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How to Prepare for Online Instruction

Currently, the world is facing some daunting, unpredictable times. World issues and the pandemic are affecting everything, especially the education sector. As schools prepare for online instruction in the fall, here are a few tips to help prepare and settle into the flow of learning at home!

  1. Try to limit technical difficulties.

Some people may be fortunate to purchase a new computer during this time and some may use one they already owned. Either way, it’s crucial that parents ensure that the internet is stable and that the computer can process video conferencing platforms and websites. Students will be heavily dependent on their computers, so this is probably the most important matter to take care of before school begins!

  1. Improve your sleeping schedule.

Some students may have lost a sense of time ever since the quarantine began. When fall comes, try to manage your sleep schedule and wake up earlier than when your class starts. You will have time to plan out your schedule, and this will help you mentally feel like you’re in a classroom instead of your own bedroom. 

  1. Practice video conferencing etiquette.

Teachers will greatly appreciate it when you are polite in the online classroom. Try not to eat during class, as it could distract you and other members of the call, just like in real life. Turn your camera on for your teachers to see, but your microphone off so that the sound is clear for everybody. Looking attentive will help your teachers gauge your understanding of the concepts. These mannerisms will also help you in a professional setting later on.

  1. Take breaks after classes/school.

It may feel frustrating and cramped, sitting in your room for the whole day. Feel free to rest in other living spaces of your home, go on a walk (safely with social distancing measures), eat your favorite snack — anything to help you rest and relax. 

Though online instruction isn’t ideal, it serves to protect students, teachers, and families. We also have online tutoring resources at Acclaim, so check those out for additional academic instruction. We at Acclaim hope that our students can stay safe during these trying times.

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Subjects

Historical Events Your Child Should Know

In elementary schools, children learn the basics of history and social studies. There are a few notable events that young students should understand. History is extremely valuable for elementary students, as they will learn about past events and how to develop their own opinions. Adam Swanson, our terrific tutor, gives his input on specific historical events that children should know:

  1. American Revolution (1775 – 1783)

The American Revolution dramatically shaped our country into what we are today. Starting with the Stamp Act, Americans fought for their freedom from Britain. Students should also be aware of the Boston Tea Party and who Paul Revere is. 

  1. Renaissance (the 1300s – 1600s)

The Renaissance, or “rebirth,” was a period of embracing the arts and culture. Some of the most unique, masterful art pieces derived from this period, which students should see examples of. Additionally, many philosophers shined during this era, writing great literature classics that are still read in higher-level classrooms today.

  1. Ancient Greece (700 – 480 B.C.)

Learning about Ancient Greece is definitely a favorite among young children. Children will wholeheartedly enjoy learning about the Greek gods and goddesses, along with the myths that come with them. 

  1. World War II (1939 – 1945)

One of the more recent, devastating wars, World War II is important for students to learn about. They should learn about the rise and fall of Hitler, the Nazi Party’s ideologies, and tragedies involved with the warfare. Additionally, they should understand the basic relationships between different countries.

Humankind has shaped history in progressive and tragic ways. With students learning these crucial events at a young age, they will succeed in high school because of their strong fundamentals. Though there are many significant events in history, these are Adam’s recommendations for setting a strong base in history. Read more about Adam here, and sign up with us to learn with fantastic tutors like him!

Adam Swanson is our English, History, and Current Events teacher. His students enjoy his energetic teaching style. Adam is known for his preparedness and consistency in checking on his students’ progress.
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What Makes Acclaim Stand Out?

There are tons of tutoring centers around the world — what makes us any different? Acclaim goes above and beyond for our students with our highly talented tutors and caring staff. We have various specialized programs for each student and put great emphasis on tailoring our curriculum.

We value all of our students’ and parents’ schedules. To make matters convenient for our students, we offer both in-person tutoring and online tutoring! This way, students learn from the comfort of their homes. In addition to our in-person services, we can also come to you! Online tutoring can be better than a classroom experience because the students are used to their home environment for studying. We provide convenience, as well as a fine educational experience!

Another wonderful aspect of Acclaim is that we offer tutoring services for everyone. We have classes for elementary, junior high, and high school students. Furthermore, we have test preparation courses for graduate schools, such as the MCAT, GRE, and much more! Acclaim also provides foreign language courses for people of all levels! We have such a wide variety of services to help set one’s educational foundation and nurture it.

Additionally, Acclaim has academic experts available for high school students to help them prepare for college. Our advisors are active in our students’ academic careers — from crafting a portfolio for one’s college application to planning one’s extracurricular activities according to their interests. We like to provide a customized plan for each student and can help answer difficult questions such as how to decide on a major. We have a 100% college acceptance rate for our students, showing how diligently and meticulously our students and staff work together!

