LEARNING STYLES are various approaches and strategies that individuals use to acquire and process new information and skills. These styles reflect differences in how people prefer to learn and can influence their effectiveness in educational and training settings. While learning styles have been a topic of interest in education and psychology, it’s important to note that the concept has faced criticism and is not universally accepted within the academic community. Nonetheless, understanding learning styles can be useful for tailoring teaching methods and study techniques to better suit individual preferences.

Many teachers are aware that each student prefers different learning styles and techniques. Learning styles tend to group common ways that people learn. This means every one of us has a mix of learning styles.

One of those stray emails you receive from time to time got me into thinking. It had four key questions:

  • Does one of your class have high readiness to learn but lacks motivation?
  • Does another have a low ability but with high levels of interest?
  • Does one of your class have high readiness to learn but lacks motivation?
  • Does another have a low ability but with high levels of interest?


An individual person may have a dominant learning style with far less use of the other styles. Still there are others, who find that they use different styles in different circumstances.

Believe In Yourself

Ultimately, there is no right mix, nor are one’s learning styles fixed. Any person may develop ability in less dominant styles as well as further develop styles that they already use well.

It is commonly recognized that educational settings tend to lean towards certain learning styles. These learning styles are based on the idea that individuals have different preferences on how they process information and learn effectively.

Common Learning Styles

VISUAL LEARNERS: These learners prefer to see information in the form of charts, diagrams, images, or videos. They benefit from visual aids and often have a strong spatial understanding.

AUDITORY LEARNERS: These learners learn best through listening and verbal communication. They prefer lectures, discussions, and audio recordings to absorb information effectively. These students prefer using sound and music.

KINESTHETIC LEARNERS: These learners are hands-on and learn through physical experiences and movement. They benefit from activities, demonstrations, and practical applications of knowledge.

READING/WRITING LEARNERS: These learners prefer to learn through reading and writing. They excel in written assignments, note-taking, and reading materials to absorb and process information.

SOCIAL LEARNERS: These learners thrive in collaborative environments and learn best through interactions with others. They enjoy group discussions, teamwork, and cooperative learning activities.

LOGICAL LEARNING STYLE: Logical learners prefer to learn by thinking and reasoning. They may learn best by solving problems, analyzing data, or doing experiments.

SOLITARY LEARNERS: These learners prefer to work independently and learn effectively in quiet, focused settings. They excel in self-paced learning, individual study, and personal reflection.


It’s important to note that individuals may exhibit a combination of learning styles and can adapt their learning preferences depending on the situation. Teachers and educators often employ a variety of instructional strategies and materials to accommodate different learning styles in the classroom and promote a well-rounded learning experience.

It is important to note that people do not always fit neatly into one learning style category. Most people have a combination of learning styles, and they may learn best in different ways depending on the subject matter or task at hand.

There are many benefits to understanding your learning style. When you know how you learn best, you can choose learning strategies that will help you succeed. You can also ask your teachers to accommodate your learning style.

Here are some tips for learning in your preferred learning style:

  • Visual Learners: Use images, charts, and graphs to help you understand information. Take notes using pictures or symbols.
  • Auditory Learners: Listen to lectures, read aloud, or record yourself reading the material.
  • Kinesthetic Learners: Take breaks to move around or do something physical while you’re learning. Act out what you’re learning or creating a model.
  • Read/Write Learners: Take notes, write summaries, or create mind maps.
  • Social Learners: Study with a group of friends, join a study group, or ask your teacher or professor for help.
  • Solitary Learners: Find a quiet place to study where you won’t be interrupted. Take breaks when you need them.
  • Logical Learners: Break down the material into smaller steps. Solve problems or do experiments to help you understand the material.

Thus, by recognizing and understanding their learning styles, students can use techniques that are better suited to them. This, ultimately, improves the speed and quality of one’s learning.

ULTIMATELY, in practice, teachers and learners can benefit from considering learning styles as one of many factors when designing instruction and studying. However, it’s crucial to use a variety of teaching methods and strategies to cater to diverse learning needs and not rely solely on a single learning style model.



Family time refers to the moments and activities that family members spend together to strengthen their relationships, create lasting memories, and enjoy each other’s company. Family time is essential for fostering a sense of belonging, building trust, and promoting communication within the family unit. It can take various forms and can be as simple as sharing a meal together or engaging in more elaborate outings and activities.

Cute family png sticker, cartoon

Here are some key aspects and benefits of family time:

  1. Quality Time: Family time involves being fully present and engaged with one another, allowing for meaningful interactions and connections.
  2. Bonding and Connection: Regular family time strengthens the emotional bond between family members, promoting a sense of togetherness and unity.
  3. Communication: Spending time together provides opportunities for open and honest communication, enabling family members to share their thoughts, feelings, and experiences.
  4. Shared Experiences: Engaging in activities together creates shared memories and experiences that become cherished moments for the family.
  5. Support System: Family time fosters a supportive environment where members can rely on each other for help, encouragement, and understanding.
  6. Building Traditions: Family time often includes establishing and upholding family traditions that can be passed down through generations.
  7. Teaching Values: Through family time, parents can impart important values, ethics, and life lessons to their children.
  8. Stress Relief: Spending time with loved ones can be a source of comfort and stress relief during challenging times.
  9. Celebrations: Family time allows for celebrating special occasions, holidays, and milestones together.
  10. Strengthening Relationships: Regular family time contributes to stronger relationships among family members, including parents, siblings, and extended family.
  11. Learning and Growth: Engaging in activities together promotes learning, skill development, and personal growth for all family members.
  12. Unplugging from Technology: Family time can serve as a time to unplug from electronic devices and focus on meaningful interactions with each other.
  13. Improving Health and Well-being: Research shows that strong family ties positively impact mental and emotional well-being.
  14. Understanding and Empathy: Spending time together fosters better understanding and empathy among family members.
  15. Love and Nurturing: Family time provides a nurturing environment where love and care are expressed freely. In today’s fast-paced world, finding time for family activities can be challenging, but it is vital for the health and happiness of the family. Whether it’s through regular family dinners, game nights, outings, or vacations, investing in family time can have long-lasting and positive effects on everyone involved.  
shallow focus photo of woman using game boy
Photo by Aline Viana Prado on Pexels.com

Summer break is a great opportunity for families to bond, create lasting memories, and have fun together. Here are 25 family time activities to enjoy during the summer break:

  1. PICNIC in THE PARK: Pack a delicious lunch and head to a nearby park for a relaxing picnic.
  2. BEACH DAY: Spend a day at the beach, swimming, building sandcastles, and playing beach games.
  3. BACKYARD CAMPING: Set up a tent in the backyard for a fun camping experience under the stars.
  4. NATURE WALKS: Explore local trails, nature reserves, or botanical gardens together.
  5. FRUIT PICKING: Visit a fruit farm and pick seasonal fruits as a family.
  6. OUTDOOR MOVIE NIGHT: Set up a movie screen in the backyard and watch a family-friendly movie under the night sky.
  7. COOKING TOGETHER: Prepare meals or bake treats as a family, and enjoy the delicious results.
  8. FAMILY BIKE RIDE: Go for a bike ride together and explore new routes in your area.
  9. WATER BALLOON FIGHT: Have a fun and refreshing water balloon fight in the backyard.
  10. MINI GOLF: Play a round of mini-golf at a local course.
  11. VISIT A MUSEUM OR ZOO: Spend a day exploring a museum or zoo nearby.
  12. DIY SCIENCE EXPERIMENTS: Conduct simple science experiments at home and learn together.
  13. ARTS AND CRAFTS: Engage in arts and crafts projects, like painting, drawing, or making friendship bracelets.
  14. PLANT a GARDEN: Start a family garden and watch it grow throughout the summer.
  15. VISIT AN AMUSEMENT PARK: Have a thrilling day at an amusement park together.
  16. FAMILY TALENT SHOW: Organize a talent show where everyone can showcase their unique talents.
  17. OUTDOOR SPORTS: Play sports like soccer, frisbee, or badminton in the backyard or at a local park.
  18. FAMILY KARAOKE: Have a karaoke night at home and sing your hearts out.
  19. EXPLORE A NEW CITY OR TOWN: Take a day trip to explore a neighbouring city or town.
  20. BOARD GAME NIGHT: Play board games or card games together for some friendly competition.
  21. VISIT A FARMER’S MARKET: Discover local produce and artisanal goods at a farmer’s market.
  22. ART OR SCIENCE WORKSHOPS: Join family-friendly workshops at local community centres or museums.
  23. FAMILY READING TIME: Read books together or take turns reading aloud from a favourite book.
  24. VISIT A WATER PARK: Spend a day at a water park to cool off and have a blast on water slides.
  25. FAMILY DANCE PARTY: Have a dance party at home with your favourite music and dance moves.

Remember, the key is to choose activities that the whole family will enjoy, creating special moments and strengthening your family bond during the summer break.  



These could be very long, lazy holidays which are the stuff of idyllic childhood memories. While in the past those hot summers may have been taken up climbing trees, building dams and playing in the woods, or travelling, these days children on school holidays are more likely to spend their time glued to an electronic device, be it a mobile phone or an iPad or watching television.

Greece holiday travel destination

Experts have warned that children’s physical fitness significantly drops over the course of the school holidays. In a recent study by scientists at the UK Active health charity and the University of Essex reveals pupils return to lessons in September overweight and with significantly lower cardiorespiratory fitness. All these could be avoided by talking and persuading Little Johnny or Miss Shona to do a little bit of exercising or engaging in activities that are productive and useful for their well-being. It could also be helpful through finding things to occupy the little ones by taking them out of their comfort zones and engaging them in other more challenging activities.

Engaging children during the summer holidays is a fantastic opportunity to keep them active, creative, and happy.  

