contact mAke the grAde Academic Services today, and we can help get you started.

The year 2020 has propelled all of us into unprecedented times. Each aspect of our lives has been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, from our core choices of careers to the daily struggles of shopping at our favorite stores. There is no more vital area that has been impacted than the education of our children. This is where virtual learning and homeschooling comes into play.

Earlier this year, our entire nation was suddenly thrust into teaching our children at home. The balance of jobs and educational demands was juggled, as families and schools scrambled to adjust. For instance, many families were operating in survival mode, which is entirely understandable and acceptable in the short term. However, now is the time to move from emergency responses to that of choice, direction and empowerment.

You can thrive in either a distance learning or a homeschool environment. Your family can grow in purpose and vision as you become intricately involved in the educational journey together. Achieve maximum education for your children with these practical methods of success.

Help your child reach maximum potential through the offerings of mAke the grAde while doing virtual learning and homeschooling. Contact Dr. Greene for an individualized learning plan today. Allow him to partner with you to thrive in all of your educational endeavors.

Adopt a Positive Mindset

The reasons to be stressed about educational choices are obvious. We have never been less capable of predicting what the next year will bring, yet every challenge brings tremendous opportunity. This situation allows you and your children to embark on a quest for learning together. Your children will see you model what being a life-long learner involves. You will research, learn, assess and adjust along the way. In addition, make an intentional choice to choose joy in this journey of virtual learning and homeschooling.

Limit Exposure to the News

Part of adopting a positive mindset is taking mastery over the programming that you allow into your home. It is important to stay well-informed, but it is not wise for the latest headlines to invade your home’s sense of peace and safety. Consider your children’s ages and sensitivities to current events in making decisions about exposure to news sources.

The parents should filter information first and then give just the amount of exposure that encourages positive mental health and communication. It is okay to turn everything off and focus on your own family.

Instead of allowing the news’s negative nature to take away your family’s joy, redirect your thoughts to how you can positively impact the world around you. Do yard work for an elderly neighbor, record stories for younger siblings or family members and write notes of appreciation to grandparents, veterans and others in isolation. Take positive action to relieve the angst of the current unrest around you.

Keep Lines of Communication Open

Talk and listen to your children. Find out their fears and misgivings and share your own. Your children may be facing feelings of isolation, loneliness, anxiety and fear, but may feel reluctant to tell you. Encourage your child by providing a safe environment to express these feelings without quickly dismissing or redirecting them. Think of ways to manage and monitor challenges as a family. Take advantage of this virtual learning and homeschooling to foster open communication.

Develop a Schedule

Though a schedule does not have to be rigid, it does provide a framework to build for success. You now have the advantage of making a plan that maximizes your child’s sleep patterns and learning styles. People thrive through predictability and structure, so try to aim for having the same beginning and ending times each day.

Develop both an individual schedule for each family member and a centralized master schedule that shows important meetings, activities and objectives. This strategy will encourage the mindset of the family as a team working together for common goals. Be sure to include your important meetings, project deadlines and other items. Your children will see the need for being quiet and self-directed at points throughout the day.

Take advantage of color-coding and symbols that will allow your family members to identify and utilize the calendars in executing their days quickly. For individual schedules, you may color-code by subject or due date. For your master calendar, you might select a color representing each individual that best matches their personality or interest. Make all of your family’s schedules practical and easy to adjust and reuse.

Create a Designated Work Space

Set up a quiet space with few distractions. Make the area enjoyable by decorating with inviting colors and inspiring pictures, quotes and items that encourage your children to achieve their particular goals. The reduction of clutter in the workspace will increase focus on the tasks at hand.

Find out from your children what is most distracting to each individual and plan accordingly. One child needs absolute quiet, while another requires the “white noise” of a sound machine or instrumental music to function in the best way possible. To one child, a pet takes away focus from the study, yet for another child, the pet might bring comfort and a center for their attention. Take advantage of this opportunity to individualize your children’s working space to their strengths. Seek feedback and plan accordingly.

