A dictionary sailed through the air and nearly hit 5th grader Megan Padden-Shin in the head. Most sisters might devise a way to retaliate against the brother who threw it, but Megan did something entirely different: she opened it up, discovered words and spellings she’d never seen before, and started teaching herself, French.
For her entire life, Megan has had an impassioned zeal for seeking knowledge. “I have loved learning since I was a kid,” she says. So, throughout college and graduate school, she pursued a career in education. Despite the economic impact of the 2008 recession, Megan moved from Massachusetts to start teaching in Virginia where she recognized the power of the human relationships between student and teacher, “My students inspired me to be better as a teacher.”
After a few years, she began thinking about starting her own business. She had a breadth of experience and knowledge in English, Spanish, French, as well as math and the sciences. Shortly after making the commitment to create a tutoring company called O.W.L. (Our Wisdom Leads) Education Services, she had her first client. Steadily, more and more families contacted her for tutoring, academic mentoring, and advocacy.
Megan continued her industrious and disciplined approach to building her company and began to consider launching an online academy to offer academic courses. Then, COVID19 burst onto the scene, causing chaos and forcing school systems to pivot online. Parents started contacting her because they were dissatisfied with the learning environment for their children, and Megan realized, “Now is the time to start O.W.L. Online Academy.”
Megan started the academy based on the philosophical principles she’s always believed: fit the instruction to the individual child’s needs, help children own their learning, position the teacher as the ally of the student. And at the heart of what she does, “a full circle of communication” with students, their caregivers, and anyone else needed to help each child succeed.
For these reasons, she found the Trilogy Mentors platform ideal in order to optimize teaching, learning, and academic support. The post-session reporting, calendar, emailing notifications, and ease of use help her students stay organized and accountable. “The #1 complaint I hear from parents and their children about their school’s virtual learning is how disorganized it is,” she explained. “At O.W.L., I want no surprises for the kids,” which means structure is essential for their success. All students, according to Megan, have to know where they are going and how they will get there, and keeping all the files on the Trilogy Mentors platform means the student and teacher can easily access all the information needed to learn.