Here are fun and enjoyable ways to engage your children during the summer break:

  1. Outdoor water play: Set up a sprinkler, water balloons, or a slip-n-slide for some refreshing fun.
  2. Nature scavenger hunts: Organize scavenger hunts in parks or your backyard to explore nature.
  3. Visit local attractions: Take day trips to museums, zoos, aquariums, or amusement parks.
  4. Arts and crafts: Provide materials for drawing, painting, or making summer-themed crafts.
  5. Backyard camping: Pitch a tent in the backyard and enjoy a night of camping under the stars.
  6. Cooking and baking: Involve children in making summer snacks or ice cream treats.
  7. Outdoor sports: Play soccer, basketball, frisbee, or other outdoor sports together.
  8. Plant a garden: Start a small vegetable or flower garden and teach kids about nurturing plants.
  9. Library visits: Encourage reading by visiting the library and letting children choose books.
  10. Explore local trails: Go hiking or biking on nearby nature trails.
  11. Picnics in the park: Pack a picnic and spend a relaxing day in a nearby park.
  12. DIY science experiments: Conduct simple science experiments using household items.
  13. Learn a new hobby: Introduce children to hobbies like photography, painting, or gardening.
  14. Family bike rides: Go on family bike rides around the neighbourhood or local bike trails.
  15. Volunteer together: Participate in community service or charity projects as a family.
  16. Visit a farmer’s market: Explore a local farmer’s market to learn about fresh produce and support local businesses.
  17. Build a birdhouse or feeder: Engage in a woodworking project to attract birds to your backyard.
  18. Have a picnic. This is a great way to enjoy a meal outdoors and spend time together as a family. Pack a lunch and find a park or other scenic spot to enjoy your meal.
  19. Go camping. This is a great way to get back to nature and have some fun. If you’re not experienced campers, there are plenty of campgrounds that offer amenities like showers and flush toilets.
  20. Go to the zoo. This is a great way to see animals from all over the world. Many zoos have educational programs that teach kids about animals and their habitats.
  21. Create a summer journal: Encourage kids to write or draw about their summer adventures.
  22. Backyard Olympics: Organize friendly competitions with various backyard games.
  23. Science centres and planetariums: Visit science centres or planetariums for interactive learning.
  24. Make homemade popsicles: Experiment with different fruit flavours to make refreshing popsicles.
  25. Learn a new dance: Follow dance tutorials online and have a dance party at home.
  26. Star-gazing nights: Set up blankets and look at stars during a clear summer night.
  27. Learn to swim: Enrol children in swimming classes or spend time together at the pool.
  28. Family movie nights: Have movie nights with popcorn and watch family-friendly films.

These activities will keep your children engaged, happy, and active during the summer holidays while creating lasting memories for the whole family.

auto beach car desert

DEAR PARENT – Please customize the list based on your children’s interests and your local resources to ensure a fun-filled summer!

As of old: Be EMPOWERED and EXCEL!!  


Summer break is an excellent time for students to explore new hobbies, relax, and enhance their skills outside of academic commitments. Students and hobbies go hand in hand as hobbies play a crucial role in the overall development and well-being of students.

Here are some key points highlighting the importance of hobbies for students:

  1. Reduced Screen Time: Hobbies encourage students to spend time away from screens and electronics.
  2. Sense of Accomplishment: Completing a challenging project or mastering a new hobby instils a sense of accomplishment and motivation.
  3. Career Exploration: Hobbies can offer insights into potential career paths and interests that may influence future career choices.
  4. Academic Performance: Engaging in enjoyable activities and hobbies can positively impact students’ overall mood and focus, leading to better academic performance.
  5. Positive Mental Health: Hobbies can contribute to improved mental health by reducing stress and promoting a sense of purpose and joy.
  6. Coping Mechanism: Hobbies can serve as a healthy outlet for managing stress and emotions during challenging times.
  7. Diversified Interests: Having hobbies beyond academics makes students well-rounded individuals with diverse interests and experiences.
  8. Cultural and Artistic Appreciation: Engaging in hobbies like reading, music, or painting can lead to a deeper appreciation of cultural and artistic expressions.
  9. Personal Exploration: Hobbies provide a safe space for students to explore their identities, interests, and passions.
  10. Long-Term Fulfilment: Cultivating hobbies during student life can lead to lifelong pursuits that bring joy and fulfilment.

Overall, encouraging students to explore and pursue hobbies is essential for their holistic development and contributes to their personal growth, well-being, and future success in various aspects of life. Hobbies for high school students can be both enjoyable and beneficial, offering opportunities for personal growth, skill development, and relaxation. Here are some hobbies that high school students may consider: Here are some excellent hobbies for students to do during the summer break:

READING: Reading is a great way to relax, learn new things, and escape into another world. There are so many great books out there, so you’re sure to find something you’ll enjoy. Exploring various genres and books can expand knowledge and foster a love for literature.

WRITING: Writing is a creative outlet that can help you express yourself and your thoughts. Engaging in creative writing, journaling, or starting a blog allows self-expression and improves communication skills. Even more interesting is that you could start a journal, write short stories, or even try your hand at poetry.

LEARNING A NEW LANGUAGE: Learning a new language is a challenging but rewarding hobby. It can help you expand your horizons and open up new opportunities. There are many resources available to help you learn a new language, so you can find a method that works for you.

PLAYING A MUSICAL INSTRUMENT: Playing a musical instrument is a great way to express yourself creatively and relieve stress. It can also improve your hand-eye coordination and memory. There are many different instruments to choose from, so you can find one that you enjoy playing.

