Learning Success 101

KOMO's holistic, skills-based curriculum is anchored in our innovative pedagogy that systematically builds students' core skills through school work. Check out our musings and case studies below to learn more about how we think and approach education.

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You’re doing things for them or with them. For example, are you looking at what they have coming up and making or suggesting to-do lists for them? Are you sitting…

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Next time your kid says they can’t do something, quote them this -  “Stop confusing inexperience with inability” Can’t focus? Can’t get good grades? Can’t feel motivated? Can’t stop procrastinating?…

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I earned over $100,000 in scholarship offers and awards, and I’m going to tell you how. Why? Because a few of you have asked for tips for getting $$ for…

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I recently had the privilege of being a guest speaker in Demir Bentley’s incredible Lifehack Tribe. Demir is a nationally recognized productivity coach whose work has been featured in Forbes,…

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So for the last year, members of my team and some students have been adamant that I get on TikTok.  As a working professional specializing in learning and academics, not…

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If I had a dime for every time a student used the word ‘bored’ or ‘boring’ to explain/justify/excuse why they don’t like a class or teacher or can’t focus or…

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If your kid  1. Learns how to use at least one tool And 2. Practices that tool for a few days They will start feeling and doing better.  There’s no…

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School was rough for Katie. The word she uses to describe how it is ‘torturous.’ She was stressed, depressed and anxious all the time. She’d wake up and dread school,…

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A lot of students have a hard time focusing on school work. They spend hours 'trying' to do work but in reality get maybe only a half hour of actual…

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I recently read something along the lines of: Each of us is a brilliant genius when we have the right tools, and a clumsy fool with the wrong ones.  This…

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I’ve written a lot about one of the top mistakes we see the best-intentioned parents make over and over again:  Doing stuff for their kid that their kid is capable…

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I shared Jen’s story in our last blog post, and she pointed out the two approaches that most parents end up taking (if you haven’t yet, check her full story…

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Jen’s son Cam always got As and Bs. He didn’t put in much effort. He got into a good college. Everything was going well until the realities of college vs.…

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If your kid is struggling but doesn’t want help, or thinks they can’t be helped, this is for you. Jen is an incredible Mom whose college son Cam was really…

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For most of you, school is either over or almost over. Around this time of year, I see families go in one of two directions: Give up and get by…

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I recently read something along the lines of: Each of us is a brilliant genius when we have the right tools, and a clumsy fool with the wrong ones.  This…

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Connor is in Grade 8. Like a lot of middle schoolers, he didn’t really want to be at school outside of seeing his friends (“I only liked lunch and recess”)…

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Some of the most frustrated parents I speak with are teachers. They tell me they feel extra bad because they have no issue supporting their students in the classroom yet…

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If you’re like most parents we talk to, you want your kid to feel smart and capable, to like school and love learning and to be able to self-motivate…and you’re…

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Good grades are awesome and all, but some of our favorite outcomes of skill-building actually have nothing to do with academics: Teens waking themselves up in the morning (no more…

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A couple of days ago I noted that if your kid is struggling, and especially if you feel like you’ve tried everything, I can about promise you there’s a skills…

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A lot of teens wish school were easier. They take shortcuts, do the bare minimum, and procrastinate. When they struggle or get low grades, some blame teachers (“she doesn’t teach…

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Last week, I spoke with a lot of families about their Easter plans, which all revolved around family time and food and fun (tbh I got a tiny bit jealous,…

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A lot of people think if they’re smart, they’ll succeed.  This is untrue. Equating smarts with success sabotages perfectly capable teens. It fuels toxic, false beliefs and behaviors that cause…

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The other day we talked about tutoring vs. learning how to learn, and got some great questions. The big thing to understand is that tutoring focuses on subjects; it assumes…

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Yesterday, I shared Kerrin’s story (here), whose 14 year old son recently learned how to learn and reaped awesome benefits: more accountability, higher grades, more relaxed etc. Kerrin too enjoyed…

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I’m gonna say something that might ruffle some feathers: I don’t think “good” grades are...well, good. Or at least, they’re not the be-all and end-all of academic success. Here’s what…

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You know, there’s a common (mis)conception about students, especially teenagers. They’re “lazy”. They “hate hard work”. They “hate learning.” If you look at the way so many students treat school,…

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Most kids procrastinate, especially when it comes to school. Honestly, for the most part, I don’t blame them. They’re not procrastinating because they want to or because it makes them…

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Imagine this: You ask your teen how their test went, and they tell you.  You ask what they have for homework - are they on top of it? - and…

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I’m fielding a lot of questions from parents about whether learning how to learn and skill-building through school work (our expertise) are what they need. Here’s the truth: if your…

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Your teen might tell you that they don’t feel like doing their homework, that it’s boring or dumb, they'll never have to use it, the teacher doesn't teach in a…

