The Goel Family
At Priddy, the structure and adaptability of the program allows students to foster the love of learning any subject. In most cases, it’s reading and arithmetic. For the Goel’s, it’s been those and more. “We came in for reading and math,” says Mrs. Goel, mother of sons Arjun, 8, and Rohan, 6. “But there’s so much more to the Priddy experience.
When Arjun was struggling with long division, Mrs. Goel told Mr. Priddy, who assigned worksheets Arjun felt more comfortable doing so he could regain his confidence.
Arjun needed to revisit familiar concepts in order to master long division. This attention to detail can only occur when the teacher is perceptive to the student’s needs.
“If a student is having difficulty with a concept,” says Mr. Priddy, founding director of Priddy Learning Academy, “we break it down to smaller steps, making learning incremental. Especially with young children, confidence is critical.” Mr. Priddy asks parents to communicate any difficulties so that teachers, parents and students—together—can make success happen.
“I like that I can tell Mr. Priddy when my sons are overwhelmed, or if they need more work,” says Mrs. Goel. Mr. Priddy gives individualized attention to each student, looking at critical factors, such as forming letters.
Three years ago, Arjun, then in first grade, disliked reading. Rohan, who was in preschool, had a short attention span. Within three months, their focus increased. “Now, I have to repeat myself before Arjun puts his book down,” says Mrs. Goel. And as for Rohan? “He can sit for 1.5 hours to study and do his homework.” Their handwriting has also improved.
Mrs. Goel and her husband live in Short Hills, and both went to Catholic boarding schools in India. “It was very structured,” she says. “We’d be standing at 5:45 AM to make the bed. Free-play was cherished—we had only 45 minutes.” In boarding school, Mrs. Goel learned how to manage her time, a skill that she wants for her sons, and finds at Priddy.
Arjun and Rohan are competitive, energetic, and love to socialize. The Priddy structure allows children to hone in on their creativity and engage in learning, no matter the topic. Oftentimes, during car rides, Rohan and Arjun will discuss the science of what they see outside: air, water, farmland.
“They attribute being smart to Mr. Priddy,” says Mrs. Goel. “They say, ‘We’re smart because we go to Priddy.’”
Arjun and Rohan have attended two Priddy summer sessions. “Mr. Priddy goes above and beyond,” says Mrs. Goel. “We had Rohan and Arjun keep vacation journals. Mr. Priddy read and commented on them. It added so much for Arjun and Rohan because they looked forward to coming back.” There were times Rohan wrote 9 pages in one day, and Mr. Priddy read them all. “It’s been a good experience for my sons,” she says. “We can’t say enough.”
Carly Susser is the Communications Assistant and Writing Coach at Priddy Learning Academy. To share your story, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org