CODING and PROGRAMMING: Coding is a valuable skill that can be used in a variety of fields. It’s also a challenging and creative hobby that can help you develop your problem-solving skills. There are many online resources available to help you learn how to code.

VOLUNTEERING: Volunteering is a great way to give back to your community and make a difference in the world. It’s also a rewarding way to spend your summer break. There are many different volunteer opportunities available, so you can find one that interests you.

LEARNING A NEW SKILL: There are many different skills that you can learn, such as cooking, sewing, woodworking, or photography. Learning a new skill can be a fun and rewarding way to spend your summer break.

EXPLORING YOUR COMMUNITY: There are many great things to see and do in your community. Take some time to explore your neighbourhood, visit local museums and parks, or try out new restaurants.

GETTING OUTSIDE: Spending time in nature is a great way to relax and de-stress. Go for a hike, bike ride, or swim in the lake. You can also take up gardening or bird watching.

DRAWING or PAINTING: Developing artistic skills through visual arts and creative expression.

SPORTS: Participating in team sports or individual activities like tennis, swimming, or basketball promotes physical fitness and teamwork.

PHOTOGRAPHY: Capturing moments through photography and experimenting with different techniques.

COOKING and BAKING: Trying out new recipes and improving culinary skills.

GARDENING: Growing plants, flowers, or herbs, and learning about horticulture.

GRAPHIC DESIGN: Learning basic graphic design skills and creating digital art.

DIY CRAFTS: Engaging in various do-it-yourself projects and crafts.

FOREIGN LANGUAGES: Studying a new language or practicing language exchange with others.

FILM-MAKING: Creating short films or videos and learning video editing skills.

CHESS or BOARD GAMES: Playing strategic games to enhance critical thinking and problem-solving abilities.

YOGA and MEDITATION: Practising mindfulness for stress relief and mental well-being.

ASTRONOMY: Exploring the night sky and learning about stars and planets.

FASHION DESIGN: Creating and experimenting with fashion styles and designs.

PODCASTING: Starting a podcast on topics of interest to share knowledge and opinions.

CALLIGRAPHY: Improving handwriting skills and learning different calligraphy styles.

ROBOTICS: Exploring robotics and building simple robots or machines.

INTERIOR DESIGN: Decorating and designing living spaces and rooms.

PHOTO MANIPULATION: Creating artistic compositions through photo editing.

FITNESS AND EXERCISE: Participating in dance classes, yoga sessions, or fitness routines.

MAGIC TRICKS: Learning and performing magic tricks for entertainment.

Encouraging high school students to explore diverse hobbies can lead to personal enrichment, improved well-being, and the development of valuable skills that can benefit them both in their academic pursuits and future careers. It’s essential for students to find hobbies that align with their interests and passions, as these activities are more likely to bring joy and long-term fulfilment. These are just a few ideas for hobbies that students can do during the summer break. The most important thing is to find something that you enjoy and that you’re passionate about.



Summer break is an excellent time for students to explore new hobbies, relax, and enhance their skills outside of academic commitments. Students and hobbies go hand in hand as hobbies play a crucial role in the overall development and well-being of students.

Female photographer sticker, hobby illustration

Here are some key points highlighting the importance of hobbies for students:

  1. Stress Relief: Hobbies provide an escape from academic pressures and daily routines, offering students a way to relax and unwind.
  2. Enhanced Creativity: Engaging in hobbies like art, writing, or music fosters creativity and self-expression.
  3. Improved Time Management: Balancing academic responsibilities with hobbies teaches students valuable time management skills.
  4. Skill Development: Pursuing hobbies allows students to learn new skills and gain expertise in various areas outside of their studies.
  5. Social Interaction: Many hobbies provide opportunities for students to socialize, make new friends, and join communities with shared interests.
  6. Boosted Confidence: Success and progress in hobbies can boost students’ self-esteem and confidence.
  7. Healthy Lifestyle: Physical hobbies like sports, dancing, or hiking promote physical fitness and a healthier lifestyle.

Overall, encouraging students to explore and pursue hobbies is essential for their holistic development and contributes to their personal growth, well-being, and future success in various aspects of life.

Paint palette png sticker hobby

Here are 25 wonderful hobbies for students to consider during the summer break:

  1. OUTDOOR PHOTOGRAPHY: Capture the beauty of nature and explore different photography techniques.
  2. GARDENING: Grow your own plants, flowers, or vegetables and learn about horticulture.
  3. SWIMMING: Take swimming lessons or enjoy leisurely swims to stay active and beat the heat.
  4. PAINTING or DRAWING: Unleash your creativity and express yourself through art.
  5. COOKING and BAKING: Experiment with new recipes and improve your culinary skills.
  6. HIKING: Explore local trails and appreciate the great outdoors.
  7. READING: Dive into books that interest you, whether fiction or non-fiction.
  8. VOLUNTEER WORK: Engage in community service and give back to society.
  9. LEARNING A NEW INSTRUMENT: Pick up a musical instrument and learn to play it.
  10. BIRDWATCHING: Observe and identify various bird species in your area.
  11. WRITING: Start a journal, write short stories, or try your hand at poetry.
  12. YOGA and MEDITATION: Practice mindfulness and improve physical and mental well-being.
  13. DIY CRAFTS: Create handmade items or upcycle old ones for a personal touch.
  14. STARGAZING: Explore astronomy and learn about the night sky.
  15. LANGUAGE LEARNING: Study a new language using apps, online resources, or courses.
  16. INDOOR GARDENING: Grow plants and herbs indoors and learn about indoor gardening techniques.
  17. GEOCACHING: Enjoy a modern-day treasure hunt using GPS coordinates.
  18. CYCLING: Explore your neighbourhood or nearby trails on a bicycle.
  19. PODCASTING: Start your own podcast on a topic of interest to you.
  20. FITNESS and EXERCISE: Take up a sport, go to the gym, or practice home workouts.
  21. GRAPHIC DESIGN: Learn the basics of graphic design and create digital art.
  22. FILM-MAKING: Create short films or videos using your smartphone or camera.
  23. ORIGAMI: Learn the ancient art of paper folding and create intricate designs.
  24. CODING and PROGRAMMING: Explore the world of coding and develop simple applications.
  25. CALLIGRAPHY: Improve your handwriting and learn various calligraphy styles.

Remember, the best hobby is one that aligns with your interests and passions. Summer break is a great time to try something new, challenge yourself, and have fun while expanding your skills and knowledge.  



A hobby is an activity or interest that you engage in for pleasure, relaxation, and personal fulfilment during your free time. Hobbies are typically pursued outside of one’s regular work or professional commitments. People choose hobbies based on their interests, passions, and desired experiences. Hobbies can vary widely and may include anything from physical activities to creative pursuits, intellectual challenges, or social engagements.

Research has shown that hobbies offer numerous benefits, including stress relief, improved focus, skill development, and opportunities for social interactions. They are an essential part of life, allowing individuals to pursue their passions and maintain a healthy work-life balance. Choosing the right hobby can greatly enrich your life and provide you with a sense of fulfilment and satisfaction.

Engaging in hobbies can be a wonderful way to keep your mind active and stimulated.

Here are 15 hobbies that can help you stay mentally engaged:

  1. READING: Whether it’s fiction, non-fiction, or poetry, reading exposes your mind to new ideas and perspectives.
  2. WRITING: Keeping a journal, writing short stories, or even starting a blog can help improve your creativity and critical thinking skills.
  3. PUZZLE SOLVING: Engage in puzzles like crosswords, Sudoku, or brain teasers to challenge your problem-solving abilities.
  4. LEARNING A NEW LANGUAGE: Studying a new language enhances cognitive functions and improves memory.
  5. PLAYING A MUSICAL INSTRUMENT: Playing an instrument exercises your brain and enhances memory, concentration, and coordination.
  6. PAINTING OR DRAWING: Engaging in art promotes creativity and can be a great way to express yourself.
  7. COOKING OR BAKING: Trying out new recipes and experimenting with different ingredients keeps your mind active and engaged.
  8. GARDENING: Caring for plants and landscaping requires planning, problem-solving, and continuous learning.
  9. PHOTOGRAPHY: Capturing images and experimenting with composition exercises your creativity and observational skills.
  10. PLAYING STRATEGY GAMES: Games like chess, Go, or strategic board games challenge your mind and improve your decision-making abilities.
  11. MEDITATION: Practicing mindfulness and meditation can improve focus, reduce stress, and enhance overall mental clarity.
  12. DIY PROJECTS: Engaging in do-it-yourself projects can improve problem-solving skills and encourage creativity.
  13. ASTRONOMY: Learning about the stars, planets, and the cosmos can be intellectually stimulating and awe-inspiring.
  14. VOLUNTEERING: Engaging in volunteer work not only helps others but also gives you the opportunity to learn new skills and gain valuable experiences.
  15. CODING AND PROGRAMMING: Learning to code or working on programming projects can sharpen your analytical thinking and problem-solving abilities.
cascading water falls in woods

Remember, the key to keeping your mind active is to choose hobbies that genuinely interest you and challenge you mentally. The enjoyment you get from these activities will make them more rewarding and effective in keeping your mind sharp.



A SYNONYM is a word or phrase that means exactly or nearly the same as another word or phrase in the same language.
The exercise is designed to help you prepare for the verbal and written sections of many assessment and entrance exams. By completing the exercises, you will also increase your vocabulary and refine your knowledge of words.
Select the word that most nearly means the word provided.

