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Susan Kruger Winter, M.Ed.

80/20 in the Classroom: How to Change the Way You Work

April 18, 2021

There is a universal rule that governs our lives behind the scenes. It works silently, only observed by those aware of its existence. The people who understand its power spend more of their time living happier lives.   They use this principle to accomplish more in less time. We can see it at work in…

Standardized Tests:
Two Proven Ways to Raise Test Scores

April 11, 2021

Research consistently confirms there are two critical ways to raise test scores on standardized tests: Build “cognitive flexibility” with metacognitive strategies.1 If students don’t have problem-solving strategies for learning content, well… they won’t learn it! Obviously. Teach the curriculum, not “to the test.” Teaching “to the test” –also known as “item teaching”– actually lowers test scores; it…

Teaching Students with Autism: Science that Empowers What Your Heart Already Knows

April 5, 2021

Teaching Students with Autism There’s a very good chance you could teach me a lot about teaching students with autism. You’re in the trenches, working with students every day, So, I’m NOT here to tell you what you “should be doing differently.” Nor am I here to point out “where you’re dropping the ball.” I…

The Challenge of Executive Function:
What’s the Antidote?

March 21, 2021

“Students Greatest Need Is Executive Function!” This year, in the SOAR® Learning Laboratories, we challenged ourselves to discover “What do students in special education need the most?” We interviewed special education educators from across the country, expecting to make a “top ten” list we could narrow down to the “top three things” students need. However, we were stunned when one response came…

The Motivation Circuit: How Motivation Works

March 14, 2021

The Motivation Circuit Video Transcription “Motivation” is the term we use to describe a power surge from the emotional region of the brain. When the emotional region of your brain is happy, comfortable, and engaged, it makes a lot of brain chemicals. This provides a hefty power boost the rest of the brain, making learning…

The Learning Value of Digital Media: Audiobooks, Videos, & Video Games

February 21, 2021

We are both educators, but you can stick a fork in us… we’re DONE! We’ve always said that we could never “homeschool” our own children. Having to do it in global shut-down, while managing growing demands of our “day job,” is simply too much! So, we’ve scaled back. Waaaaaay back. All those social media memes……

How to Help Your Child’s Test Anxiety

January 10, 2021

Test anxiety is very common.  However, I’ve come to realize that the more we, as parents, try to help our children alleviate that anxiety, we often add to it… accidentally, of course. Jim, a parent using SOAR, recently contacted us with a great question about how he can best help his child. I thought our conversation…

New Year. New Semester. New Homework Solutions.

January 3, 2021

The start of a new year means it’s the perfect time for a new outlook on homework: homework systems! As a parent or a teacher, you know just how much of an energy drain (to put it lightly) homework can be for your students (and you)! Let’s start from the top. The first question you…

How I Almost Forgot the Meaning of Thanksgiving…

November 22, 2020

I sent this out last Thanksgiving of 2019, in the midst of a lot of chaos. We received so many wonderful comments, I thought it would be worth sharing again. Although I’m very blessed to be hosting 40+ family members at my home for Thanksgiving, I almost forgot to be thankful… The plan was to move…

From Failing to 4.0

November 8, 2020

I struggled in school. From kindergarten thru 12th grade, I struggled to earn mediocre grades. I would study for hours…then fail a test. Over time, I had no motivation to study. “Why should I bother?” I wondered. As I entered college, I knew something would have to change. Based on my track-record, I would never…

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