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Blog Archives - Synap2It Learning Development Center

When Tutoring is not Enough

Transition is a fact of life.  In the world of education it is a rite of passage.  It's also the point where many students start to struggle. Parents often start considering tutoring at this point, but what if this doesn't help? What if you're like many of the parents and students I've seen that are frustrated because they feel like they've tried everything and it isn't working? What happens when tutoring is not enough?

Transitions in School

As a student starts school, they begin in the sheltering, nurturing early childhood stage (generally through second grade). Starting in 3rd grade students begin the transition into the older elementary stage where our learning is quantified and ranked by more external means (standardized testing), yet still with a degree of nurturing.  It’s at this point that students, parents, teachers and the system in general begin to feel more pressure.

Just as we all begin to understand the system of Elementary School, Middle School and adolescence begins to loom.  School becomes more demanding and self directed. More independence, organization and self discipline are required. 

This is the stage that many parents seem to dread the most and where students tend to start having difficulties. How do we help our students accomplish successful transitions in school during the busy lives we find ourselves living especially when interventions like tutoring aren't working?

Understanding Gap

Each phase of school requires a basis, a well-developed understanding of previously taught concepts as well as organization and self discipline.  In order to transition from one level to the next successfully, students must have key concepts and physical abilities in place so that the newly presented curriculum makes sense.  

If a student is still in the process of making sense of a concept and the class moves on to the next step, it creates an understanding level gap that eventually can build on itself and eventually becomes too great to cross.  

Frustration and even failure can set in, even in otherwise capable learners.

Red Flags and Potholes to Learning 

When I hear a student say, “I really just don’t like to read,” a huge red flag comes up for me.  “Not liking to read”  may be caused by lack of the previously mentioned physical stamina for learning issue.  Not liking to read is self-perpetuating. 

For example, a student might have a lack of vocabulary understanding from not reading rich and interesting literature and therefore, a vocabulary concept deficit develops not necessarily a reading difficulty.

A student may not be able to grasp the material presented because lack of vocabulary has created a comprehension pothole on their road to reading. It’s a vicious circle! 

Unfortunately, vocabulary drills or writing and memorizing definitions are not always pathways to better vocabulary!

Discovering the Missing Pieces

At Synap2it! Learning Center we are experts at discovering the missing pieces, training them, and setting students back on the path of success! We can understand and impact learning in ways that no amount of conventional tutoring can.

We would love to talk with you more about your child’s specific situation and help you come up with a plan to address the root causes of the struggles they’re having in school.

Whether it’s reading, math, writing, problem solving, or other academic concerns, we’re here to help! Contact us here to learn more and schedule a free consultation.

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Creating Success in School and Beyond

People have often asked me how our students are able to see such long-lasting and dramatic improvements in school when nothing else has worked.  In today's post, I want to share with you a story about just that.  

My sincere desire is that hearing this story will give you hope for your own student. Hope that there actually is something you can do that will not only help them succeed in school, but also build their confidence and realize their full potential!

If you'd like to read more about how our program differs from traditional tutoring programs be sure and check out my previous posts here and here.

Now on to Mike's story...

Mike's Story

When a parent comes to me and asks me if I can help their child with math, I often think about Mike.  

Mike came to me at midterm of his freshman year in High School. After two years of struggling with math in Middle School (during which he had MANY tutoring sessions) he was still doing very poorly.  After our initial evaluation, we discovered that he was weak in several key concept ability areas that involved mathematics.  No surprise there. 

However, what was surprising is that there were several concept areas of reading that were weak as well. Oh, he could read okay, just not as easily as he should. As a result, he didn’t like to read, therefore his vocabulary wasn’t as good as it could be.  Several other reading areas that involved upper level comprehension were being affected.  

No longer just "getting by"

Upon screening for sensory integration and focusing skills, we discovered some of the culprits.  His eyes were not sweeping smoothly left to right and they didn’t land with ease on a target. Furthermore, his eyes were unable to focus tightly on small numbers or letters for an extended period of time without experiencing fatigue.  When this happened he would become distracted, losing his train of thought and then frustration would set in.