Feed Your Bodies before Feeding Your Minds

Proper nutrition is a must. Eating a good breakfast provides the fuel necessary for prime academic performance. Memory and attention are especially connected to proper nutrition.

Research healthy recipes together for high-protein, flavorful foods. Make this a positive, interactive part of the day that encourages communication and togetherness before turning the focus to the day’s demands.

Seek Proper Rest

To meet the demands of this uncertain time, you need ample rest. The benefits of proper sleep are remarkable. It increases immunity and restores energy for worn muscles and minds. Additionally, it sharpens focus and creativity and healing of body and mind. Limit late-night television and video games, encouraging everyone to charge their devices and turn off their electronics one to two hours before going to bed. Work out a schedule that may include earlier bedtimes and waking times for younger children and later scheduling for older family members. This strategy allows for staggered use of materials and equipment and time for personalized instruction.

Encourage your children to see the advantages of proper sleep and get their input on the amount of sleep that works best. Demonstrate your belief in an adequate rest by also getting the sleep that you need. This practice will allow you to prepare your family’s minds for the relentless demands of virtual learning and homeschooling.

Charge Your Devices While Charging Yourselves

A part of preparation is having all of your devices cleared, wiped down and prepped for the next day. Pull up the websites and bookmarks that you need beforehand to allow you to plunge into the tasks. Set up a charging station to charge your devices while refueling your mind with restorative sleep. Just the act of plugging in allows everyone to break away from their devices and “unplug” as a way to distress at the end of a long, productive day.

Inspire Self-Directed Learning

Take advantage of this opportunity to show your children that no one knows everything. Remind them that the future of their education does not rely on a pre-packaged program or particular teacher or expert. The responsibility for their success will increasingly fall in their own hands.

Select a topic about which the entire family has great curiosity but little knowledge. This choice might be in a practical area, such as a home repair, creative update or physical activity. Then, research together on methods, materials and strategies. Watch demonstrations, find capable instructors and learn and evaluate together. Actively experiment with the new endeavor, finding what works well and what does not. In every step along the way, you are modeling how to pursue meaningful education, self-monitor success, evaluate and make adjustments. The investment will pay out both short-term and long-term advantages.

Use the experience to springboard into practical methods for instruction. Encourage your children to take charge of their learning by forming questions, planning and anticipating what to expect from lessons. In this way, your children will see education as an endeavor to embrace instead of an experience to endure.

How Can We Help with Virtual Learning

By applying these winning strategies to your home-learning experience, you will set up your family for a memorable, enjoyable adventure. Don’t feel that you have to make this journey alone. Look to the experts around you for support, guidance and inspiration. We at “mAke the grAde” educational services stand ready to help you develop a flexible, winning system that maximizes education for your family.

Dr. Steven Greene, “The Success Doctor,” founded this academic services company in 1997 upon the philosophy that every student deserves individual attention.

Dr. Greene understands the climate of the current times and that each situation is unique. The structure of mAke the grAde gives much-needed flexibility, including one-to-one tutoring sessions, small group classes, online-based courses, educational podcasts and endless support through an online success community. Academic tutoring for all levels of math and branches of science is available, as well as preparation for SAT, PSAT and ACTs.

Help your child reach maximum potential through the offerings of mAke the grAde while doing virtual learning and homeschooling. Contact Dr. Greene for an individualized learning plan today. Allow him to partner with you to thrive in all of your educational endeavors.

Homeschooling is a great option for some families. If you are considering taking this direction for education your high school-aged children, here is some helpful information you need to know.

Homeschooling in High School is Different From Other Grades

The approach to homeschooling high school students is a bit different from homeschooling younger students. The curriculum gets much more difficult in high school. If you are not able to provide a significant breadth of knowledge for your children, you may need to seek out some supplemental assistance to adequately teach your children to the extent needed to graduate and get into college.