Acclaim has test preparation courses for every exam one can think of! For one, we have a high school entrance exam prep to ensure that our students can receive the best education possible. Moreover, we have language classes to prep for the TOEFL exam. Of course, we also have classes on Advanced Placement courses and SAT prep. Acclaim has a tutoring program catered to every student.

We are different from other tutoring centers in that we prioritize a student’s educational experience by providing convenience. With all of our courses and expert staff, we hope to give our students the personalized materials they need to flourish in their academic lives. Sign up with us today to learn something new!

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How to Improve Your SAT Writing Score

Now that we’ve learned ways to improve on the SAT Math Section, we’ll now review tips for the SAT Writing section. The SAT comprises of two sections devoted to examining English abilities: reading comprehension and writing. The Writing section tests on high-level grammar and essay writing. Steve, one of Acclaim’s multi-faceted, talented teachers, provides his insight to help boost your score! 

  1. Review test-taking strategies for SAT Writing.

On each section testing for grammar, Steve says that there is an average of two correct “no error” answers. To ensure the most accurate answers, Steve advises, “Focus on the big three concepts: the consistency in verb tenses, appropriate comma usage, and subject-verb pronoun agreement.” Once you develop a keen eye that can effortlessly spot any errors in these areas, your score will rise considerably.

  1. Maintain conciseness.

Whether it’s regarding your essay or selecting a multiple-choice answer, remember to reduce wordiness. Steve suggests that you remove any repetition throughout your essay. When selecting your answers in the grammar section, it is likely that the shortest phrase is the correct choice. Additionally, shorten overly long sentences in a grammatically precise way that does not change your overall meaning.

  1. Delete cliches in your writing.

Steve recommends that while writing the essay, delete cliches or idiomatic sayings in your paper. “These signify informal language,” Steve says. If you want your grader to know that you’re taking this test seriously, then eliminate casual elements in your writing. Plus, cliches only convey unoriginality, so come up with organic phrasing that amplifies your thesis.

Steve addressed many useful points that are paramount to improving one’s score in the Writing section. If you want more in-depth tips and guidance with this section with tutors like Steve, register today to quickly improve your score! 

Steve Ayala is an AP History, AP Psychology, and SAT English tutor at Acclaim. He is knowledgable on various subjects and is an extremely experienced teacher. 


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School

Why a College Preparatory School is Important

For parents, it can be a tough decision to select a school for their children to attend. This process becomes even trickier when it comes to choosing high schools. Some high schools are marketed as college preparatory schools. Most of these programs require passing an exam before receiving an offer to join. These schools will be valuable for the academically ambitious student, and here are a few reasons why:

  1. Prestigious school reputation.

When looking at college applications, admission counselors can do a double-take because of the name of the high school. These admissions officers know which high schools provide a reputable, college preparatory education. The names of the high school carry a heavyweight on the application, as it reveals how academically disciplined these students are. Additionally, admission counselors view these students as well-prepared for the rigors of university.

  1. Teachers expect more from students.

As part of a college preparatory school, teachers know that the students are held to a higher standard. As such, they adjust the curriculum accordingly. These teachers come from great academic backgrounds and will push their students to do well. They tend to give a classroom experience similar to a university with lectures and expectations for students to take notes.

  1. Friendly competition among peers.

Students of college preparatory schools want to give their all and do the best that they can in their academics. With this, the competitive nature of the school will push students to work hard and learn advanced subject matters. More so than a cutthroat environment, these schools promote healthy ambition and motivation to do well in academia. 

  1. Diverse portfolio of programs available.

College preparatory schools are more likely to offer different programs such as Advanced Placement classes and the International Baccalaureate. Other examples are elective classes specifically focused on STEM material, or programs to help students determine a career pathway. These schools have programs designed to help students have a successful, educated future, making college preparatory schools a desirable choice for students.

College preparatory school can be a huge stepping stone in a student’s academic career. Students will definitely feel wholly prepared for university life and beyond. Fortunately, Acclaim has many top college preparatory schools near our locations in Southern California. Our services include test prep material catered for each prestigious high school to ensure your child admission to these fantastic schools! Register with us to develop your child’s passion for learning.

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Subjects

Which SAT Subject Test is for You?

Certain universities require students to take SAT Subject Tests along with the normal SATs. This is a way for colleges to further gauge what kind of person you are and how you will fit in on campus. However, there are twenty different tests for you to choose from. Here is a list of Acclaim’s trusted advice on narrowing down the selection!

  1. Choose the subjects you’re interested in.

If you take the SAT Subject Test based on topics you enjoy learning about, the exam will be a less stressful process. Brainstorm ideas on your favorite subjects in school, because you will most likely score better on these subjects than others. Additionally, try taking various sample tests to see which one suits you the most. Scoring well on these exams is fairly important for your college application, so choose the tests that you feel that you’ll perform best in!

