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Families across the country are grappling with what to do this Fall for their children. As a specialist in personalized learning, I partner with children and families to develop individualized goals related to academics and socio-emotional learning. Together, we will build a plan for personalized instruction or coaching that is child-centered and sustainable for your family.

In the our first meeting together, we will discuss your child’s strengths, challenges, interests, and affinities. This information will be used to create personalized goals for your child that will inform our plan.

Next, we will decide the frequency and length of our sessions. These sessions can take on a variety of forms, including but not limited to:

  • In-person sessions*
  • Remote/virtual sessions
  • Small-group sessions

*Paul is currently at capacity for in-person sessions. Paul is limiting in-person sessions due to COVID-19.

My Approach

In my book, Reclaiming Personalized Learning, I define personalized experiences as inherently meaningful learning experiences that appeal to an individual’s humanity. When personalizing your child’s learning, I will not simply match them with worksheets or automated programs that provide them with digital content. Instead, I will use open-ended tasks and/or a project-based approach that challenge your child to grapple with complex problems and think critically. I do this for a few reasons.

First of all, we know that students who are able to think on their own are more successful down the road. Too often, schools use worksheets and automated programs unknowingly at the expense of student learning. These tools engender mindless learning, and oftentimes work against our collective goals for learning that’s personal and inherently meaningful to the individual.

Second, matching students with benign worksheets or adaptive technology tools risks chipping away at intrinsic motivation. I believe that, under the right conditions, every child can love learning. Instead of building a plan with externalized incentives, personalizing learning entails building a strong learning relationship and using my knowledge of your child to construct learning experiences that are engaging and appropriately rigorous.

Finally, liberating ourselves from worksheet- or technology-based activities teaches students how to communicate effectively. I’ve worked with countless students now who become more effective communicators of the learning process because they are not confined to multiple choice answers or filling in blanks on a worksheet. To me, work completion does not yield meaningful learning. It is, instead, free thought and open communication with a trusted teacher that makes learning most meaningful.

Accountability

In addition to identifying academic goals for your child, we will create an accountability plan for your child that will detail the work they will complete on their own in between sessions. This may include, but will not necessarily be limited to:

  • Independent Reading
  • Independent Writing Projects/Journaling
  • Math Tasks or Math Games
  • Other Tasks Related to Your Child’s Plan

The accountability plan will be recorded on a calendar or on a weekly planner, depending on the frequency and duration of our personalized learning plan.

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Contact Paul

Please reach out to paul@paulemerich.com to get more information about hourly rates and availability. Availability is limited, and families who cannot find availability in Paul’s current schedule can be added to a waiting list upon request.