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LightPaintMe1

"The strategies I learned from Ari have played a major role in my success as a college engineering student and while working in industry. He has been a huge help in guiding me in my career.”

-Gabe • Butte College

LightPaintMe2

"Ari read who I was, and helped me according to my strengths and difficulties. He became a friend that helped me realize my potential in a world where I couldn't always see it."

-Anjelica • SF State

Inspirational Services:


For students who are struggling in school (or in life more generally), the optimal solution often involves more than simply raising their test scores. To assist students in achieving their full potential, the MOST helpful thing is to light the flame of their inspiration, so that learning becomes a delight rather than a pointless obligation. The services described here have been developed, over two decades, to accomplish this goal. They can all be woven into academic tutoring sessions or explored independently.

Life-Coaching

Helping students to discover their personal dreams, and walk confidently (and efficiently) towards them.

Giving students a personal and persuasive reason to care about learning.

Connecting learning to those passions, to make education a joyful privilege rather than a meaningless chore.

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For most of my students whose academic performance is not commensurate with their abilities, the problem is usually that they are not able to motivate themselves to learn things that have no obvious relevance to their lives. In my two decades of tutoring, I have found that neither rewarding or punishing these students into caring about irrelevant material works. Neither carrots nor sticks, no matter how big, are effective tools.

What these students need is a reason to care about learning. In almost all cases, that reason is the deeply-felt understanding that learning can make their own personal dreams come true. For this to work, however, students must know what their personal dream is. Unfortunately, in the lives of most young people, there is no time or space to explore the question of what really inspires them, and how they might build a life around that inspiration. My life-coaching work addresses this profound need. For intelligent but apathetic students, this is enormously important and effective work; in fact, it's often the only thing that really works. 

Mentoring

Helping young people to navigate the mine field of adolescence with awareness & self-confidence.

Being an ally, a compassionate advocate, a trusted adviser, and an unbiased outside perspective.

Assisting students in developing emotional intelligence, and a deeper knowledge of who they are and what they need to be happy and whole.

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As we all know, adolescence can very often be a confusing and challenging time. In many cases, the difficulties that teens experience outside the classroom (with dating, social pressure, drugs-alcohol, stress about school etc) very often lead to poor decision-making, poor self-esteem, poor performance in school, and general unhappiness. For students struggling in this way, academic tutoring by itself is often only part of the answer, and mentoring is extremely helpful.

Curiosity-Driven Learning

Empowering students to discover and pursue their own innate curiosity.

Allowing students' interests, rather than tests, to guide the learning process.

Assisting young people in developing expertise and mastery in subjects that actually matter to them.

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For students who need a dose of inspiration, I have found that the best thing is often to let their innate curiosity guide their learning. Allowing young people to direct their own learning is far more engaging, rich, and rewarding than the traditional classroom experience. As we all know from our own lives, we learn so much more effectively when we are genuinely curious, rather than forced into learning.

For some students, and especially those that are over-committed, this enrichment can happen within a normal tutoring session. I always make sure that we have at least ten minutes at the end of a lesson to discuss subjects that are of particular interest to my student.

For students with more time, I offer sessions that are completely focused on igniting and pursuing their fascination. In the past, I have worked with students whose curiosity propelled them to dive into one particular subject, such as architecture, web design, or photography. In other cases, I have helped students design a cross-disciplinary curriculum organized around a theme of particular interest to them. Over the years, I’ve worked with students who chose to explore topics as diverse as ‘money’, ‘love’, ‘fossil fuels’, and ‘stars’. This approach of creating curricula organized by theme rather than segregated subject matter provides students with a far richer perspective on their world than the traditional high school class. To learn more about this approach, click here.

Art+Tech

Integrating rigorous analytic thinking and creative self-expression.

Developing skills that are both personally empowering and also highly marketable.

Allowing young people to be creators of media content rather than passive consumers of it.

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Because I have been utterly fascinated by visual art-making tools for over three decades, I have developed mastery in both traditional and digital media. As a result, I can expertly guide students through a process that integrates technological education and self-expression. In addition to the obvious benefits of providing young people with powerful tools for expressing themselves, these courses also offer students extremely practical skills. Knowing how to build websites, or design logos, is both personally empowering and also highly marketable. As we all know, this arena is where many of the coming decade's jobs are going to be.

Thankfully, young people have absolutely no trouble appreciating the relevance (both personal and professional) of these skills, and so they LOVE learning them. For many, it's a powerful antidote to the pulling-teeth experience they so often have in school. Additionally, this area of study is so broad that each child can find his/her own particular passion/area of expertise. In the past, I've helped students learn about topics as different as: Website Design, Blog Writing, 2D and 3D Animation, Object-Oriented Programming, Video Production, Photography, Game Design, Digital Painting, and Special Effects Production.

All of these enrichment curricula can be offered both individually and to small groups, and both as set-length courses and as ongoing, open-ended explorations. In every case, we will begin by exploring what most inspires your child's natural curiosity. After that, we will create learning goals and commitments based on his/her schedule, needs, and desires.

 

What Students Say:

Ari gave me confidence and ensured me that I could reach my potential if I put in the necessary work.

- Jack

UC Berkeley

What Parents Say:

Ari is truly a brilliant tutor. Our son has complex learning differences, and until we found Ari, he struggled with all his high school classes. Ari quickly discerned how to teach to his strengths. Ari never gave answers, but asked thought-provoking questions that encouraged our son to arrive at the answers himself.

- Anna

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