Teach Study Skills

High school students need to study more than they needed to in middle or grade school. Unfortunately, study skills are not innate and need to be learned. So, it is crucial to teach your homeschooled children strong study skills. Focus on teaching your children how to take notes in class, how to take an essay test and other skills that will help them succeed throughout high school and beyond.

Choosing a Curriculum

The basis for having a home-based school is a strong curriculum. There are many curricula out there from which you can choose. You need to choose the one that is the best fit for you and your high school-aged children. Think about what you want to teach and how you want to teach it. You must also take into consideration any requirements you need to cover for your children to be able to graduate with a valid high school diploma.

Fulfill State Requirements

Each state has its own high school graduation requirements. Homeschoolers are not exempt from their requirements. So, it is imperative that you include these requirements in your homeschooling lessons. It is best to know these requirements before you start teaching your high school curriculum so you do not overlook anything. You also need to keep abreast of any changes that occur over the course of your children’s education so you can ensure you are teaching the right materials at all times.

You have many options and opportunities when you homeschool your high school-aged children. If you think homeschooling is an option you want to consider, contact mAke the grAde Academic Services today, and we can help get you started.

The life of a student is demanding. Every class comes with many assignments and other responsibilities that need to be organized. Unfortunately, students do not always have the best organizational skills and need help in that area. Thankfully, with today’s technology, help is not far away. The cloud is the perfect solution for students who need organizational help. Here are some easy ways the cloud can help students organize their student life.

File Storage

The cloud is an excellent place for students to store their files. There is enough space in the cloud for students to store every file for every subject. So, it will be impossible for them to lose any assignments or other important information. Students are likely storing everything electronically anyway, so saving them on the cloud only takes an extra moment and can save a lot of stress.

Easy Access to Files

A vital factor in staying organized is having easy access to schoolwork. The cloud is easy to access anywhere. So, it eliminates the issue of forgetting important assignments at home or otherwise not being able to turn them in when they are due. When school work is saved on the cloud, it is easy to gain access it no matter where a student may be. So, late or missing assignments can become problems of the past.

Instant Updates to Files

The life of a student is often hectic and assignments are often worked on in bits and pieces, at different times and in different places. When students save their work to the cloud it keeps everything organized and intact. Using the cloud is an excellent way for students to make doing their schoolwork accommodate their busy lives. When they use the cloud, no matter how many times they add work or make amendments to an assignment, the newest version will be saved. So, there is no fear of work being lost or different versions being saved on various devices. When an assignment is complete, a student needs only to access it on the cloud with confidence that is the final version of what was created.

Collaboration Made Easy

Teachers love to assign group projects. But, students often find it difficult to coordinate schedules. But, when the assignment is uploaded to the cloud, all problems are solved. Each student in the group can do his or her part and they can all converge on the cloud to create one complete assignment.


If you have questions or would like more information on how a student can use the cloud to organize school life, contact mAke the grAde Academic Services today.

One of the biggest challenges students face is managing their time effectively. However, learning how to effectively manage your academic time to get the most out of it is not impossible. Here are some great tips for getting the most out of your academic time.

Create a Calendar

The first step in effectively managing your academic time is to create a calendar that spans your entire term. You can choose whatever format works best for you and fits into your life comfortably. But, it is crucial to have a centralized place where you can write down everything you need to do. Some events to include on your calendar include:

  • Assignments and due dates.
  • Dates of tests.
  • School activities.
  • Extracurricular activities.

When everything is filled out in their appropriate places, you will easily be able to see how you have to spread your work out so you do not get overloaded and where you have extra time to spend on non-academic pursuits.


Prepare a Weekly Schedule

Once you have your entire term laid out, use that as a basis for creating a weekly schedule. When you see your work laid out one week at a time it naturally breaks it up into more manageable pieces. On Sunday night, before your school week starts, prepare your schedule for the week. This schedule should not be static. As new tasks come up, add them to the appropriate places in your schedule. Some events to include in your weekly schedule include:

  • All the classes you need to attend.
  • Items from your term calendar that need to be completed that week.
  • Extra-curricular events going on that week.
  • All planned study sessions.
  • All group project meetings.