A couple of months into his program he commented that it seemed like his reading was becoming easier.  A couple of months later math began to come around. Now he was ready to grasp the concepts!  

Much to his credit, he even decided to repeat a math course rather than electing to just do summer school, saying he really needed to understand the material, not just “get by.”  

We have seen great improvement. (He has an A so far!) Needless to say his self confidence has greatly improved. He now sees himself as someone who is in charge of his learning!

Here’s what his mom wrote:

“My son is just finishing the program with amazing results. After two years in Middle School, doing very poorly in Math, I was very frustrated. He had several tutors and programs and he never seemed inspired by them. Since he started at Synap2it, we have nothing but good results. The patience, caring and confidence building are superior. My son has flourished under this program.Thank you again!”

-Dripping Springs parent

The Ultimate Reward


As you can see, taking the time to evaluate the "root cause" of the learning difficulty and taking time to build up the concepts, vision, and motor-sensory integration skills needed yields incredible results! 


Instead of just saying, "I'm just not good at _________" and accepting this as their lot in life, students are able to see real, long-lasting improvement! 


Helping students develop this kind of confidence, ownership over their life-long learning, and realize their full potential is, for me, one of the greatest rewards this program has to offer. 


If you've tried everything else and are ready for lasting change, I'd love to talk with you and see how we can help! Click here to schedule a free consultation!

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Finding the Right Career: A Different Approach

Do you have a student wondering what career they should pursue?  Are you helping a student apply for colleges and/or selecting a major, but they're just not sure what to pick?

Or maybe you're at a point in your own career where you're wondering if the career you're in is one for which you are most suited.  Maybe you're dissatisfied with your current career or job and looking for like a change.

If any of these scenarios sound like you, we have good news! Synap2it! Learning Center has the tools you need to help you make successful career choices! 

A Different Approach

Traditional career preparation or career counseling in schools typically involves three things: 

  • interest
  • skills
  • opportunities

However, while the strongest emphasis is typically placed on interest, we add one more component to the discussion: learning abilities.

Learning Abilities and Career Placement

The learning abilities we assess using our program include: Comprehension, Memory, Problem Solving, Evaluation & Creativity. We also evaluate a student's figural, semantic, and symbolic abilities and determine which of these abilities is highest.

Similarly, over the years we have been able to analyze a large number of occupations in terms of the abilities a person would need in order to excel in them. We have obtained descriptions from government publications and then transcribed the tasks required into abilities defined by the Structure of Intellect system.

This analysis has allowed us to create a set of occupation profiles that includes the abilities needed in order to work in each career choice. We then use in this occupation profile in evaluating a student or adult's career interests and help them find the best fit for their specific ability profile!

Career Counseling and Prep with Synap2it! Learning Center. Here's how we're different

Here's How it Works

Students/individuals take the SOI assessment and have an opportunity to compare their learning abilities profile with the occupational profiles for their career of interest. The comparison indicates how well their current abilities profile fits their unique career choices.

What's even better, is that if a student's assessment shows their abilities are in need of being developed in order to succeed in a certain career, we can work with them to develop those necessary abilities!

Finding the Right Career Fit 

For students, we strongly encourage SOI career counseling during their freshman year of high school rather than waiting until the traditional time of immediately prior to graduation. Although we can absolutely work with students and individuals past this point, we've found that starting early gives us the best results

It might seem premature to begin preparation at the freshman year, but if a student discovers that he/she needs to develop some of their learning abilities in order to successfully pursue their career choices, it is best to have 2-3 years to accomplish this preparation.

Many a career path has been derailed by not having sufficient time to prepare for the learning requirements that the candidate faces in the process of acquiring the skills and knowledge required for the occupation of their choice.

