About Focus on Learning

Focus on Learning is a locally owned education center for high school students who want a boost to prepare for college success.  Our tutors are experienced teachers who help students improve their academic skills. They are also test prep coaches who show students how to maximize their scores on the ACT and SAT, two vitally important college entrance exams.  College is becoming more competitive and expensive.  While grades are known to be the single best predictor for college success, many colleges continue to rely more heavily on  ACT and SAT scores.  High grades and high test scores create an unbeatable ticket for college admission. 

Both the ACT and SAT are “teachable” tests, and we have the experience and know-how to show students how to significantly improve their test scores.  We’ve been succeeding now for over 30 years!  Students can schedule one-on-one sessions or participate in small classes: 4-Hour Jump Start,  12-Hour ACT Boot Camp (February and June test), and 20-Hour ACT Prep Class.

We believe that high school students benefit from ACT coaching, and we work with teachers to train them to become ACT Coaches (Teachers as ACT Coaches or TAC) and show how the ACT can be integrated into their classroom curricula (Teaching for ACT Success or TFS).  We offer on-site classes and workshops.  We also offer long-distance ACT prep via Zoom.


  • Develop effective strategies for reading, writing, math, and science
  • Learn critical STEM skills in math and science
  • Build self-confidence
  • Develop test-taking skills that lead to success on ACT and SAT
  • Feel pride in effort and persistence
  • Exceed expectations

Introducing Tom Scharenborg

Tom Scharenborg's portrait

My Background

Hello! My name is Thomas Scharenborg, but most people call me Tutor Tom, and I am excited to get to know you and your academic goals!

I have a B.S. degree from the University of Missouri-Columbia in Physics, with minor(s) emphasizing: Engineering, Mathematics, Political Science, and Fine Art Photography. I also hold a Master’s Degree (M.Ed.) Master of Arts in Education with Curriculum and Instruction Emphasis with STEM Concentration through Adams State University.

My Expertise

I work with teachers on curriculum development, students & teachers for test preparation, & students one-on-one. My goal is to help students learn how to study effectively in their own way and become lifelong learners. My expertise is rooted in STEAM-based learning, which introduces learners to the relationships between: Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, & Mathematics.

Our Business was built by the Best!

Ene-Kaja Chippendale, Ph.D.

Ene-Kaja Chippendale, Ph.D.

President of Focus on Learning

ACT English/Reading Expert
Gary Moss, Ph.D.

Gary Moss, Ph.D.

ACT Math/Science Expert

Focus on Learning Team

Our teachers show students how to learn.

Learning Styles Matter

Left Brain Thinkers

Left Brain learners rule the classroom. School schedules pose no problems because they are very time conscious. Assignments and test dates are remembered and even neatly entered into assignments books. Verbal and analytical, left brainers readily learn sequential skills : phonics, grammar rules, multiplication tables make total sense. Left brainers are verbal and enjoy reading and writing, building strong vocabularies in the process. Test questions make sense to them. They like to talk, debate, and argue. They follow multiple directions well and take good notes. The classroom environment is their natural home. Left brainers become our lawyers, neurologists, accountants, journalists , teachers, politicians, bookkeepers and bankers.

Right Brain Thinkers

Right Brain learners view the traditional classroom as a foreign land. Visual and spontaneous, they have little sense of time. Assignments are forgotten and test dates not remembered. Nonverbal learners, right brainers struggle mightily with routine classroom tasks: phonics and grammar make no sense, memorization of rote facts is difficult, spelling is hopeless, punctuation is ignored, and the meaning of questions remains an ongoing puzzle. Note taking is problematic. Right brainers only learn what they understand. Out-of-the box thinkers, they are not verbal but creative and intuitive, often giving the right answer without being able to explain how they got it. Right brainers are our artists, musicians, designers, architects, athletes, builders, surgeons and software designers.

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