The staff members at Sylvan Learning's numerous centers 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 a skills assessment using diagnostic tools and one-on-one interviews.
Tutors work with students from pre-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. Camps and after-school and summer classes can ready high-schoolers for the rigors of the ACT or the SAT, or they can help students to wow college-admissions officers with their superior essay-writing skills.
Medical Career Specialists’ team of instructors has one mission: to prepare students for medical-certification tests and future careers, all in one week or less. The nine different medical programs, which begin every week on Saturday, train students in a variety of professions, from EKG technician to medical-lab assistant. Within five days, students can learn about the complexities and procedures required of a surgical technician, or train to become a certified pharmacy technician. Additionally, the center also provides CPR and first-aid classes.
Children are best equipped to develop analytical skills for current and future learning between the formative ages of 3.5 and 14. That's why Best Brains sets students off on the right foot by offering focused courses in subjects such as math, English, abacus, and general knowledge. Certified teachers help students develop skills in writing, grammar, critical thinking word problems, and basic computational math, using an abacus counting tool to help develop spatial memory.
"Our brain is designed to realize what we wish, without any minor errors," says Dahn Yoga founder Ilchi Lee, "If you want success, it will create success. If you want happiness or health, it will create them. Anything is possible, as long as negative thoughts and emotions don't interfere." To make this challenging, yet hopeful philosophy accessible to all, Lee combined the Eastern concept of chi energy with his own brain-management system, developing a distinctive program that unlocks inner peace and sweeps up brain clutter caused by the daily stress of always having to find Waldo. Warm-up yoga maneuvers awaken muscles before 30–40 minutes of breathing, stretching, core practice, and meditation—including a signature brain-wave vibration technique that aims to calibrate mental and physical energies. Cool-down exercises ease the body back into quotidian functionality before a 10-minute teatime invites socialization among participants while bolstering pinkie endurance. Dahn Yoga is also taught at independently owned and operated franchises called Body & Brain Yoga.
In 2007, Pace Beattie had an inkling that his life was about to change. He had discovered hot yoga—a discipline that integrates meditation with rigorous exercise—and resolved to pursue it as his vocation. He saw this as a long-term vision; something he would do after retiring from finance and moving back to his hometown of Greenville.
Then, everything changed: In the eight weeks that bridged 2008 and 2009, he lost his job and his mother passed away. In the aftermath, he scrutinized his life and realized: The time is now. Pace enrolled in workshops and conferences, completing levels I and II of the Baron Baptiste teacher-training program. He moved to Greenville, recruited a team of highly specialized teachers, and opened Southern Om.
Today, having boldly charted his own path, Pace equips others to do the same. He fosters self-discovery through two styles of hot yoga: Southern 26 and Southern Flow, a form of power yoga in which students sweat out sweet tea. These classes serve beginners and experienced practitioners alike, incorporating modifications that support alignment.
First Class, Inc., is dedicated to short-term educational programs and has been serving up classes to D.C.-area adults for almost 30 years. Directed by Debra Leopold, the center provides a wide variety of classes in a wide variety of categories, so accountants can get in touch with their artistic side and artists can learn to balance their dwindling checkbooks. Each class is two hours long, unless otherwise stated. Learn to make soap, bath salts, and more ($39) for a cost-effective beauty regimen, or take Intro to Professional Voice-Overs ($45) and finally realize a dream of adding narration to Computer Beach Party. Polish your people skills with How to Up Your Charm Quotient ($39), or indulge in a Chocolate Tasting with a Professional Chocolatier ($49). Online classes ($129 each) let potential pilgrims progress toward goals from the comfort of home, covering a range of topics from the ins and outs of grant writing to conversational French.
Manhattan Elite Prep's staff of teachers and consultants carries firsthand experience navigating the complicated labyrinth of school admissions. Some were students whose high test scores and poignant essays got them into top PhD and Ivy League MBA programs. Some consultants served on admissions committees of coveted schools and know what experience, qualities, and acrobatic feats make student applications stand out. Now, this team of insiders at a firm with more than 10 years of experience pools its knowledge to help students who are serious about acing tests and placing in their top schools. They emphasize efficiency, packing as much information as they can into the time allotted, and exceeding beyond minimum requirements. Courses covering entrance tests teach students to work smarter, ruling out wrong answers and budgeting their time wisely, and essay consultants pare down applications to deliver rich content in a limited word count. Customers may complete classes online or interact in-person with their instructors as well as fellow students.