  1. DUPE most nearly means . . . .
    A. rancher
    B. trick
    C. simpleton
    D. drug
  2. STIGMA most nearly means . . . .
    A. stain
    B. trial
    C. difficulty
    D. holiness
  3. RESIDE most nearly means . . . .
    A. remain
    B. home
    C. dwell
    D. sediment
  4. COVETOUS most nearly means . . . .
    A. quiet
    B. sneaky
    C. lurking
    D. greedy
  5. ABIDE most nearly means . . . .
    A. endure
    B. hate
    C. attendance
    D. live
  6. SHREWD most nearly means . . . .
    A. intractable
    B. mean
    C. astute
    D. intelligent
  7. FETTER most nearly means . . . .
    A. rancid
    B. praise
    C. hamper
    D. persist
  8. FLAGRANT most nearly means . . . .
    A. vibrant
    B. glaring
    C. vicious
    D. pleasant
  9. MITIGATE most nearly means . . . .
    A. relieve
    B. blend
    C. defend
    D. confuse
  10. RAIL most nearly means . . . .
    A. scold
    B. push
    C. try
    D. punish
  11. RALLY most nearly means . . . .
    A. demonstrate
    B. muster
    C. course
    D. truly
  12. ABJECT most nearly means . . . .
    A. indigent
    B. desire
    C. despondent
    D. extreme
  13. BESPOKE most nearly means . . . .
    A. gentle
    B. quiet
    C. tailored
    D. handsome
  14. DIFFIDENT most nearly means . . . .
    A. apathetic
    B. shy
    C. arrogant
    D. quarrelsome
  15. PROFFER most nearly means . . . .
    A. mendicant
    B. wastrel
    C. predict
    D. tender
  16. MORDANT most nearly means . . . .
    A. dead
    B. gruesome
    C. fetid
    D. caustic
  17. CHURLISH most nearly means . . . .
    A. childish
    B. boorish
    C. tempestuous
    D. disorderly
  18. ANTEDILUVIAN most nearly means . . . .
    A. antiquated
    B. parched
    C. nonsectarian
    D. nonsensical
  19. PICAYUNE most nearly means . . . .
    A. shy
    B. arrogant
    C. quarrelsome
    D. shy  


  1. B. To DUPE means to deceive or to trick.
  2. A. STIGMA means a mark of shame or discredit, or a stain.
  3. C. To RESIDE means to occupy a place as one’s home, or to dwell.
  4. D. COVETOUS means having an inordinate desire for wealth, or greedy.
  5. A. To ABIDE means to endure without yielding, or to withstand.
  6. C. SHREWD means marked by clever awareness, or astute.
  7. C. To FETTER means to hamper, or to restrain.
  8. B. FLAGRANT means obviously wrong or immoral; glaring means painfully obvious.
  9. A. MITIGATE means to make less severe or painful, or to relieve.
  10. A. To RAIL means to scold in harsh, abusive language.
  11. B. To RALLY means to arouse for action, or to muster.
  12. C. ABJECT means cast down in spirit, or utterly hopeless; despondent means having lost all hope.
  13. C. BESPOKE means custom-made; tailored also means custom- made.
  14. B. DIFFIDENT means shy or lacking in confidence.
  15. D. To PROFFER means to put something forward for acceptance, or to tender.
  16. D. MORDANT means biting or caustic in means or speech.
  17. B. CHURLISH means resembling an ill-bred or vulgar person, or boorish.
  18. A. Antediluvian means so ancient that it could have come before the time of the flood and Noah’s ark or antiquated.
  19. C. PICAYUNE means trivial or of little value; paltry means trivial or meager

As of old:

. . . . . . Be EMPOWERED and EXCEL


Life is full of opportunities and possibilities, but it’s up to us to take the initiative and push ourselves beyond our comfort zones. It is in those moments of challenge that we truly discover our potential, grow as individuals, and achieve remarkable things.

Challenging yourself means setting goals that may seem daunting or even impossible at first. It means stepping outside of your familiar territory and embracing the unknown. It requires a mindset of resilience, determination, and a willingness to learn and adapt along the way.

When we challenge ourselves, we open doors to new experiences and opportunities for personal and professional growth. We discover hidden talents and strengths we never knew existed. It is through challenges that we develop new skills, gain confidence, and become more resilient in the face of adversity.

Consider the quotes below and see that they say about you:

  1. “Believe in yourself and all that you are. Know that there is something inside you that is greater than any obstacle.” – Christian D. Larson
  2. “The only limit to our realization of tomorrow will be our doubts of today.” – Franklin D. Roosevelt
  3. “Success is not final, failure is not fatal: It is the courage to continue that counts.” – Winston Churchill
  4. “Don’t limit your challenges. Challenge your limits.” – Unknown
  5. “The greater the obstacle, the more glory in overcoming it.” – Molière
  6. “The biggest adventure you can take is to live the life of your dreams.” – Oprah Winfrey
  7. “You are capable of more than you know. Choose a goal that seems right for you and strive to be the best, however hard the path. Aim high. Behave honorably. Prepare to be alone at times, and to endure failure. Persist! The world needs all you can give.” – E. O. Wilson
  8. “Success is not just about making money. It’s about making a difference, challenging yourself, and becoming the best version of yourself.” – Unknown
  9. “Dream big and dare to fail.” – Norman Vaughan
  10. “The only way to do great work is to love what you do.” – Steve Jobs
  11. “Life begins at the end of your comfort zone.” – Neale Donald Walsch
  12. “Your life does not get better by chance, it gets better by change.” – Jim Rohn
  13. “The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.” – Eleanor Roosevelt
  14. “If you want something you’ve never had, you must be willing to do something you’ve never done.” – Thomas Jefferson
  15. “It’s not about the destination, it’s about the journey. Challenge yourself, enjoy the process, and the results will come.” – Unknown
  16. “The only person you are destined to become is the person you decide to be.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson
  17. “Challenge yourself to be better than you were yesterday.” – Unknown
  18. “You never know what you can do until you try, and you never try unless you dare.” – Unknown
  19. “Success is not measured by the heights you attain, but by the obstacles you overcome.” – Booker T. Washington
  20. “You have within you right now, everything you need to deal with whatever the world can throw at you.” – Brian Tracy

From the quotes above: Did you feel challenged?