For example, a high school Senior may have an strong interest in becoming an architect, but discovers in college that the engineering aspects of the career are just too demanding for his/her symbolic learning abilities. Unfortunately, at this point, it is probably easier to change majors, so the budding architect is likely to go into something like graphic design – a decision closer to his current learning abilities than his long-standing career interest.

Alternatively, our goal at Synap2it! Learning Center is to help students and individuals develop the abilities they need to realize their passions, dreams and long-standing career interests...not just settle for a second choice.

Take the Next Step

As you can see, the approach we take to career preparation and counseling is different than what you see in most traditional settings. We evaluate, and take into consideration an individual's: 

  • interests
  • skills
  • opportunities
  • AND learning abilities (Comprehension, Memory, Problem Solving, Evaluation & Creativity, Figural, Symbolic, Semantic)

As a result, we are able to match a student/individual with the best career fit for their current abilities AND help them develop any abilities they may need to excel in the profession they choose. 

If you have a student in High School considering what career to pursue, or if you are dissatisfied with your current career path, we'd love to help you come up with a plan! Give us a call to take that next step toward a successful, rewarding career!

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How are we different from tutoring services?

One of the questions that I often get from parents is, “How are you different from tutoring services?” So in this post I want to address some of the main difference between our approach and a traditional tutoring service.

The main difference between the approach we use at Synap2it! Learning Center’s and tutoring services has to do with going deeper to understand the root cause of the difficulty a student is having in school.

Tutoring services can be a wonderful solution if a student is having difficulty understanding the material in the way a teacher is presenting it, or if the student needs the material to be “re-taught” in a way that makes sense to them. However, what if a student needs to develop an underlying ability in order to even take in the material? This is the “root cause” approach we take at our center.

Here’s how our perspective differs from tutoring services:

  • We know that there is more to learning than that which occurs from the neck up. We take a “whole body” approach to learning in order to assess visual, sensory integration, and cognitive abilities and learn how we can help a student build a solid foundation for success in school and beyond.

We screen and assess 27 learning abilities necessary for a student to be successful in areas such as math and reading and have a systematic program to address any challenges identified.

  • We know there is a huge connection between the brain and the body (Sensory Integration). Sometimes, simply aligning the brain and body can make a HUGE difference in a students academic performance.

We screen for brain and body integration and have a program to improve these abilities.

  • We know that weak sensory integration interrupts a person’s ability to attend to information or instruction that is being given. 

We screen and have a program to address brain and body so that a student is more able to take in the information they are taught in the classroom.

  • We know that Functional Vision, in addition to a standard eye exam, is key to a person’s ability to take in visual information and learn. 

We screen for functional vision in order to determine if this could be the cause of difficulties in school. If it is, we have a program to address this and improve these abilities.

  • We know that upwards of eighty per cent of what we learn comes through the visual system.  Sometimes a student isn’t struggling with learning as much as they are with functional visual abilities.

We screen for functional vision and have a program to address issues a student may be having due to weak functional vision.

  • We know not every person learns every concept in the same amount of time or in the same way.  

We assess and create a customized program to address concept challenges and encourage strengthsno cookie cutter programs here! Your child will get exactly what he/she needs to address his/her unique challenges.

  • We know that it is essential to gain complete understanding of concepts upon which school curriculum builds.  

We assess and have a systematic program that goes deeper than traditional tutoring in order to build the skills necessary for a student to be successful in areas such as math, reading, writing, and more!

  • We know that memory skills (of which there are eighteen different kinds), although fundamental to efficient learning, are not taught in school. 

We assess and have a systematic program to address and improve memory for those who need it. This can be a GAME CHANGER for students who have struggled for years.

Lifelong Transformation

In addition to our unique brain + body approach to learning, one of the best things about working with students through this program is that once they’ve completed their program and developed these abilities, they’re done! They won’t have to keep coming back (and spending more and more money) to be “re-trained” or “re-learn” anything. Students will literally have these abilities in place for a LIFETIME.