When writing these events on your weekly calendar, note the date and time each one will occur.


Create a Daily Plan

Before the school day starts, write a plan for the day based on the weekly schedule. As you go through the day, check off the items as you complete them. To create the daily plan, follow these steps:

  • Write down everything from the weekly schedule that needs to be done.
  • Write down tasks from the previous day that did not get done.
  • Write down extracurricular activities or other events that need to get done that day.


Other Tips for Managing Time

Some other tips for managing your academic time include:

  • Prioritize your assignments.
  • Find a dedicated study space.
  • Create blocks of study time.
  • Schedule activities for after your schoolwork is done.
  • Use helpful resources.
  • Join a study group.
  • Treat yourself well by getting exercise, eating right and sleeping well.
  • Be flexible.


Having effective and efficient study skills is an integral part of being a successful student. If you have questions about how to manage your time or if you need help taking that first step, contact mAke the grAde today.

What type of parent (or person?) are you? 

Parenting is a tough job.  No question about it.  It’s always been difficult but it’s been particularly challenging in the last four months  With the necessity for parents to simultaneously provide childcare, oversee education academics, and work from home.  This is very stressful not only for the parents but also for the children and the household overall.

Personal story here? I know how you feel because… 

Case study? A recent student…


How parents plan, or react, or ignore, the circumstances have an enormous impact on their household and on their children.    It’s very important that our children have leadership and structure so that they can maximize their education despite the stresses of the outside world.  Of course, this period of time is stressful for everyone, particularly, perhaps, children but also parents as well and everyone will cope differently with the stresses.

Having spoken to hundreds of parents since the outbreak in March I have determined that there are essentially are 3 types of parent – and for hat matter people –  in the world:

  1. Proactive People
  2. Reactive People
  3. Inactive People

So, which type are you?

How does your style of parenting impact your child’s academics?

Let’s take a quick look at each type of style and how they deal with the academic day.

Proactive parents / people 

Proactive parents plan ahead. They anticipate what’s going to come up in the future and they have a prior system in place to deal with it. In terms of parenting and academics these are the sort of people who arrange for tutoring and other types of support before their children might actually need it because they want to avoid any sort of issue. They never let a small problem become a medium or large problem.   These types of parents generally have lower stress because they do not allow circumstances to reach a point that would become stressful.   These are the type of parents who have their five structures of success in place and utilize the three tenants of Maximum Education.   They expect their children to be successful because their children are in a situation that leads to success.

Reactive parents / people

Reactive parents deal with things as they happen. They wait until there is an issue but they do act quickly once the issue arises. Academically speaking these are the sort of people who will call a tutor the first day after their student comes home with a subpar grade on a quiz or test.  Sometimes reactive people have a system in place where they have a support mechanism that has worked for them that they have used in the past and sometimes they don’t, so their stress level is going to vary depending on how quickly they can solve the problems in the moment.  Reactive parents probably have some aspects of the structures and systems in place, but often do not use them consistently.   They tend to be tolerant of imperfections and the inevitable ups and downs of the  academic cycles.

Inactive parents / people 

Inactive parents basically do not react or are not proactive in any situation. In the academic realm they take a laissez-faire attitude and they more or less allow the situation to dictate what is happening to themselves and to their children. This does not mean they don’t care about the children, but their expectation is that things will work themselves out, and that everything eventually will figure itself out.   Inactive parents  are not necessarily bad parents, and this is not intended as any indictment of their parenting skills,  however they tend to leave too many things to chance, and are often  unable to provide the structures and the needed skills and tools for their children to maximize their success.

So ask yourself, which type of parent am I? 

Or, which type of parent do I want to be?