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Your Guide to Standardized Tests

Why They’re Important and How to Prepare

BY MURIEL VEGA

Whether your child attends a public or independent school, he or she will be required to take some form of standardized test.

A standardized test is one that is administered and graded in a consistent manner, usually given to students across an entire school or school system or even nationally, as opposed to one created by a teacher for a specific class.

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Building Strong Study Habits

Helping Your Child Learn More Effectively

by Susan Flowers

There are many elements that contribute to a student’s educational success, including finding the right school, building a strong relationship with your child’s teachers and even encouraging a child’s participation in extracurricular activities. But one of the most important components of a thriving educational career is the establishment of good study habits.

Educational achievement hinges on parental involvement that evolves to fit the child’s needs, from the first day of first grade to high school graduation and beyond.

Communication with your child is critical, both when establishing a study routine and afterward, to ensure that things go smoothly. That means not only telling a child to do his or her homework but learning their existing study habits in order to help improve them.

“Knowing how your child learns is the key to providing support,” says Joye Callaway, director of the Academic Resource Center at the Lovett School.

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ART in the Classroom

Exploring the Importance of Art Education

By Cady Schulman

At a time when some educators are obsessed with rankings on standardized tests and many school systems face spending cuts, arts education can be seen as a luxury. But studies have shown that instruction in visual arts, music, theater and other disciplines can promote cognitive abilities, critical thinking and problem-solving skills.

According to the advocacy group Americans for the Arts, arts education stimulates critical thinking, refines cognitive and creative skills and strengthens problem-solving. Participation in arts programs has also been linked with gains in math, reading and other areas, according to the research compendium Critical Links: Learning in the Arts and Student Achievement and Social Development. 

“Research in education is showing us that the creative thought process … [and] the high order of thinking skills we need to be instilling in kids are a fundamental component of their intelligence,” says Kevin Glass, headmaster of Atlanta International School (AIS).

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STEM Education

What it is and why it’s important

By DANIEL BEAUREGARD

As technology continues to expand at a rapid rate, careers in the fields of science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) are among the fastest-growing jobs in the nation. According to the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Economics and Statistics Administration, STEM-related job growth was three times greater than that of non-STEM jobs over the last 10 years. Over the next decade, STEM jobs are expected to grow at an even faster rate as those fields take on an increased importance due to continuing technological advances.

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