Academic ownership isn’t just being in control of what is expected: it’s owning the learning yourself

Today we are featuring a student who came to us for our Summer Mini-classes program as a high performing middle schooler whose parents just wanted her to keep busy and stay focused on academics.

This student is super smart and engaged and very willing to learn. However, her approach to lessons was literal and not critical of the material or the lesson (critical meaning not disparaging but thoughtful). In other words, she has succeeded in school by following instructions and doing what is expected — but at the expense of critical thought.

Starting with some classical tests (Plato, Cicero) we engaged in a discussion of the meaning of words and phrases. What does a word mean? How is it most effectively used? What makes for impactful writing and critical reading?

From there we reviewed modern essays and essays of our own — student and teacher! On that one, she was fantastic, addressing the teacher’s own writing with detached, intellectual and powerful analysis.

Where she at first hesitated to opine or critique material, by the end of our summer classes she had become an independent, discerning critic.

It was liberating for her to feel empowered to be an agent in the material and not just to follow what the teacher expects — or, worse, what she thinks the teacher wants her to say.

Our goal is to provide the highest quality, practical language arts classes, tutoring and academic support.

We have been providing affordable and effective online learning since 2012. Review and Sign up for courses here:

A+ Club Online Summer Classes and Academic Enrichment

from LLC, Arlington, VA

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