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Enrolments At Spectrum Tuition Now Open For 2017 – Get An Extra $50 Off!

Please note, this offer is strictly limited and will end on 10th December 2017. So if you want to save on your fees next year please make sure you enrol before the end of term 4 (10/12/2016).

 

We have reached the end of 2016 and would like to thank all our parents, students and tutors for continuing to play an active part in our thriving community. It has been a wonderful privilege to contribute to your child’s educational journey and we look forward to maintaining a strong partnership for many years to come.

If you’d like to download our newsletter (which includes our timetable and prices for 2017) click the link below:

Term 4 Newsletter

Enrolments Now Open For 2017 – Get An Extra $50 Off!

We are very excited to release our 2017 timetable with priority enrolments for existing students. In most cases, students should enrol in the next level up, e.g. if your child is currently doing Year 7 classes at Spectrum, they should enrol in Year 8 etc. However if you are unsure, or if you are interested in having your child sit a selective/ scholarship exam next year, please contact us and we will be able to advise you accordingly.
Our updated investment schedule is attached. Students who enrol and pay their super early bird term fees or yearly fees by Saturday 10th December, will receive an extra $50 discount off 2016 prices plus access to free books to use over the holidays.
To guarantee a place in your chosen classes, please enrol by Saturday 10th December to take advantage of these bonuses.

You can make your payments online by simply filling in the following form/s.

Pay For The Year Pay For The Term

pay and save $50

Free Books For Students Who Pre-enrol For 2017!

For those looking for some additional materials to complete over the summer holidays, we have a number of extra course books for students who pre-enrol for 2017. Titles are strictly limited and are snapped up quickly so get in quick to get first picks.

Changes To Books For 2017

From 2017, we will be adding answers to the following week’s booklets to make it easier for students to check their understanding. For example, the week 2 booklet will contain answers to the week 1 booklet etc.
Bring a Study Sidekick – Get a $30 Gift Certificate
For every new friend you refer to Spectrum, both you and your friend will receive a $30 gift certificate to use towards the following term or year’s tuition fees if they enrol in our classes. If you do refer a friend, complete the following short online form so we know that you were the one who referred them in case your friend forgets to tell us! Visit www.spectrumtuition.com/friends

Updated VCE Curriculum in 2017

There will be a number of changes to the VCE study design for 2017. We have been working hard on ensuring that our courses align with the updated curriculum to help prepare students well ahead of their exams which will take place towards the end of the year. Other features of our VCE curriculum include:

  1. A specific section outlining insights from the examination report. For each topic, we have analysed and summarised specific comments outlined in the examination reports from previous years so you can avoid making common errors and improve your technique. Our expert tutors, who have successfully been through the process themselves, have organised these tips, and have provided their own commentary to help you work as efficiently as possible
  2. Exam style questions to help you become familiar with the style and difficulty level of questions likely to appear on the exams.
  3. Cumulative tests following each key topic to build up test stamina and as an effective revision tool throughout the year!

Have A Happy Festive Season!

On behalf of all staff, I would like to thank you again for your continued support and wish you and your families the very best over the festive season. I look forward to seeing you again in 2017!

The Power of “Yet”

I recently came across a TED talk by Carol S Dweck, a Professor of Psychology at Stanford University, that explained the profound potential of the simple word “yet”. This talk resounded with our beliefs regarding learning and education, so we thought we should share it with you, and explain some of the ways in which we, as tutors and you, as parents, can use these ideas to help our students reach their full potential.

What is the power of “yet”?

In her talk, Dweck distinguishes between two student mindsets that she has encountered in her research: “fixed” and “growth”. When students with a “fixed” mindset are faced with a difficult or unfamiliar problem that they can’t solve, they tend to take it as a judgement on their own intelligence. “Fixed” mindset students are happiest when they are getting answers right, when they are getting A’s on their tests, when they can easily answer questions. However, when faced with new ideas and concepts, they tend to get defensive. In various studies, Dweck has found that these students resort to cheating, deflection, and giving up when faced with difficult problems.

On the other hand, students with a “growth” mindset are those that view difficulties as opportunities for growth. Instead of looking at an unfamiliar problem and saying “I don’t know how to do this,” they say: “I don’t know how to do this yet.” Dweck has found that students who use this sort of language aren’t stuck in the present. They understand that they are always in a continual process of learning and developing. Saying “not yet” instead of “not” suggests the possibility for future growth.

Why is this important?

On a daily basis, we see the profound impact that these two mindsets can have on a student’s performance. In particular, a “fixed” mindset can cause difficulties for students transitioning from primary school to high school, students studying for a Select entry or Scholarship Exam, or students commencing their VCE. At these points of their education, students are going to be faced with a number of challenging concepts and difficult tasks. Often, at these times, students can become overwhelmed and go from getting straight A’s to suddenly getting C’s or D’s. This, in itself, is not the problem. What’s important is how they respond to these challenges. Do they give up, or do they use their limitations as motivation to learn more?

So, what can we do?