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At the start of every call with the parents and students I work with (and my own team), I kick off with wins. A win can be anything, big or…

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With the summer rolling in, I've been thinking a lot about our students (as always!). I've been thinking about how they are potentially at risk of facing into months of…

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All struggles in school are NOT created equal! When students are learning the MOST, they often feel like they're learning the least. How can this be? First things first: Active…

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Kids are taught to think small. It's a fact. School focuses on the right answer, the next quiz, the big assignment. I’ve seen so many students with a genuine interest…

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It's easy to get overwhelmed or confused with what you can do to best support your child under normal circumstances. These last few days especially, I’ve been hearing a lot…

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“I just want to support my child the best I can.” This is something I hear from every (caring) parent, x10 since school closures. A common follow-up statement: “I know…

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Reminder: bad days are OK. 'Bad days' are normal and happen to everyone. Especially right now when all seems incredibly bleak. Some kids need to hear this more than others,…

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You guys! I just came across this article, and I have to share because it's not very often I come across teachers who candidly admit the truth that teachers teach…

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Are your kids among the majority of students that are not engaged? The type of kid who really doesn’t want to do their school work? Do you find yourself constantly…

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I've recently read an article on the “death” of the average student. Not only is there no room for mediocrity in our current “high-achiever” climate, kids are literally dying in…

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Why is focusing on core skills essential to transforming how your kids "do" school? Isn't it better to target specific classes they're struggling with? Surely the most important thing in…

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Have you ever thought or been told that because your kids have a learning difference, school will just always be a struggle? Let me dispel you of this myth. We’ve…

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Being thrown into the deep end of online learning has been a huge upheaval for most of you students. Perhaps you’re bored with your online school. Maybe you’re tuned out.…

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https://youtu.be/9w-VXfNfgkM?t=1

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Educational / curriculum based:  1.PBS Learning Media: a lot of videos, interactive content, and supporting documents. You can browse content according to grade level and national and/or state standards. https://www.pbslearningmedia.org/…

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“Know thyself” - AristotleMeta: showing or suggesting an explicit awareness of itself Cognition: the process of thinkingMetacognition: awareness of one’s own thought processes Metacognition (MC) is the key to building better…

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“To do two things at once is to do neither.” – Publius Syrus. Today we’re talking about how we allocate our most valuable resource: time. We know how critical thinking…

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"You can't always control the wind, but you can control your sails."While executive functioning (EF) has gained increasing attention in the mainstream over the last few years, it’s still not…

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I recently read a prescient article on how being a lifelong learner is no longer something we should hope our kids will be. Interestingly, it's something that they will need to…

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One of our students Colleen had a goal. I was delighted to hear recently that she was accepted to her dream school for her dream career. She took the time…

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Clarity is confidence. Routine is key. If your kids don’t have a crystal clear understanding of what exactly they need to do to stay on top of school, they will…

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Do you get concerned when your kids find English or Math or Science easy? If not, you’re in good company. If so, you’re one of the rare few.  Seldom do…

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If your kid is like most teens we work with, they don’t love homework. They think it’s boring or hard or irrelevant. It’s something they have to do, a chore to get…

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Have you ever told your kids not to compare themselves to how other kids in their classes are doing? That the only competition that matters is with themselves? If so,…

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I love Shakespeare. Even as a student. As my classmates loudly suffered through Othello, Macbeth, Romeo & Juliet, Shakespeare's language to me felt magical and I enjoyed piecing together what…

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We speak with a lot of parents about some of the biggest challenges they face. What is preventing their kids from genuinely learning - not just going through the motions…

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“Our world is created through everyday talk” The better we are at communicating, the better we are at: ✅ Understanding and maintaining our own personal well-being ✅ Enjoying a strong…

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Critical thinking is the mother of all skills for a couple of reasons. First, it leads to better life outcomes. Personal, professional, health, income, safety - you name it, and…

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Being "smart" doesn't hurt, except when we assume that higher levels of intelligence results in better life outcomes in school, at work and for personal well-being. Unlike intelligence, which several…

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A lot of kids feel a sense of shame when they need help with school. There’s a stigma around getting help that stems largely from twin toxic myths: - Only…

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Have you ever been told that if you want to help your kids do better in a subject they’re struggling with, you need to get them some tutoring for that…

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When our kids are struggling and we realize we’re not the best person to help them, we often turn to tutors. The problem is that traditional tutoring isn't just a…

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I want to talk about why children struggle with school. The best way we can help them thrive is by understanding the root cause of their struggles in the first…

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PROCRASTINATION: "voluntary delay of an intended action despite knowing that you'll be worse off for the delay." The vast majority of kids procrastinate, especially when it comes to school. And…

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We teach your child how to learn so that they can hit their academic goals while building the skills they need to thrive in school and as self-motivated, resourceful young adults in college and their career.

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