If you’re ready for a different approach to helping your child succeed in school and beyond, we’d love to talk more!

Click here to learn more about our program.

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Transition is a fact of life.  In the world of education it is a rite of passage.  It's also the point where many students start to struggle. Parents often start considering tutoring at this point, but what if this doesn't help? What if you're like many of the parents and students I've seen that are frustrated because they feel like they've tried everything and it isn't working? What happens when tutoring is not enough?

Transitions in School

As a student starts school, they begin in the sheltering, nurturing early childhood stage (generally through second grade). Starting in 3rd grade students begin the transition into the older elementary stage where our learning is quantified and ranked by more external means (standardized testing), yet still with a degree of nurturing.  It’s at this point that students, parents, teachers and the system in general begin to feel more pressure.

Just as we all begin to understand the system of Elementary School, Middle School and adolescence begins to loom.  School becomes more demanding and self directed. More independence, organization and self discipline are required. 

This is the stage that many parents seem to dread the most and where students tend to start having difficulties. How do we help our students accomplish successful transitions in school during the busy lives we find ourselves living especially when interventions like tutoring aren't working?

Understanding Gap

Each phase of school requires a basis, a well-developed understanding of previously taught concepts as well as organization and self discipline.  In order to transition from one level to the next successfully, students must have key concepts and physical abilities in place so that the newly presented curriculum makes sense.  

If a student is still in the process of making sense of a concept and the class moves on to the next step, it creates an understanding level gap that eventually can build on itself and eventually becomes too great to cross.  

Frustration and even failure can set in, even in otherwise capable learners.

Red Flags and Potholes to Learning 

When I hear a student say, “I really just don’t like to read,” a huge red flag comes up for me.  “Not liking to read”  may be caused by lack of the previously mentioned physical stamina for learning issue.  Not liking to read is self-perpetuating. 

For example, a student might have a lack of vocabulary understanding from not reading rich and interesting literature and therefore, a vocabulary concept deficit develops not necessarily a reading difficulty.

A student may not be able to grasp the material presented because lack of vocabulary has created a comprehension pothole on their road to reading. It’s a vicious circle! 

Unfortunately, vocabulary drills or writing and memorizing definitions are not always pathways to better vocabulary!

Discovering the Missing Pieces

At Synap2it! Learning Center we are experts at discovering the missing pieces, training them, and setting students back on the path of success! We can understand and impact learning in ways that no amount of conventional tutoring can.

We would love to talk with you more about your child’s specific situation and help you come up with a plan to address the root causes of the struggles they’re having in school.

Whether it’s reading, math, writing, problem solving, or other academic concerns, we’re here to help! Contact us here to learn more and schedule a free consultation.

Contact us now!

Transition is a fact of life.  In the world of education it is a rite of passage.  It's also the point where many students start to struggle. Parents often start considering tutoring at this point, but what if this doesn't help? What if you're like many of the parents and students I've seen that are frustrated because they feel like they've tried everything and it isn't working? What happens when tutoring is not enough?

Transitions in School

As a student starts school, they begin in the sheltering, nurturing early childhood stage (generally through second grade). Starting in 3rd grade students begin the transition into the older elementary stage where our learning is quantified and ranked by more external means (standardized testing), yet still with a degree of nurturing.  It’s at this point that students, parents, teachers and the system in general begin to feel more pressure.

Just as we all begin to understand the system of Elementary School, Middle School and adolescence begins to loom.  School becomes more demanding and self directed. More independence, organization and self discipline are required. 

This is the stage that many parents seem to dread the most and where students tend to start having difficulties. How do we help our students accomplish successful transitions in school during the busy lives we find ourselves living especially when interventions like tutoring aren't working?

Understanding Gap

Each phase of school requires a basis, a well-developed understanding of previously taught concepts as well as organization and self discipline.  In order to transition from one level to the next successfully, students must have key concepts and physical abilities in place so that the newly presented curriculum makes sense.  

