At After School University, we believe that children are capable of taking on more than many people expect. That is why we talk about an “Early Start” as being one of our pillars.
A struggling student who comes to us as a high-school senior may not be in position to learn advanced concepts before graduation. But even that student can get early exposure to the kind of expectations and responsibility that await in college.
And for those who do come to us earlier in their academic career, we work closely with them and their families to carve out a path toward excellence in whatever area(s) they choose.
Starting Early in Math
In its most recent study, the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) found that among 15-year-olds in 34 developed countries, American students ranked 26th in math. Asian Pacific and European countries made up the entire Top 10.
So perhaps we shouldn’t be surprised that American students are introduced to algebra and geometry one to two years after their international peers are. By the end of high school, even those in AP math courses are often two to three years behind average students in Asia or Europe.
Starting Early in Science
In science, PISA rated the U.S. at No. 21 of 34 developed countries. That’s slightly better than in math — but in some ways, the differences are even more pronounced. Asian and European countries introduce physics as a separate discipline in sixth grade; chemistry in seventh; and computer programming in eighth. In American schools, physics and computer programming are usually electives, and neither they nor chemistry is introduced until high school.
At a minimum, kids in other countries get four to five years more of solid science education than our kids.
Starting Early in English
Developing love and ability for reading as early as possible, ensures life-long success of our children. Kids reading at 4 years should not be an exception. Type of reading and writing that your kids experience, also matters.
With a solid foundation, our children can do more. Once they have the right tools, habits and mindset, middle-school and high-school students who are struggling today can reach — and then exceed — grade level.