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In This Issue:
Developing The Cure For Fake News/Misinformation
Study Tip: Practical Thinking In Life
Coach Profile: Matt Westerman
Quick Links
Academic Success Partner 
of the Month
This month we're excited to introduce you to a brand new partner doing great work in Education Therapy in southern California, Kimberly Green. An educational therapist going on 15 years now, Kim works with kids from as young as five, all the way up to 21 who are experiencing academic, social or emotional difficulties related to school. Going beyond a
focus on specific subjects, Kim helps students to develop and build skills that may be lacking in a student, such as working memory, higher order thinking, problem solving and expressive language
to name just a few. Having graduated from Cal State Northridge in 2002 with a Masters in Special Education, Kim has since developed a highly effective, collaborative approach, working with the student's parents, teachers and schools to build a platform for success. For more information,  email Kim 
or call  310.702.4856
Looking For A Student 
Community Service Opportunity?
Meet Rickey Smith, social entrepreneur and owner of the sustainable food business Urban Green. He's started a community education venture called the Urban Green Kids Row program, creating opportunities for kids from diverse backgrounds to participate in many activities related to food sustainability, from planting seeds  to learning about how organic food is grown and harvested. For more info on a terrific
community service and volunteering opportunity for kids,  email  Rickey, 

or call (800) 200 3320.

Check out Our  YouTube Video!
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Academic Success is very proud of the two-minute video we recently produced to give you a feel for who we are, our philosophy and the way we approach our work
How Academic Success Can Support You
At Academic Success we take great pride in finding the right coach to support the unique needs of each student we help.  Please check out the areas where we work on our   web site  and let us know how we can support you.

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Looking for a College Counselor or Ed Therapist?
We work and partner with excellent Educational Therapists and College Counselors throughout the L.A. area.  Give us a call and we can recommend the right fit for your child.

How Is Fake News
Impacting Our Kids' Education?

Regardless of their political allegiance, most  Americans would probably say that fake news and misinformation is now a societal problem. However, what may be overlooked is its impact on our kids.
Information literacy has become a key ingredient for long-term academic and professional success in our world. For our kids, that begins with their education. But how can education continue to fulfill its function in a time of information (both real and fake) overload?  
In this month's edition, we'll shine a light on an issue that is crying out for more national attention. We'll tell the stories of teachers taking creative action in the classroom and offer some tips to push against the tide of misinformation. 
Critical thinking and fact-checking could make all the difference in your child's efforts to research, create and complete their academic work. We hope this issue helps parents and kids to gain a deeper insight into the challenge and continue to move forward. 

At Academic Success, we see the value in looking to the horizon and being at the forefront in helping kids confront the most pressing issues of the day. 

Please call with any questions at (310) 823 4398 or

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All the best,

The Academic Success Team

"Knowledge is power. Information is liberating. Education is the premise of progress, in every society, in every family."
                                                                               - Kofi Annan

Education News 

Developing The Cure
For Fake News
While it's clear that the emergence of fake news is not a healthy development for our citizens, it has produced one positive result: teachers are being forced to get more creative in the classroom. This NPR feature, focused around the News Literacy Project, details the excellent work being done by teachers to encourage critical thinking.  

History Teachers 
On The Front Lines
One way to ensure our kids think critically about current and future issues is to strengthen their ability to analyze and interpret the past. This detailed, insightful article from the Smithsonian magazine delves into the process of teaching history to our kids and makes the case for continued innovation in this most important of academic subjects. 
Making Fact-Checking Easy
If adults sometimes have trouble finding the motivation to fact-check information they consume online, it's understandable that our kids may not always take the time to do it. This list of the best fact-checking websites can save students time and stress and may transform their web research from a chore into something they enjoy. 

A Design
For Critical Thinking
Fact-checking is one thing, but the question remains: how do we develop our kids' ability to think critically in order to challenge and question information that's presented to them? This excellent piece from author and inspirational thinker Lee Watanabe Crockett provides a blueprint for teachers from which parents and kids might also benefit. 

The Disease Of 'Digital Naïveté'

What is Digital Naïveté? Put simply, it's trusting an online information source that isn't reliable. It doesn't take much imagination to see how this poses a huge problem for our kids' academic wellbeing, but the problem is being addressed: this informative New York Times feature outlines the process of how fake news is spread and how best to respond to it.  

Study Tips 

Practicing Critical Thinking In Life

Elsewhere in this edition, we've provided some ways of developing critical thinking from the academic perspective. Sometimes it's also beneficial to apply a new habit in our personal lives as well.
There's an old critical thinking maxim: challenge everything. While that may not be necessary (and could end up exhausting us and those around us), pushing ourselves to find alternative perspectives on what we experience every day can be a low-pressure way to start building our critical thinking faculty.
When making judgments or expressing opinions, follow up by asking: 
might there be another perspective on this ?  
If so, what is it and who might have that perspective?
Another question with the power to enlighten is: what circumstances in my own life would need to be different in order to share that perspective?
If something seems true beyond a shadow of a doubt, make the argument for why it may not be true. If you want to take it further, see if you can find evidence to back up your argument.
This daily mental habit will not only strengthen your ability to think laterally and make arguments, it will also enrich your life on a personal and academic level.

Coach Profile 

Meet Matt Westerman,
Coach Profile Of The Month

This month we'd like to re-introduce you to one of the veterans of on our team, Matt Westerman. Having earned his BA in psychology from UC Santa Barbara, Matt is very familiar with many of the mental and emotional challenges that students face during finals time. Matt brings an insightful and compassionate approach to his coaching. Knowing that enthusiasm is infectious, Matt is relentlessly optimistic and encouraging when working with his students, motivating them to push themselves farther then they normally would. He understands that everyone learns differently, and enjoys discovering the best ways in which his students learn and then applying that method. Matt loves to see his students begin to believe in themselves and realize how much they're capable of.
He enjoys playing basketball with his friends in his spare time and is also a talented singer/songwriter who plays frequently in the LA area.
We consider it a privilege and an honor to support students and their families throughout the Los Angeles area.  Please call us at any time; we welcome your thoughts and input.  We are available at 310-823-4398.

Jamie Altshule
Academic Success, Inc.