Celebrity Flashcards

Posted on Tuesday, March, 8th, 2011 at 12:00 pm by Dr. Nancy Berk   (4 comments)

I knew my friend Akil Bello, a test prep expert, was onto something big when he tweeted the following brilliant message today…

Word of the day: turpitude – wickedness, vice, vileness, wrongdoing…CBS fired Charlie Sheen for moral turpitude. #vocab #life #SAT #GRE

I’m now hoping we can partner to create a surefire way to increase SAT vocabulary scores in a socially relevant way–


Here’s a sneak preview of some other winning cards.

SAT Word: Peculate – embezzle or steal: A fancy schmancy jeweler has accused Lindsay Lohan of peculating a necklace.

SAT Word: Chanteuse – a female singer of popular songs: My dog’s howling suggests Kim Kardashian is no chanteuse.

SAT Word: Simper – smile coquettishly, smirk, giggle: Victoria Beckham rarely simpers.

SAT Word: Peckish – hungry: I strongly suspect every emaciated Real Housewife of Beverly Hills, New York City, New Jersey, Orange County, Washington D.C., and Atlanta,  is a bit peckish.

More to come, after I phone TMZ, Dictionary.com, and College Board. I feel a start-up coming on…

© 2011 Nancy Berk


Bed, Bath and Beyond Embarrassing: Dorm Decorating Tips From My Son

Posted on Monday, February, 28th, 2011 at 9:07 am by Dr. Nancy Berk   (4 comments)

Last week USA Today College posted advice for dorm decorating that would make students “feel at home”. Inexpensive tips from paint color to flameless candles, and lace trim to glass vessels for nail polish, transformed drab dorms into shabby chic cool. While I was ready to move in, it was apparent these beautiful solutions wouldn’t make my college-bound kid feel at home. Have you seen his room? Let’s just say, he won’t be using accent pillows until there’s a relationship and a commitment pushing him into it. Here’s the tips he’d give for preventing home sickness and creating a room that feels like the one he’s leaving behind.

1. Eliminate the middle man and forget the hangers. Why create an extra step? Place all clothing on the floor where it can be easily accessed for wearing and laundering.

2. Mountain Dew cans, when creatively stacked, can double as dorm sculptures.

3. Leave all academic paperwork strewn around the room. It will remind you of your primary mission–learning. When nagged by neat roommates, emphasize that some people have time to clean, others make studying a priority.

4. Forget about under-the-bed storage boxes. While clever, they only slow down your ability to kick stuff under there.

5. Don’t be too hard on yourself. It’s not a mess if you can still find your electronics.

© 2011 Nancy Berk


Parent Alert: The Side Effects of Early Decision Acceptance

Posted on Wednesday, February, 23rd, 2011 at 12:18 pm by Dr. Nancy Berk   (5 comments)

It happens right around the time you hear those voices telling you to fill out the FAFSA. Have you noticed everything unpleasant is linked to an acronym? Sure, the family’s left SATs behind, but the winter’s long and dreary. SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder) doesn’t help, although you can buy a light for that. January and February are difficult months for parents of smug college-bound kids because that’s when EDA surfaces. Early Decision Attitude occurs after the month-long euphoria of getting into the college of choice. It is characterized by a change in sleep and study habits (A LOT LESS!) and accompanied by the familiar phrase “RELAX, I’m already in college”. The symptoms of EDA are often exacerbated when the student sports university logo apparel. While EDA is usually normal, parents who let down their guard can be as surprised as their early decision students (Yes, acceptance letters are based on continued outstanding performance.). So, keep an eye open and the light on your senior. Better safe than sorry and sad.

© 2011 Dr Nancy Berk


Posted on Saturday, February, 19th, 2011 at 3:11 pm by Dr. Nancy Berk   (2 comments)


To: University Faculty and Staff

From: Office of Admissions

Date: September 1, 2011

Re: Tiger Cub on Campus

Be advised that during Freshmen Move-In Day, a tiger cub was spotted on campus. While this is a harmless creature, faculty should proceed with caution as tiger cubs are often closely followed by Tiger Moms. Should you see a Tiger Mom, please refrain from mentioning anything that resembles fun and extracurricular activities. The term “Social Mixers” can trigger attacks and “Spring Break” once resulted in the hospitalization of an R.A.

While we do not anticipate any serious campus threat, it is always wise to be vigilant in the university setting. Jungle animal parents can pose hidden dangers to your well-being and teaching efficacy.  Other types of jungle animal problem parents are listed below.

Continue reading

$ticker $hock

Posted on Saturday, February, 19th, 2011 at 12:11 am by Dr. Nancy Berk   (1 comment)

It fell out of the most important letter of the year.  A thin adhesive sticker tucked inside the anxiously awaited university acceptance letter.

“Mom, I got in!” my son exclaimed. “Now you can get off my back.”

I might have cried but I was too busy thanking a higher power for giving me my life back.  The admissions office insisted I didn’t owe them that phone call.  Like proud parents everywhere, I took the highly coveted university decal mobile.  Clinging to the rear window of our SUV, the victory sticker symbolized closure from a process I thought would never end.  This would be the last and most expensive decal on the journey of parenthood.  Soon the nest and the bank account would be empty.

“What will you do with your time now that you won’t have to nag him to write essays and study SAT words?” my mother asked.

Continue reading

Copyright 2013, Nancy Berk Media, LLC