  1. Take a test in a language you’re confident in.

College Board offers a few SAT Subject Tests on different languages. If you are bilingual and can comfortably speak the languages that are tested on, use your knowledge to take the test! Moreover, if you ever took a language class that you’re enthusiastic about, definitely consider taking that Subject Test. Your fluency in different languages will illustrate to universities that you are passionate about foreign cultures outside of your comfortable domain.

  1. Prepare for an exam within your career pathway.

If you are decided on your major or certain about the career pathway you’d like to pursue, choose the Subject Tests accordingly. For example, if you intend on being in the medical field, take a Biology exam. College admissions counselors will see that you are fervent about the field you are entering and have advanced knowledge regarding the concepts within your desired field. 

  1. Talk to an academic advisor. 

An academic counselor will be able to help you choose which SAT Subject Test would be best for your college application. Acclaim, for one, provides a premier college consulting service. Our staff will be able to guide you with a step-by-step process to shape your portfolio and help you get into your dream college! 

The suite of SAT tests that are required for students to take may overwhelm you. Regardless, following these steps will help you navigate the college application process in a simplistic manner. For even more special guidance catered to your educational needs, sign up with us at Acclaim to receive full benefits and services!

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School

4 Ways to Have a Productive Summer

Summer’s coming, which means that students will have plenty of time after the school year comes to a close. Summer is the perfect time for students to replenish their energy from stressful homework assignments and exams. We at Acclaim have a few ideas of how students of all grade levels can spend their summer so that they can feel productive and revitalized.

  1. Read a lot of books.

Many students can’t seem to find time to read for pleasure because of school. Get back into a wonderful hobby of reading during this upcoming break. Whether one reads a canonical piece of literature or a book from a school’s curated reading list, reading of any kind will improve reading comprehension abilities. In fact, Acclaim has released a top 5 ranking of literature books, which are excellent reads and able to keep students’ minds sharp!

  1. Learn a different language.

Students have the next two or three months to themselves — they might as well use this time to become a more worldly individual. Learning a new language will not only help one’s conversation skills, but they will also understand the historical contexts of that language’s culture. Learning how to speak in different languages come with many benefits, and will enrich one’s summer break.

  1. Sign up for a tutoring program.

In the span of summer break, it’s completely possible to forget how to write an essay or not know which formulas to use to solve specific math problems. Eliminate any need to dust away the cobwebs of the mind by signing up with a tutoring center. This way, students will be kept accountable for maintaining and improving their academics. Acclaim also has a plethora of programs available for students to help them get ahead and learn some new material!

  1. Keep track of your goals with a journal. 

In a journal, write a list of short-term and long-term goals to achieve. Summertime is a perfect opportunity for students to learn more about themselves and what they’re looking for in life. These goals can range from learning new scientific concepts to planning for college and deciding on a major. Our academic experts at Acclaim also provide excellent college consulting services, Students should clear their minds from the previous school year by journaling and defining how they want to advance their educational lives.

Though students may have an empty schedule during the summertime, they can always advance their academic careers. This will also help a student become more self-sufficient, allowing them to take charge of making decisions regarding their education. We at Acclaim hope that everyone has a happy, fulfilling summer!

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Why You Should Learn More Languages

With the age of globalization and technological developments, it is much easier to communicate with people from different parts of the world. Some languages can be difficult to learn, yet all languages are beautiful and have captivating cultures and backgrounds surrounding them. People can make the world a smaller place by learning different languages.

One reason to learn more languages is so that you can become more culturally aware and knowledgable about the history behind a language and nation. Every culture has a valuable past that involves beauty and tragedy, and it is necessary to respect different traditions and heritages. As you learn more about a country’s language and culture, you will become a more worldly, open person, not limited to ethnocentric beliefs.

Through learning different languages, one can learn words and phrases that are untranslatable to English. Some phrases and idioms may not make much sense in English, yet invoke an abstract emotion that is universally familiar to all humans. By understanding these phrases, you will feel closer to the culture, as you can clearly identify and relate to foreign words. In addition, you will feel more accomplished for understanding these complex phrases, as it indicates your improvement in the language. 

As you learn more about the language and culture of a country, one major perk is that you will appreciate different cuisines. Food is an essential part of a culture, so if you can order food (major points if you order it in that language) and understand the significance of it. you are on your way to being a more well-rounded individual. This conveys you as enthusiastic to try new experiences. Another small benefit is that you would learn various methods of cooking, so you can see how different cultures prepare food and compare the methods. 

Most importantly, you will be able to communicate with other people. Whether this means forming new friendships or obtaining a useful skill for a job, learning a new language can help you create meaning with other people. You will be able to bond with someone you would have at one point never been able to communicate with. Learning languages can allow you to listen to others’ life experiences, which you can use to impact your own life. 

