Since 1995, Best in Class Education Center's instructors have aided students of all ages—from pre-K tots to high school seniors—in their academic journeys. They calibrate small-group and private math and English lessons that push each student at an individualized pace, helping struggling students catch up to speed or edifying advanced pupils seeking more of a challenge. The tutors give homework assignments for the kids to work on throughout the week, as well as administer weekly tests to assess their progress.
In addition to boosting success in current classes, the staff helps older students ready themselves for post-secondary schooling with SAT prep classes and college admission workshops, which help applicants decide on the right place, craft an impressive personal statement, and shimmy into their dream school's mascot costume before campus visits.
Dirk Dahl discovered the joy of ceramics in high school when his artistic nature immediately took to the elegant accidents and random, dramatic shapes even a beginner could coax from clay. Ceramics became the bread and butter of his long artistic career, but—like many artists—he found his studio confining, and sought a way to interact with more people. That's when he decided to start teaching, an exercise that compelled him to create Dahl Arts Ceramic Studio as a way to introduce people to his beloved ceramic arts.
"Every time I teach a class or workshop, I learn something," remarks Dirk. Watching his students experiment for the first time or hundredth time in one of his many classes or workshops inspires the sculptor to experiment in his own work, from sculpting faces into pottery to reassembling the broken shards of old pieces into Frankenstein's flatware. The results have landed his work in international juried and invitation exhibitions and even allowed him to open his own personal gallery in Santa Monica, California.
Joe Lavin, a licensed massage therapist, and Wendy Lavin, a licensed physical therapist, combined their anatomical knowledge to develop the Power of Touch Workshop. The aim of the couples-focused workshop is to foster a lifelong affinity for massage, letting participants both practice massage techniques and experience massage benefits at the hands of their partner. With a low student-to-teacher ratio, sessions promise adequate individual attention and an intimate environment in which to knead away knots and loosen spines. After the workshop, students not only come away with a deeper appreciation for massage and joints looser than a broken door handle, but they also receive lifetime access to Power of Touch’s alumni area, a network of massage resources that includes videos, articles, and additional workshops.
The staff members at Sylvan Learning's numerous study facilities understand that each child learns differently. Therefore, they don't try to implement a uniform tutoring system; instead, they design custom lesson programs based on the results of standardized testing, diagnostic tools, and one-on-one interviews.
Tutors work with students from kindergarten through grade 12, illuminating topics ranging from basic reading and writing to remembering complex algebraic formulas without having them tattooed on your chest. Many of Sylvan's instructors work in local schools, so they are intimately familiar with common curricula and understand how to gear lessons toward optimal results.
In 2011, a group of firefighters founded Red Emergency Prevention Services to keep local homes and families safe with emergency training and disaster prevention services. On certain days, the group’s off-duty firefighters lead CPR certification classes with responsive electronic dummies to help people of all ages learn how to save lives. They also contribute to the community by gathering canned goods for local food banks. Though that may seem separate from their other missions, these efforts help bolster community preparedness during disasters great and small. One-on-one, the team also conducts safety reviews in neighborhood homes and evaluates them on their fire and emergency preparedness. During those sessions, they check the readiness of smoke alarms, furnaces, and play kitchen sets, teach people how to turn off their gas and water during an emergency, and promote fire safety by cleaning out dryer vents.
Doug Landreth and David Volkamer each spent 25 years as professional photographers and visual artists., As David designed ads for Fortune 500 companies, Doug filled magazines with his stunning images. Just because they experienced success doesn’t mean they became content, though—as the technology in their fields advanced, so too did their techniques. Today, this duo of ever-evolving shutterbugs share their hard-won lessons in tutorials, seminars, and classes through their joint venture, Photomorphis. Together, they help students master composition and depth of field, giving them the tools to make even iPhone shots look stellar. They also explain how to enhance such photos with the use of textures and Photoshop techniques, such as creating subtle warmth images or giving your baby laser eyes.