If a student is still in the process of making sense of a concept and the class moves on to the next step, it creates an understanding level gap that eventually can build on itself and eventually becomes too great to cross.  

Frustration and even failure can set in, even in otherwise capable learners.

Red Flags and Potholes to Learning 

When I hear a student say, “I really just don’t like to read,” a huge red flag comes up for me.  “Not liking to read”  may be caused by lack of the previously mentioned physical stamina for learning issue.  Not liking to read is self-perpetuating. 

For example, a student might have a lack of vocabulary understanding from not reading rich and interesting literature and therefore, a vocabulary concept deficit develops not necessarily a reading difficulty.

A student may not be able to grasp the material presented because lack of vocabulary has created a comprehension pothole on their road to reading. It’s a vicious circle! 

Unfortunately, vocabulary drills or writing and memorizing definitions are not always pathways to better vocabulary!

Discovering the Missing Pieces

At Synap2it! Learning Center we are experts at discovering the missing pieces, training them, and setting students back on the path of success! We can understand and impact learning in ways that no amount of conventional tutoring can.

We would love to talk with you more about your child’s specific situation and help you come up with a plan to address the root causes of the struggles they’re having in school.

Whether it’s reading, math, writing, problem solving, or other academic concerns, we’re here to help! Contact us here to learn more and schedule a free consultation.

CALL NOW!

Transition is a fact of life.  In the world of education it is a rite of passage.  It's also the point where many students start to struggle. Parents often start considering tutoring at this point, but what if this doesn't help? What if you're like many of the parents and students I've seen that are frustrated because they feel like they've tried everything and it isn't working? What happens when tutoring is not enough?

Transitions in School

As a student starts school, they begin in the sheltering, nurturing early childhood stage (generally through second grade). Starting in 3rd grade students begin the transition into the older elementary stage where our learning is quantified and ranked by more external means (standardized testing), yet still with a degree of nurturing.  It’s at this point that students, parents, teachers and the system in general begin to feel more pressure.

Just as we all begin to understand the system of Elementary School, Middle School and adolescence begins to loom.  School becomes more demanding and self directed. More independence, organization and self discipline are required. 

This is the stage that many parents seem to dread the most and where students tend to start having difficulties. How do we help our students accomplish successful transitions in school during the busy lives we find ourselves living especially when interventions like tutoring aren't working?

Understanding Gap

Each phase of school requires a basis, a well-developed understanding of previously taught concepts as well as organization and self discipline.  In order to transition from one level to the next successfully, students must have key concepts and physical abilities in place so that the newly presented curriculum makes sense.  

If a student is still in the process of making sense of a concept and the class moves on to the next step, it creates an understanding level gap that eventually can build on itself and eventually becomes too great to cross.  

Frustration and even failure can set in, even in otherwise capable learners.

Red Flags and Potholes to Learning 

When I hear a student say, “I really just don’t like to read,” a huge red flag comes up for me.  “Not liking to read”  may be caused by lack of the previously mentioned physical stamina for learning issue.  Not liking to read is self-perpetuating. 

For example, a student might have a lack of vocabulary understanding from not reading rich and interesting literature and therefore, a vocabulary concept deficit develops not necessarily a reading difficulty.

A student may not be able to grasp the material presented because lack of vocabulary has created a comprehension pothole on their road to reading. It’s a vicious circle! 

Unfortunately, vocabulary drills or writing and memorizing definitions are not always pathways to better vocabulary!

Discovering the Missing Pieces

At Synap2it! Learning Center we are experts at discovering the missing pieces, training them, and setting students back on the path of success! We can understand and impact learning in ways that no amount of conventional tutoring can.

We would love to talk with you more about your child’s specific situation and help you come up with a plan to address the root causes of the struggles they’re having in school.

Whether it’s reading, math, writing, problem solving, or other academic concerns, we’re here to help! Contact us here to learn more and schedule a free consultation.