Learning languages is an incredible experience that is not limited to simply learning its linguistics, but rather the entire culture that comes along with it. You will be able to understand different views and perspectives of the world — in turn, this will help you become a more empathetic individual. Acclaim offers a variety of foreign languages for you to learn, so contact us today to let us help you broaden your worldview!

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School

How to Survive AP Classes

If you’re taking any AP courses, you’re on track to be noticed by distinguished universities for your efforts. AP stands for Advanced Placement, and these are college-level classes that students can take in high school. Admission counselors see these classes very favorably, and AP courses can eventually benefit you. For one, you wouldn’t have to take these courses once you’re enrolled in a college, and you can save tuition expenses by graduating early! One caveat is that these classes are designed to be challenging, so here are a few ways to help you succeed in these classes:

  1. Complete all of the homework.

Your teacher assigns homework to help you further understand the lesson for the day. Sometimes, you may feel that the work is unnecessary and doesn’t supplement your understanding. Regardless, your homework is a core factor of your grade, so make sure all of your assignments are finished so that you can receive the points for them.

  1. Buy and use a prep book.

Prep books are useful because they offer specific strategies to help you on the actual AP exam. It will inform you very clearly of the time constraints you will have, and give you tips on how to efficiently eliminate wrong answers. Additionally, these books provide some textbook material for you to review before your tests and AP exam, so it will help you obtain a good grade for this class.

  1. Use different notebooks for each AP class you’re taking.

If you’re taking multiple AP classes, it’ll be easier for you to maintain focus if you devote a single notebook for each AP class you’re taking. If you’re taking just one class, take really detailed notes in a manner that will help you, whether that includes different colored pens, highlighters, or sticky notes. It is crucial that you consolidate one notebook for an individual class so that you can learn the material to your fullest potential.

  1. Have a tutor help you.

AP classes are meant to be difficult, and your teachers will expect much more from you because of the level of this class. With that, they will also grade harder on assignments, essays, and tests. Having a tutor who is an expert on the subject will be beneficial to your performance in the class. Your tutors might have also taken an AP course for this class, so they will know exactly how to help you. At Acclaim, we also provide tutoring services for an array of AP courses, and we can support you in achieving a fantastic grade in the class!

  1. Try past AP exams on the subject.

To help you score well on the actual exam in May, make sure to answer some of the sample questions that CollegeBoard provides. They also release exam questions that were actually asked in previous years, so it will give you a good idea of what kind of questions will be presented on the test. This will also help you master the knowledge you need to pass your class with the grade of your dreams!

AP classes are stimulating and challenging, and it is a large step to put your goal of attending a good college into fruition. Another step would be obtaining a good GPA; if you stay motivated and eager to learn as you are now, you can also achieve a 4.0! Sign up for our AP tutoring sessions at Acclaim to succeed in your AP courses and receive our expertise to get you into your dream school!

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School

How to Improve Your Grades in the Middle of the School Year

Every student understands the desperate and helpless feelings one has when they view their grades as subpar. If you feel that you are in this situation, take comfort in the fact that universities always notice improvements in report cards. Most importantly, as you try to improve your grades, you will find the most effective learning method for you! Simply regain the motivation you once had at the start of the school year, and you can undoubtedly raise your grades — no matter what point in the year you are!

  1. Start using a planner.

Planners are extremely useful not only for students but also for most people in the working world. It is a wonderful way for one to organize their tasks and ensure that nothing will get forgotten! With a planner, notate the homework assignments and projects that must be completed, emphasizing their due dates. Additionally, jot down upcoming quizzes and tests so that you can prepare and study for those.

  1. Get closer to your teachers.

Let your instructors know about the specific concepts you are struggling with, as they are there to help. Having a good relationship with your teachers is important, as they can become compassionate towards you and grade more leniently. Remember that all teachers were students once before, so they understand the difficulty of schoolwork.

  1. Do some additional practice with the problems you struggle with.

The best way to improve your understanding of complex concepts is to practice and continually expose yourself to them. For example, try some math problems that were not assigned for homework so you can practice similar problems and master them by test day. This can be applied throughout all subjects, whether you balance various equations for chemistry, or analyze different passages in a book for English.

  1. Talk with an academic counselor.

Academic counselors are the experts on attaining a successful academic life and helping you get into your dream universities. At Acclaim, our counselors and tutors can provide the expertise and necessary material to help give you the top grades. Furthermore, our experts can also give their insight into college consultations if you want to plan ahead with your academic career. They can organize your academic goals and set a plan for you to achieve them.

Improving your grades is always a viable option, even if you feel that you have been sidetracked from your goals. Despite the doubts you may have about your capabilities, a 4.0 GPA is tangible. As you learn more about your learning style, you will definitely raise your GPA and also feel fulfilled with gaining more knowledge in your studies.