Challenges also help us break free from the monotony of routine and complacency. They ignite our passion, fuel our motivation, and push us to reach higher and strive for excellence. They inspire us to go beyond what is expected and redefine our limits.

However, challenging yourself is not without its obstacles. It requires perseverance, discipline, and a positive mindset. There will be moments of self-doubt and setbacks along the way. But it is in those moments that we must remember why we embarked on this journey in the first place and keep pushing forward.

So, how can we challenge ourselves?

It starts with setting meaningful and realistic goals. Break down those goals into smaller, actionable steps, and celebrate every milestone along the way. Surround yourself with a support system of like-minded individuals who encourage and motivate you. Seek out new experiences, take on projects that stretch your abilities, and never stop learning.

Remember, growth and fulfilment come from stepping outside of your comfort zone. Challenge yourself to overcome your fears, embrace uncertainty, and seize every opportunity that comes your way. Embrace the unknown with excitement rather than fear, and trust that you have the strength and resilience to overcome any obstacles that may arise.

Dear Reader, let us embrace challenges as opportunities for growth and self-discovery. Challenge yourself to go beyond what is comfortable, to strive for greatness, and to become the best version of yourself. Embrace the journey, celebrate your achievements, and remember that the biggest rewards often come from the challenges we willingly undertake.



A SYNONYM is a word or phrase that means exactly or nearly the same as another word or phrase in the same language,

The exercise is designed to help you prepare for the verbal and written sections of many assessment and entrance exams. By completing the exercises you will also increase your vocabulary and refine your knowledge of words.

Which of these words is closest in meaning to the word provided?

1.  REMOTE:       A. Automatic      B. Distant            C. Savage             D. Mean

2. DETEST:           A. Argue               B. Hate                 C. Discover          D. Reveal

3. GRACIOUS:    A. Pretty              B. Clever              C. Pleasant          D. Present

4. PREDICT:         A. foretell            B. decide             C. prevent           D. discover

5. PENSIVE:         A. oppressed     B. caged               C. thoughtful     D. happy

6. BANISH:          A. exile                 B. hate                  C. fade                  D. clean

7. FRAUD:           A. malcontent   B. argument       C. imposter         D. clown

8. JOVIAL:            A. incredulous   B. merry               C. revolting         D. dizzy

9. INDIFFERENT: A. neutral          B. unkind             C. precious          D. mean

10. SIMULATE: A. excite              B. imitate             C. trick                  D. dislike

11. CHARISMA:   A. ghost               B. force                 C. charm              D. courage

12. APPORTION: A. divide            B. decide             C. cut                     D. squabble

13. GENERIC:     A. general           B. cheap               C. fresh                D. elderly

14. QUALM:       A. distress           B. impunity         C. persevere      D. scruple

15. REVERIE:       A. sadness          B. enjoyment    C. daydream      D. curio


1.            B. Remote means faraway, or distant.

2.            B. To detest means to feel intense or violent dislike, or to hate.

3.            C. Gracious means to be pleasant or considerate in social interactions.

4.            A. To predict means to declare in advance or to foretell.

5.            C. Pensive means moodily or dreamily thoughtful.

6.            A. To banish means to drive out from home or country, or to exile.

7.            C. A fraud is someone who is not what he or she pretends to be, or an imposter.

8.            B. Jovial means good humoured or merry

9.            A. To be indifferent is to be marked by impartiality or to be neutral

10.          B. To simulate is to assume the outward appearance of, or to imitate

11.          C. Charisma is magnetic charm or appeal

12.          A. To apportion is to divide and share out

13.          A. Generic means having the characteristic of a whole group, or general

14.          D. A qualm is a feeling of uneasiness about a moral issue, or a scruple

15.          C. A reverie means the state of being lost in thought, or a daydream



Road to Commitment

“We create our fate every day . . . most of the ills we suffer from are directly traceable to our own behavior.” ― Henry Miller

No matter how committed one is to a particular course of action or set of values, often our own behaviours get in the way. In effect, we might want something but actually do the very things that stop us achieving it. A good example from daily life is the commitment we make to go on a diet after the excesses of the festive season, only to have our ambition thwarted as we reach for one of our favourite eats.

Leaders can behave in a similar fashion in their professional roles. For instance, a school leader might be committed to the principle that each child should be treated with respect. Yet, when he or she sees colleagues treating pupils without due respect, the school leader ignores the behaviours, even though they run counter to his or her belief system. According to Kegan and Laskow Lahey – in their book The Way We Talk Can Change The Way We Work – these situations can arise because there is a competing commitment working in opposition to the original one. In this case, it might be that the leader wants to :

  • be seen as a supporter of colleagues.
  • avoid confrontation.

