The Organizational Workshop:
All students begin with our 90-minute introductory organizational workshop. We’ve designed the workshop to be flexible, thorough, interactive and fun, encouraging students to step back, reflect and dream big while learning strategies for purposeful learning.
Each 90-minute workshop is done one-on-one with a Green Ivy academic advisor, and explores a wide range of topics, including distraction management, physical organization, scheduling skills, study habits, communicating with teachers, and goal setting.
We know that when students focus on daily habits like organizing, managing distractions, completing assignments proactively and studying effectively, the grades will often be better than anticipated, with far lower levels of stress and overwhelm. We also help students learn the hows and whys of using a paper planner to keep track of minor assignments, create study plans for upcoming assessments, and prioritize responsibilities.
Our goal is to help students develop systems and routines that work well for them, including adaptable binders for written papers and thoughtful digital folders for tracking online work and documents. Our storage strategy is simple: students should be able to find any document – written or online – in under a minute. Put simply, being organized saves time and reduces stress.
Above all, our initial workshop – and all the work in our office – is personalized. We invite students to reflect on their own tendencies around nutrition, movement, and sleep, and to identify their biggest sources of stress. We use their reflections as the starting point for collaborative discussions about activities and strategies that can help address and alleviate regular stressors.
Executive Functioning/Organizational Coaching:
Students can easily be overwhelmed juggling five to seven different classes, all with unique short- and long-term assignments, along with extracurricular activities, family events, and their own social interests. Our work is all about encouraging students to develop critical organization, time-management, planning, and prioritization skills to help them feel more confident and reduce their overall stress.
We begin our work through a 90-minute, one-on-one organizational workshop in which we review our foundational strategies around executive functioning (as highlighted in Green Ivy founder Ana Homayoun’s first book, That Crumpled Paper Was Due Last Week). During the workshop we review binders, digital folders, and written planners; distraction management; habits related to food, sleep, and stress management; as well as personal and academic goals. Our approach is positive and solutions oriented, and students often leave the workshop feeling excited and inspired to be more organized.
Students follow up the workshop with weekly, 55-minute sessions throughout the school year, during which we continue to help students develop habits around crucial organization, time-management, and personal productivity skills and systems that help them become and stay confident, resilient, and enthusiastic about school and life. During each session, we help students reflect on their previous week and plan and strategize for their upcoming week.
Our focus is to go beyond just grades and scores to empower students to consider and develop their own personal values and reflect on their daily behavioral habits and choices. Above all, we want students to become encouraged, inspired, and confident members of their school and greater communities.
“Green Ivy has been the most valuable resource for our son throughout his high school experience… They truly care about my son’s success in high school and beyond.”
- Parent of Saratoga, CA high school student
“At Green Ivy, we love the 'one-on-one' attention that’s missing in the classroom… I particularly like their professional approach and their outstanding communication, as they provide both parents and students with progress reports. All three of our children have been paired with highly qualified [staff members] that have positively impacted their self-confidence and success in the classroom.”
- Parent of several Los Altos Hills, CA students
“We’ve been working with Green Ivy for several months now and are very impressed with the kindness and talent of the [academic advisors]. They appear to use time efficiently, and are thoughtful in their suggestions. My daughter has a quiz in biology tomorrow and my husband said, ‘I don’t know how she’s going to do on the test, but she knows the material cold.’ Thanks!”
- Parent of Mountain View, CA high school students
"I would like to thank you both for your time helping me make my college applications stronger. I feel I couldn’t have done this without you and I am really grateful that I was able to get in. Thank you again for all the help you have given me."
- Palo Alto High School Senior, Class of 2021
"The tailored approach supported all three of our kids to learn more about themselves—strengths and areas needing improvement, enabling them to apply to schools that matched their interests and talents.”
- Kathy C. and Michael C., Parent of High School of Class of '07, '10, '14, Los Gatos, CA
Often in combination with our organizational coaching, we provide guided instruction during the school year and summer months for students needing extra support in the following subjects:
- English (including AP Literature and AP Language)
- Math (Algebra, Geometry, Trigonometry, Pre-Calculus, Calculus)
- Science (Physical Science, Biology, Chemistry, Physics)
- Spanish (all levels)
- History (Social Studies, World History, U.S. History, Government)
- IB-Level Classes
In addition to encouraging students to understand the necessary content, we help students recognize the most meaningful and productive ways for them to learn and engage with the material. We work closely with our students to develop methods that work best with their unique learning styles to help them build their understanding as well as their academic self-confidence.