Obviously, students with “growth” mindsets are more likely to respond positively to challenges and, ultimately, to perform better than those with a “fixed” mindset. But what can we, as tutors, and you, as parents, do to ensure that your child develops a healthy and productive mindset? Here are some things to keep in mind…

1. Praise wisely

Students who are only praised for their successes are much more likely to develop “fixed” mindsets. According to Dweck’s findings, it’s much more productive to praise students for effort, strategy and progress. As tempting as it is to only reward good performance, make sure you primarily praise your child when they work hard, when they refuse to give up, when they try something new. This will teach them that there is more to education than just getting the answer right.

2. Use growth-based language

It’s also important to be mindful of the language that you and your child use. Try to avoid language that labels a student “good” or “bad” at something. Instead of saying “I’m bad at maths” or “I can’t write an essay,” say “I can’t do this particular question yet” or “I have a lot to learn about essay writing.” When giving feedback to students, aim to use language that is specific, goal-oriented, and suggests the potential for future learning.

3. Provide constant challenges

“Fixed” mindsets can also develop when naturally able students are not given sufficient challenges. This is something we see all the time; clever students are often allowed to drift through school, achieving high marks with relatively minimal effort. Unfortunately, these students rarely learn how to deal with challenges, and tend to give up when things may not be so easy anymore.

That is why it is important for students to work at or just above their level, to ensure that they are constantly challenged in order for them to grow and develop. If they find some sections difficult, use this as an opportunity to praise their effort, strategies and progress, because it is not that they can’t do it, they just can’t do it yet!

If you want to watch Carol S Dweck’s video it’s just below

Feel free to contact us if you have any questions about how we can help your child develop a healthy and productive mindset towards their education or click here to book a free assessment.

Why You Should Take A VCE Subject Early

This is the time of year when year 10 students will start to make serious decisions regarding which subjects they will choose to complete for their VCE.

Many schools will offer students the opportunity to complete a year 12 subject while they are in year 11 and while most students will take advantage of this option, other students decide not to and instead opt to complete all their Year 12 subjects in the following year. In our experience we find that taking a VCE subject in year 10 has many advantages.

The Structure Of VCE: A Brief Overview

When VCE students finish their exams at the end of year 12, they each receive a total score, which is used to calculate their ultimate ATAR (Australian Tertiary Admissions Rank).

The ATAR (Australian Tertiary Admissions Rank) is based on up to six VCE results and is calculated using:

  • Your best score in any one of the English studies (English, Literature, English Language) plus
  • The scores of your next three studies (which together with the English subject make the “Primary Four”), plus
  • 10% of the scores for any fifth and sixth study with you may have completed (these are called increments)

These scores are combined to produce an ATAR aggregate, which is a number between 0 and over 210. All students are ranked in order according to this aggregate and the percentage rank is converted to an ATAR, which is a number between 0 and 99.95.

What this means is that a total of 6 subjects can contribute to a student’s total ATAR. Students who only do 5 subjects miss out on a valuable possible 10%. Despite this, most schools only allow students to complete 5 subjects in year 12. The only way to get around this, and avoid missing out on that precious 10%, is to complete a VCE subject early. This is an increasingly popular option. Each year more and more dedicated students choose to start a year 11 subject in year 10 and complete their year 12 exams in year 11.

Three Reasons You Should Take A VCE Subject In Year 10

Here are some reasons why students should take up the option to complete a year 12 subject early:

1. Gain Valuable Experience

Apart from ensuring that you have completed a 6th subject, the main benefit of completing a VCE subject a year early is the valuable experience it gives students. Students who take a year 12 subject in year 11 will gain valuable insight into what it takes to study for and sit a proper VCE exam. They will learn how to prioritise their time, organise their notes, revise questions and deal with exam pressures. And, best of all, they will learn all of these skills before they even commence year 12 and tackle the full load of subjects.

2. Focus Your Energy

The other benefit of completing a year 12 subject in year 11 is the potential to get a high score. Year 11 students don’t have the distractions and pressures unique to year 12 students. They don’t have to deal with prefect positions, graduation ceremonies, university applications, or the pressure of studying for 5 other year 12 exams. Because of this, a student who takes a year 12 subject early can focus significantly much more attention and energy on that one subject. Because they only have a single year 12 exam to study for that year, their chances of getting a high score dramatically increases.

3. Cover Your Bases

Considering that VTAC uses scores of up to 6 subjects to calculate the ATAR aggregate (English, the scores of your next 3 best subjects and 10% of any fifth and sixth subject), choosing 6 subjects is strongly recommended to maximise the ATAR you will ultimately achieve. Many schools offer Year 11 students the opportunity to study one Year 12 subject. Take advantage of this if the opportunity presents itself.

Most importantly, 6 subjects is obviously better than 5. A student who completes a subject early will have an automatic 10% advantage over a student who only completes 5. On a more pragmatic note, a 6th subject will ensure that a poor mark in one subject will have significantly less of an impact on the student’s overall score.

If you think your child should start a VCE subject a year early, or you would like to know more about how you can improve your child’s chances of ATAR success, feel free to call us on 1800 668 177 or email us for more information!