Cognitive Coaching Chicago, Cognitive Coaching Naperville, Tutoring Naperville, Tutoring Chicago, Fluency, Foundational Skills

Remember that “University Bribery” scandal?  It already seems like a distant memory, right?  It astonished the nation, and then in one fell swoop… it’s gone!  Like so many big issues that face our nation… here today, gone tomorrow!  Do we simply move on to the new and captivating thing of the day?  Or… are our attention spans so short that we need to simply let things go?

Suddenly, news comes out about a family that paid $6 million to get their daughter into Stanford.  Boom!  The public is re-engaged in the “Bribery” scandal again!  While much of the public was so quick to label this as “cheating,” I had a very different take on the matter.  In my opinion, it was a SHORT CUT!  Think about it from a parent’s perspective.  Their kid’s GPA is all but finalized and the test prep courses are barely moving the needle on those ACT or SAT scores.  So, what’s next? 

Their Solution:  Bribe college officials or test administrators.  Get child into a top Ivy League School.  Bolster family reputation.  Problem:  Grossly illegal!  Criminal indictment!

How’s that family reputation looking now?

The better solution:  Plan ahead, because there’s no shortcut to learning or to life.  The Problem:  None!  Provided you’re not afraid of a little hard work.

Just as physical fitness is not achieved overnight, neither is Cognitive Fitness!  A program like FIT LEARNING holds the key to success and it does so by concentrating on the following two areas of learning:


We all talk about learning gaps, but how do we address them?  Think about a pothole in the road.  You see it, maneuver around it… problem solved!  What do we do when that same road is filled with multiple potholes?  It will most certainly result in a bumpy or even treacherous ride ahead, correct?

This is what learning gaps are.  They form one-by-one until the academic journey starts to feel like a long, bumpy ride.  While a lot of lip service is given to learning gaps, seldom is anything done about it.  At Fit Learning, they solve this problem by addressing the missed or fragile foundational skills.  Think of education as one big web of multiple fibers strung together.  What happens if one fiber comes loose?  Things start to become disconnected, right?

Those fibers that were formed early-on in the education process represent the foundational skills.  When those skills go uncorrected, everything a child learns in school begins to come across disjointed.  In other words, it won’t make sense!  Our education system is such that we continue to move kids to the next level, despite whether they have formed a solid foundation or not.  Fit Learning conducts assessments on every child to determine where the deficiencies are.  Their qualified learning coaches will then take them back to all the old concepts that were missed until they eventually catchup to where they’re supposed to be.

How can children be expected to perform long division when they haven’t overcome their issues with basic arithmetic?


If foundational skills represent the blocks, then fluency most certainly represents the mortar.  What does mortar do?  It holds the blocks in place, right?  Fluency achieves the same objective, except it keeps the knowledge in place.

At Fit Learning, it is not enough to just know the material, but one must know it fluently.  Fluency-based learning is essential to retaining the knowledge that has been taught.  Think about how fluent we are with the alphabet.  How can we possibly forget our ABC’s, right?  When all learning is done to fluency standards, then school will start to become easier and easier.

The Fit Learning coaches set goals for each individual child based on correct responses and speed.  The speed is what determines the fluency.  Our education system generally holds its students accountable to correct responses, but timing is rarely taken into consideration.  If Sally and Ted took the same exam, but Sally completed it in 20 minutes, whereas Ted completed it in 10 minutes; who knew the material better?  Ted, correct?  He was fluent with the concepts and will be much more likely to retain it well into the future.


Without brick and mortar, a sound structure is practically impossible.  A child’s academic framework is likewise unstable without proper foundational skills and fluency in place.  While the Fit Learning program is not the least expensive tutorial option available, it is certainly among the best values.  Unlike many tutoring companies that seem to offer no immediate end in sight, many “Fit” students can be done in as little as one 40-hour enrollment.  That naturally depends on the child’s age and number of deficiencies identified.  Best of all, there’s no bribery required.  Unless of course you count all the motivational prizes the learning coaches offer.