The encouraging acting instructors at Drama Kids International mentor both shy and gregarious youth during acting classes that develop creativity and foster confidence. The drama program groups students by age or cereal preferences for acting classes that use an original curriculum to cultivate dialogue development, social skills, and improvisation prowess. Pupils can also partake in performance sessions that stretch from winter to spring as pintsize thespians prepare to put on shows such as Cleanest Town in Texas or The Grasshopper and the Ants. After weeks of preparation, students take the stage and aim for a Tony nomination as they show off their newly acquired ability to cry, laugh, pine, and miraculously survive a high-speed car chase all at the same time. Each lesson is carefully planned so that acting apprentices can enroll at any time and never repeat a lesson.
American Kempo Karate Academy founder Mark DiNino is an eighth-degree black belt—and a father. In fact, three of his own children train at the academy, meaning the South Shore native shares many of the same hopes and concerns as other parents of AKKA students. But he also understands the benefits children can reap from the academy's program, which since 1995 has improved fitness and increased self-confidence, discipline, and concentration. Of course, kids aren't the only one's who can benefit from a boost in self-esteem, which is why AKKA also offers an adult program, where grownups can achieve similar gains and release stress brought on by their job or lack of homework.
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.
Only a handful of years after graduating from art school, Michael Petringa was living an advertiser’s dream, acting as the head of the art department for a major corporation. However, Michael knew his true passion was painting. So, he gave up his job, sold his belongings, and set off for Italy. This courageous leap turned into a 15-year pilgrimage across Europe, where Michael learned and taught in art-rich locales in Florence, Munich, and England. As he traveled, he branched out from realism into styles such as abstraction, expressionism, and fingerpainting.
With his journey complete, Michael returned to the US and set up his own studio. In the ensuing 14 years, he’s shared his worldly knowledge with visiting students, all the while honing his craft in various mediums.