1. Support your student through in-person tutoring as both a learning specialist and reading and writing specialist, provide your entire family with resources to help make school a pleasant and exciting experience for everyone, and will direct you to online classes and tutorials that students can access for their entire academic career and beyond.
2. Assess academic skill levels, provide support and remediation, make suggestions about how to best challenge your student, provide strategies to meet the demands of rigor and excellence and help secure proper placement in the right classes and schools.
3. Connect your student to the right academic environments and help families navigate the more challenging parts of school placement.
Ms. Appel puts people on the path to real academic success.
Ms.Appel specializes in reading and writing instruction (from sentence structure to full essays and beyond), executive functioning support and general core subject academic remediation. As a learning specialist, teacher and tutor, she has worked with children who struggle with ADHD, ADD, dyslexia and emotional challenges such as anxiety, depression and addiction.
She supports students and guides families through the school process from grades 4 - University.
She also helps with school placement and navigates the application and interview process, provides preparatory academic instruction and facilitates on-going academic support and remediation as needed.
In addition, she also offers online writing courses for business professionals and adults who want to improve their writing skills.
Many students who are labeled ‘disengaged’, ‘lacking focus’ or ‘bored’ - are often geniuses in their own way and have yet to discover their particular stroke of brilliance. Learning disabilities must be properly recognized and supported. However, everyone has a different learning style and many learning disabilities or challenges are simply unique ways of “being” in the world - how we process, see, hear and feel. Whether we see in color or black and white, or letters are lined up “in order” or not or loud noises bother us, etc… it simply directs us on how to best interact with the “world.” Who is to say what is the “right” way? Is not every precious life worth discovering and celebrating? That is an educators job. Where any chid struggles is never a statement about who they are. We are not our limits. We are not our pathology. We are not our struggles. We are. And we exist within those limits and many struggles are made to be overcome. And then, we are, stronger, more vibrant and more victorious than ever. Many of us have limits people do not see. We all know we fall short in some way. This is not about fake confidence. This is about supporting every child as the masterpiece they were made to be so they can play their own symphony. This is focusing on the “can” instead of the “can’t” while we honor limits. No one is perfect. But everyone is perfectly unique and it is simply unfortunate our education system is not fully equipped to handle that. No system ever has. Systems are built for average. And after 20 years as an educator I have yet to meet an average kid.
While developmental challenges are very real and cannot be ignored at the expense of the child’s comfort and much needed support, run of the mill disengagement or boredom is not a pathology and should not be treated as something to diagnose. A system that caters to the “average” or “standard” is the problem. It is simply not interesting enough for them…whatever that means for that particular child.
You know how you want to lay down and take a nap at the board meeting? They do too. It’s not just adults. Children have taste as well.
So very often tutoring begins with celebrating who your child is exactly as they are, finding out how they learn and process and then teaching them how to access a system that will inevitably make them feel they must “dumb themselves down.” We actually have to challenge them more, not less!
How ironic - all this fuss about a system that is actually below your child’s intelligence level. Oh well, let’s begin anyway. It’s the best we have and there is a way around it and into it.
Once your child knows we are on their side and we understand the true nature of their struggle, you will be amazed by the results, and not only their level of engagement, but their inspired endlessly creative self that emerges. We will also help them recognize each level of mastery they achieve in honoring their skills, applying their newly acquired and integrated knowledge and celebrating their connections. This is what creates lasting confidence. When children can own their own level of mastery, they take their success with them to the next level as confident life-long learners.
Let’s make sure they have the necessary skills, remind them to light the world on fire with their brand of genius and help them go learn about all life has to offer them!