Huntington Learning Center: Go from homework boss back to parenting
What parent isn’t struggling with online learning?
It’s no secret that over the past nine months, parents—including myself—have struggled with managing online learning. While searching for some ways to support my kids during their continued online (hybrid) learning, I came across Huntington Learning Centers. Here are some insights I learned from my conversation with Bob Mack, an East Avalon Hills resident, who with his wife Lisa Fraser, own the Huntington Learning Center at Glendale.
The first thing I asked Bob was for suggestions on how to keep my kids organized. Our biggest challenge has focused on keeping track of assignments. My kids, especially my son with ADHD, need support on organizing assignments, due dates, and their workload.
Bob immediately knew what I meant, “We provide a lot of that kind of support at Huntington. It’s really about tying up loose ends. We help students organize their virtual environment and put structure around homework, keeping track of assignments, and completing projects.”
Yes! I was happy to hear I was not alone in my struggles. And then there are the homework battles. It’s become increasingly hard to ask my kids to sit still in front of their computers and do homework after they have already spent the whole day sitting still in front of their computers.
“Wouldn’t it be great to be a parent again and not the homework boss?” Bob asked me.
Of course, that would be a dream! Homework hour never goes as planned around here and is the subject of so many unnecessary disagreements that lead to getting N-O-T-H-I-N-G done.
“Our focus is really to help a child build the skills and executive functioning needed to organize and complete their homework on their own. And that takes a lot of time [to teach] and patience.” That is exactly my challenge. How do I get my kids to care about homework on their own—how can I teach them to work independently? Truthfully, I often want to just get it over with and probably help more than I should.
“It really requires a student to gain a deeper understanding of a subject so they can think independently—and that’s what tutoring is all about. Moving the student from ‘trying to figure it out’ to finding a way to connect with any subject and plowing ahead independently.”
“I was spending two to three hours a night helping my daughter with homework.”
In fact, that’s how Bob came to own a Huntington Learning Center to begin with. “I was spending two to three hours a night helping my daughter with homework. I had to do something! I found a Huntington Center and it changed our dynamic so drastically I decided to open a center to give that gift to other families.”
Huntington Learning Center is an accredited education center, meaning the curricula it uses is examined and approved by a board that verifies it meets requirements. All tutoring at Huntington is provided by licensed teachers, many of whom teach for area schools during the day at tutor in the evenings and on weekends.
But I wondered how tutoring is happening right now—given our current circumstances.
Online and In-Person Tutoring
“We do offer online tutoring, but we also still believe in-person face-to-face learning is the best method.” Bob says the majority of tutoring is currently happening in-person, one-on-one at the Center. “We have worked hard to make in-person sessions safe for our students and tutors.” Bob shares they have intentionally spread out workstations, creating more distance between tutoring pairs and added plexiglass dividers to ensure safety.
“One area where we have experienced a surprising success implementing online tutoring is SAT and ACT test prep.” Bob shares two recent successes in which two ACT students, who completed the test prep exclusively online, both increased their scores by more than five points. “We also offer virtual practice SAT and ACT tests,” which is a welcomed resource for high school juniors, “mostly organized through either a school, a club or an athletic organization.”
E-Learning not a complete replacement for in-person
Bob agrees e-learning has significant challenges. “No one believes that e-learning is a feasible and complete replacement for in-person instruction.” Even though less than ideal, it seems e-learning is here to stay for at least the immediate future. While that’s not the answer I want to hear, talking with Bob made me feel a bit better, if not to only reassure myself that this is hard and to learn that we, as parents, have some available resources to help us—and our kids.
Huntington Learning Center
2635 E 62nd Street, Suite 2020
at Glendale Town Center
Indianapolis, IN 46220