Kreigh Knerr, a 27-year-old Nashotah resident who started Knerr Learning Center in 2009, has launched QuotEd Reading Comprehension, an app that uses memorable bits of literature to help prepare students for the methodology, language and critical thinking that the reading and reasoning sections of standardized admission tests required for college or graduate school. QuotEd is currently available for $4.99 at Google Play for Android operating systems and on the iPhone app store.
The app is based on Knerr’s first-hand knowledge of the comprehension skills students need in order to excel in the standardized test format. During the past few years, Knerr has researched, taken and taught more than 30 tests, including the ACT, SAT, PSAT, LSAT, GMAT, GRE, ASVAB and ASTB.
To prepare students, each week day QuotEd delivers a quote and question that’s designed to reflect a typical standardized test query. Users select an answer and receive an explanation of why their choice is either correct or incorrect.
“In the world of standardized testing, exposure and familiarity with the format is key,” says Knerr. “QuotEd shrinks the usual approach of choosing larger works to reshape reasoning and comprehension skills into a model crafted to accommodate today’s classroom and individual time constraints. Plus, the quotes are often wicked fun.”
Knerr worked with a three-person team to develop and refine the 260 questions needed for the first year of the app. The questions include quotes from Benjamin Franklin’s Advice to a Young Tradesman, Henry David Thoreau’s Walden, Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley’s Frankenstein, Edgar Allen Poe’s Philosophy of Composition and John Locke’s An Essay Concerning Human Understanding.
According to Knerr, students can also draw on the quotes and philosophies expressed in them when writing school application essays and graduate exams.
Knerr developed QuotEd in response to the increasing demand for his learning services. Currently, as in years past, his two Learning Centers in Delafield and Whitefish Bay are at capacity in advance of the upcoming ACT and SAT.
In 2009, Knerr moved back to Wisconsin from Massachusetts and established Knerr Learning Center. For two years, he taught seventh grade math at University Lake School while building his business.
Today, Knerr works with approximately 150 students a year, providing one-on-one tutoring and exam preparation. In addition, his institutional clients include University Lake School, St. John’s Northwestern Military Academy and Faith Christian School in Williams Bay. He’s taught ACT courses at the latter two for the past four years.
During the summer, he runs a reading group, science boot camp, math workshop, logic workshop and continues his individual tutoring and growth plan programs for area students.
The students Knerr teaches, and their parents, are fervent supporters. Jennifer Seefeld’s son, Bryan, began working with Knerr during his junior year at Arrowhead High School. The initial focus was ACT and SAT prep but the relationship soon evolved beyond that.
“Kreigh has become an academic life coach for Bryan. He’s helped him prepare for the rigors of college and understand what will be expected of him,” says Seefeld. “It’s so exciting because Kreigh helped ignite an enthusiasm for learning and a love of reading in Bryan. He made it cool to learn and he’s given Bryan an edge over other student athletes.”
Next fall, Bryan Seefeld is attending St. Louis University on a soccer scholarship and credits his work with Knerr for increasing his SAT score. Since many institutions accept the ACT or SAT, Knerr advised Seefeld to take both to see which test he scored better on. Based on the results, Knerr identified the SAT as a better fit for Seefeld’s aptitude.
Cylie McAdams, who attended Nicolet High School and is now enrolled at the University of Wisconsin – Madison as a freshman, also focused her efforts on the SAT.
For McAdams the weekly prep sessions helped her score significantly higher on the SAT, plus she was able to apply the test-taking tools she learned with Knerr to her high school classes.
For each student, Knerr develops a customized plan. McAdams’ curriculum included learning 25 new vocabulary words each week for a total of 500.
“Kreigh gave me valuable advice for the reading and math sections of the SAT,” says McAdams. “He taught me how to review the test paragraphs and determine the key content. In the math section, I learned how to better manage my time and deal with challenging questions.”
In addition to increasing the ACT test scores of juniors at Faith Christian School by an average of three points, Knerr has helped the school enhance its curriculum.
“Based on Kreigh’s insight, we added an elective logic class and redid our freshman science program. We now use a hypotheses driven approach where students complete experiments to test a hypothesis and reach a conclusion,” says Marj DeVore, guidance counselor, Faith Christian School.
Knerr grew up in the Town of Ottawa and attended Gordon College in Wenham, Mass. on scholarship. He triple majored in Classical Studies, Music Performance and History, earning a Bachelor of Music degree and graduating with honors. During college, Knerr was in the Pike Honors Program and the Jerusalem and Athens Honors Program. He was an A.J. Gordon Scholar and Choral Scholar and co-captain of the tennis team. He was also a visiting scholar at Oxford University and while there sang with the Oxford Opera Company and was the assistant choir conductor at St. Giles Church.
Throughout college, he tutored for the No Child Left Behind program, taught SAT and ACT courses, taught voice lessons and tutored Algebra 1, Geometry and Algebra II students.
For QuotEd news, weekly quotes, contests and scholarship opportunities, follow Twitter feed https://twitter.com/QuotEdapp.
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