Ask GROZA: Education Advice from Scott Groza

Each month, Scott Groza, Director / Co-Founder of Groza Learning Center and private school Groza Academy, answers parent questions regarding their student’s education.  Have a question? Send to  

By SCOTT GROZA | Special to the Palisadian-Post

Finals season is a busy time here at Groza Learning Center and for good reason: the right finals preparation can make all the difference in a student’s year-end grades. And hands down, the most important part of the “right finals preparation” equation is equipping students with a thorough and realistic study plan that includes scheduled study activities for every subject.

So, here are 3 steps you can take to get your kid on track for finals success:

Check on Your Student’s Finals Prep Plan

A good time to check in on the plan is one to two weeks before finals week starts, preferably two. This leaves time for your student to gather supplies, get informed and make a plan. Here are some good questions to ask when you check in:

Do you know when your finals are?

Do you have study guides for each class?

How will you study for each class?

When will you study for each class?

Do you have it all on a calendar?

Make a Checklist

If your student answers, “No,” or doesn’t know the answers to these questions, sit down together and make a checklist for each subject. The history checklist, for example, might look like this:

Date of history final: ______

Ask teacher for study guide.

Gather useful notes and handouts from binder.

Make a list of topics and chapters to study.

Find out how Jake memorizes the order of events.

Ask Katie to study on Thursday.

Get it on a Calendar

Once the checklist questions start getting answered, it’s time to put it all on the calendar. So, if your student doesn’t already have one in progress, give him a blank month-at-a-glance calendar and help him schedule activities. Here are some guidelines:

Focus on one subject at a time.

Make a list of manageable tasks on scratch paper.

Be specific… is he making flashcards or a timeline?

Include questions for the teacher.

Estimate realistic durations for tasks.

Spread tasks out over several days on the calendar.

Include the time of day for each task to be started.

This kind of planning may seem obvious for some of us, but for others it’s not at all instinctive, so this just might be the best thing you do for your kid academically all year.

Scott Groza, Director / Co-Founder of Groza Learning Center and Groza Academy, finds deep meaning in helping kids and parents successfully navigate the challenging world of academics.  With a strong commitment to each student, team building, innovation, and individualized learning, he and his wife Christy Groza have created a multi-faceted educational company that specializes in Tutoring, Test Preparation, Reading Programs, and Private Schooling. The couple is thankful to have four children of their own and enjoys the wild adventure of parenting. Groza Learning Center and Groza Academy are based in Pacific Palisades, and have served the community for nearly 10 years.