Put simply, great writing changes lives.
At Green Ivy, we know effective writing skills open doors to diverse worlds of opportunity, creativity, and knowledge. For nearly two decades, we've designed engaging, interactive, informative and fun writing workshops for students of all ages and all levels of writing comfort.
We personalize our one-on-one writing workshops to the needs of each student. Before the first session, students fill out a basic questionnaire and submit two current writing samples to help us individualize our overall curriculum and hone in on areas of growth and opportunity.
Our writing workshops focus on topics including (and not limited to!) grammar, idea development and self-editing strategies, essay organization, expository writing, persuasive writing, and creative writing.
We offer our writing workshops throughout the year and during the summer in packages of 8, 12, or 15 sessions of 55 minutes or 80 minutes. We work with students both in-office and virtually, so our writing programs are accessible to students all over the world.
College Admissions and Academic Advising:
The average high school guidance counselor is responsible for 482 students! Many caring, qualified high school counselors simply aren’t able to provide the individualized, in-depth guidance and academic support that students (and their parents!) need.
At Green Ivy, our thoughtful, balanced, and personalized approach empowers students to develop competitive applications and personal statements that highlight their individual strengths.
Students often begin the college counseling process with us during their sophomore or junior year through a one-hour consultation in which we review coursework, transcripts, test scores, activities, and personal interests.
We offer several options for working with Green Ivy on the college application process. Click through for more details and to register.
Sophomore/early junior year: Initial meeting with counselor.
January/February (junior year): Meeting to go over transcripts and test scores (optional), discuss potential standardized testing schedule and upcoming summer activities, and make suggestions for the senior year.
April/May/June (junior year): Students take standardized tests and AP tests as appropriate, review an initial list of colleges, make several college visits, and fill out questionnaires for teacher and school counselor recommendations.
Summer between junior and senior year: Summer activities, final review of schools, college counseling intensive bootcamp, and initial drafts of personal statement(s) and supplements.
August/September/October (senior year): Finalize timeline based on final school list, decide on Early Application/Early Decision (EA/ED) process, finalize personal statements, work on supplemental questions for each school, give teachers and counselor additional background information, and finalize standardized tests (as appropriate).
November/December (senior year): Finalize applications, submit EA/ED applications as appropriate, and submit all applications by first week of December.
January (senior year): Follow up with counselor for midyear reports, and consider EDII applications.
March (senior year): If deferred or waitlisted, write Letter of Continued Interest.
April (senior year): Review acceptances, discuss options, and help make final decisions.
Academic Advising for College Students
College has always been a time of transition, reflection, exploration and opportunity. Under the best of circumstances, the transition to college life can feel exciting, disorienting, energizing and overwhelming. And today, many students are arriving on campus having spent a good chunk of their high school careers learning online, and much of the high school activities and happenings we once took for granted we truncated, altered or eliminated. Attention spans, study habits, interpersonal skills, motivation and some basic executive functioning capabilities have been significantly impacted.
Today’s students also need more time, structure, support and guidance than in previous years. Despite all the best intentions, many college academic advising and wellness offices are unable to meet the increasing needs of incoming college students.
Our in-college academic advising program is designed to provide weekly guidance and support to students as they transition to college life. Our work combines executive functioning skills (organization, prioritization, planning, adaptable thinking) with basic life management (nutrition, sleep, stress management) along with academic and personal goal setting. In doing so, we have created a new roadmap that has helped dozens of students successfully make the shift to college and beyond.
We begin by helping students review their classes, interests, and activities, and support the design of a “forty-hour work week” model that prioritizes academic learning as well as overall well-being. We meet with students for an initial intake, followed by weekly follow-up sessions that are scheduled at the same time each week during the academic quarter or semester. In addition, students who work with us can take advantage of our monthly virtual drop-in “office hours” to get extra support, regroup, or find a place to get started on work.
Our program includes:
An initial intake workshop to review college schedule, interests, and activities and identify academic, career, and mental wellness resources on campus
Weekly sessions to monitor academic progress and identify skill development and support areas
Time to reflect on workload and develop reasonable and realistic short-term goals
Skill–building around organization, time-management, prioritization, personal planning, task initiation and completion, and adaptable thinking and problem-solving
Structure to create a motivating plan of action that promotes social and emotional well-being
Support in selecting rigorous yet balanced coursework per semester/quarter, and providing encouragement around exploring new interests and extracurricular activities
Planning opportunities to think critically about summer plans, career interests, and next steps.
Interested? Please fill out this interest form and a staff member will follow up.