Nurturing a Math Prodigy

This student has always been a bright child in the eyes of Grade A Plus tutors, but her report cards indicated she was satisfactory, not particularly exceptional. After being assigned to work with a doctoral math student, she changed. She started “talking” math. She received awards from Grade A Plus for the highest number of minutes spent on the Khan Academy math program and for excelling into the Khan math program two levels higher than her school grade level. Her STAR standardized math test showed a jump into the 92% range and held steady for several months. Her mom indicated her teacher wanted to have her tested for the gifted program. She is the only student in Grade A Plus who has completed the Hour of Code (computer programming) course, which she convinced her teacher to allow her to do at school as she was already enrolled in the Khan program through Grade A Plus and just needed access to a computer to do it.  (See photo; she’s with her tutor.)

Update:  As this student has moved into middle school she has been placed into advanced math classes.  We're expecting great things for her future when it comes to math. 

Learning  to do well!

At the end of the 2014-2015 school year, this student couldn’t remember her multiplication tables and became stressed and riddled with anxiety to the point of tears. Her teacher asked the student's father to help her work on it over the summer.  Grade A Plus tutors focused on her fears, lack of confidence, and moved very slowly with her. They introduced her to the Khan Academy math program and utilized manipulatives so she could visualize the multiplication concepts. She felt ready when school opened in the fall of 2015. However, initial test results did not show much improvement from the end of the previous school year. Grade A Plus stayed the course and continued to work with her and by October her score had moved 15 points higher toward her total mastery goal. The teacher asked the student's father how he had done that! Her comprehension of multiplication meanings and facts and one digit numbers was at the 72% range, compared to a 45% range for adding and subtracting numbers. And oh, her confidence level was way up! (See photo)

IMG_97081- Shakira & Janice Grad Pic.jpg

Achieving Academic Success

The Beginning 

      This student enrolled in Grade A starting in the 6th grade.  She thought tutoring was for troubled or slow kids and didn't want to attend.  But after trying several different activities and clubs during middle school, she always found her way back to the tutoring sessions.  She reported that her low reading score began to rise and by high school she was no longer considered lacking in proficiency. 

Sophomore Year:

    This high schooler was enrolled in an Honors Geometry class as a sophomore in a class with all freshmen and was also the only African American student. She began the class with a concern regarding these two facts. Grade A Plus recommended she sit in the front row and never look back. As a student whose baseline was to earn nothing less than A-, receiving a grade lower than that was devastating to her sense of confidence. 

     Grade A Plus obtained tutors from the MU Math graduate department who provided many hours of tutoring and coaching.  She finished the course with a B-.  But Grade A advocated that she not be discouraged and to continue to pursue courses in math. 

     Grade A Plus learned that this was better "than expected" because bright, capable students have gaps in their learning or a lack of testing knowledge that often works against them. There is not enough time to fill the gaps before the course is over or to teach the strategies for successful testing during the course.

    Grade A Plus Math tutors have begun to work during the summer to tackle these two issues and we’re hoping for greater results with students who enroll next year

Senior Year 

    After tutoring for an additional two years, this senior began to obtain A's on her exams and was no longer intimidated by the coursework or the rigor.  She completed her senior coursework in math and  graduated having completed 4 years of Math courses in May 2018, with honors. She is now enrolled as a freshmen at MU interested in pursuing a degree in Education and a desire to help other young people to develop a love for learning.   She is confident she will do well and we believe that she will too! 

Swimming into Success

     Grade A Plus in collaboration with Macher Swim Club provides 15 weeks of swim training each year for Grade A students.  Community youth not in Grade A can be enrolled in the courses at a discounted rate if they financially qualify. Director, Joanne Macher wants you to be trained early in swimming so that first of all they are "drownproofed" and secondly, she wants them to develop the skills to qualify for employment in the future at summer camps, parks, and pools during their teen years.  "These skills cannot be learned later in life and training must begin early." she says. 

     Each level has identified specific skills  that the students must learn and master in order to move up to the next level. 

     After three years of training, Grade A now has students developing at various levels of competency in swim.  As of November 2018, The Grade A        


2018 Swim Achievers  


  DeShaun Linzie

Advanced Beginners

  Cadence Ruffin, Aniyah Wiley

Low Intermediate 

   Auvrey Pierro, Jibesh Dhakal, Andrew Inn, Angela       Inn


   Alex Inn, Jae'Dyn Crum-Douglas

Junior Swimmer 

    Ace Wyatt, Aayush Dhakal