WLC grad designs SAT prep course for school

WILTON – Wilton-

Lyndeborough Cooperative senior Jon Knowles is the class go-to kind of guy, an outspoken leader.

“I think they use me as an example,” he said recently.

But he saw a need, and did something about it: For his senior project, he created a lesson plan and schedule for an SAT preparatory course.

“When I was a junior, I wanted a prep course through the school,” he said. “But there wasn’t one, so I was filling a need.”

While Knowles was doing research, “I found the information covered on the tests, and came up with a study guide and some work sheets,” he said. “It’s easier for a variety of students but specific enough for the skilled.”

Guidance Director Amanda Koviliv called the project “awesome.”

Knowles will attend Bates College in Maine this fall and will major in economics.

While he works 25 hours a week at Market Basket, he said he plans to spend the summer “pretty much spending time with friends. We’re all going to different colleges.” He is one of the few going out of state.

Knowles credited his personality, his way of doing things, to “a weird childhood” and home preschooling with a grandmother that brought him to first grade ahead of many others.

Knowles was born in Arizona.

“When I was 2, my parents split, and I bounced around with my dad,” he said. They lived in Pennsylvania, Texas and several places in New Hampshire before landing in Wilton when he was about 4. “I spent a lot of my childhood in a car.”

He said his father was in a relationship that brought him to Wilton.

“She sort of raised me, kept me on track and in school, and I’ve kept in touch with her,” Knowles said. “It was sort of a weird childhood. It wasn’t all bad, just not normal.”

His grandmother was the one who helped him excel, he said.

Knowles has no favorite subject, but he likes math and English. He is the chapter president of the National Honor Society and vice president of the class, “which is a pretty obscure office,” he said.

While Knowles said he enjoys sports, “I didn’t have time with school and work. I just play pickup kind of things.”

He said he’s a good student, “but not out of school. I’m glad I went to a small school where you feel like you’re not a number. It has a down side; everyone knows everyone, and when you do something really embarrassing, everybody knows it. It makes it easier to get along with people – character building.”

Knowles spent a summer session at the St. Paul’s School Advanced Studies Program in Concord and advised “any junior who has the chance to go to take it.” The students there, he said, “were the most dedicated group I’ve ever met. It is a good practice for college, and made me more confident for senior year.”

He added, “Senior year isn’t a break. It’s probably more intense than junior year. You’ve got to push through it.”

His advice to underclassmen: “Even the most mundane things are important. Have a good work ethic. Don’t let things slide. College isn’t for everyone – look at technical and trade schools. If I wasn’t going to college, I’d probably be an automobile mechanic.”

And, he said, “Enjoy your time with your friends.”

That is what he is going to do.