In a sense, the competing commitment trumps the original one. And of course, behind this competing commitment is usually an assumption. For instance, in this case, it is that if the school leader challenges colleagues over their disrespectful treatment of children then some or all of the following might happen:

  • Colleagues’ goodwill will be lost.
  • Colleagues’ respect for the leader will go.

Thus, the team spirit that the leader has so carefully built up will be damaged.

This paradox of the leader’s competing behaviour can be seen in a four-part Competing Commitments grid chart identifying four key scenarios:

1. Commitment

I am committed to the value or the importance of . . . the principle that each child should be treated with respect.

Now consider these scenarios  . . .

  • What I’m doing or not doing that prevents my commitment from being fully realized.
  • When I see colleagues treating pupils without due respect, I ignore the behaviours, even though they run counter to my belief system.

2. Competing Commitments

I may also be committed to . . . being seen as a supporter of colleagues avoiding confrontation at all costs.

3. Big Assumption

I assume that if . . . I challenge colleagues over their disrespectful treatment of children, then some or all of the following might happen:

  • colleagues’ goodwill will be lost.
  • colleagues’ respect for me as a leader will go.
  • the team spirit that I have so carefully built up will be damaged.

The authors recommend a four-step process to overcome our BIG ASSUMPTIONS:

  1. Observe ourselves in relation to the big assumption.
  2. Actively look for experiences that cast doubt on the big assumption.
  3. Explore the history of the big assumption; and
  4. Design and run a safe, modest test of the big assumption.

In essence, our actions can run counter to our original commitment. Indeed, our actions themselves can be based on a counter-commitment behind which is a big assumption. Only by first addressing our big assumptions can we start changing our behaviours in order to align them with our original number 1 beliefs and commitments.

red-outside-grass-sport.jpgFrom Kegan and Laskow Lahey’s work, it is clear that we have to attack both our assumptions and our competing commitments in order to stop sabotaging our own principles and beliefs. In the example teased out above, this might be about questioning the big assumption and/or developing different strategies.

For instance:

  • Is it really true that colleagues’ goodwill will be lost or respect will go or the team spirit will be damaged?

Or it might be about:

  • Can I come up with strategies that will keep colleagues on board with me and still allow me to remain true to my principles?

Or it could be:

  • I must remain true to my principles and not let my behaviours impede what is important.

This process does not necessarily lead to easy answers. However, it does let us reflect deeply on our own behaviours and actions and how they can get in the way of what is important for an individual, colleagues and the organization as a whole.

Challenging Oneself


The Challenge

Molly Cain, writing for Forbes, has identified six Ways To Achieve Any Goal 

LOOK AT IT: A goal that you can actually see is massively more powerful than a goal you write down on a checklist.

TELL PEOPLE: Making yourself accountable to your friends and family is one of the best ways to reach your goals. Sure, it’s uncomfortable to share your setbacks. But when you do, you’re going to get emails from friends who have experienced the same and they’ll get your mind back on track. And when you tell them about the milestones you reach, you’re going to get applause from people wishing they were you and reaching those same goals too.

When you tell people your goals, they will jump in the boat with you and help you get there. You will be shocked by the support you’ll get from your network. You’ll be even more surprised by the people who come out of the woodwork to join you in your journey or privately cheer you on, knowing what you’re going through.

BREAK IT UP: Many people abandon goals because they’re just too dang big. If you’ve done this to yourself, stop now. Change your game plan. The best way is to break it up into bite-sized chunks.

Select milestones to get there and make each of those a tiny goal. Breaking your big goal into small ones will make it a more feasible option for you.

SET A DATE: One of the best ways to knock out a goal is to put it on your calendar. If you put a stake in the ground and impose a date on yourself, you’re much more likely to reach it.

BE REALISTIC: I’m sure if I asked everyone here, you’d all be just as interested in magically obtaining a bazillion dollars or finding the cure for cancer as I would. But there are some goals that are just too out of this world.. Simple but true…you’re more likely to reach goals that you realistically set for yourself. Don’t set yourself up for failure by letting your dreams get bigger than your abilities. That’s not to say don’t set high goals for yourself, just make sure they’re attainable.

COMMIT TO YOURSELF: Hey folks, there’s only one person in this goal-setting process that matters. You! You’re the one who has to put the hours in the work.

  • You’re the one who needs to stay late at the office to finish that task for your boss so you can score the promotion.
  • You’re the only one receiving the paycheck that will eventually pay you out of credit card debt. It’s all on you, my dear friend.


Committing Yourself

There’s a great quote out there that says: “It’s funny how day by day, nothing changes but when you look back everything is different.”

It is really a paradox that one year from now, you’ll be one year older, no matter what. What can you do with your goals today that will make looking back to today feel really different and really satisfying?

Commit to yourself and then re-commit yourself each time you fall because that definitely happens along the way.

Our commitment to change is often canceled by another commitment we hold that has the effect of preventing the change.

pexels-photo-943747.jpegHowever, when all is said and done, the only person with that commitment is YOU. This is the only way you can challenge your own behaviours. Hence, CHALLENGE YOURSELF first!

Good luck in all your endeavours.

As of old: Be EMPOWERED and EXCEL.