Recent Tutoring Session Reviews
"The student and I went over some ISEE problems. We also practiced converting novel situations into algebraic equations. For example what equation would you use to figure out how much to charge for something in which someone else keeps a certain percentage. He was able to get the equation when he made explicit the process he was using in his head to figure the problem out. For example when I asked him how he figured out he needed to multiply the remaining percentage by the final price, he realized he needed to subtract the percentage from 100 and include that in the equation. This sort of practice increases his awareness of his own mathematical thought processes and prepares him for the methodical thinking necessary in solving word problems."
"The student and I spent this lesson talking about the essay. First, we looked at the sample essays in the SAT book, and talked about what made them good or bad. Next, we discussed brainstorming, and looked through many of the sample essay questions throughout the book, pausing each time to discuss possible relevant examples and thesis statements. Following that, we spent 25 minutes on a timed in class essay. I wrote one as well as an example of pacing and structure/writing in general. Afterwards, we finished by discussing her essay, and what could be changed to improve it."
"Devoted today to the Science section, the only ACT portion we had yet to cover at all. Began with a breakdown of the section - types of questions, drawing conclusions, and working with a basic understanding of the scientific method and experimental design. After we covered the basics, we worked together on sample Science questions for the remainder of the session. Overall performance was very good, especially with the comparing/contrasting viewpoints. There was some difficulty cutting through the complexity of experiment questions to find the fundamental reasoning questions, though mistakes were always recognized immediately. Will revisit and gradually de-scaffold prompting before post-test."
"In my 2.5 hours with the student we mainly worked on editing 4 mini-college application essays that he wrote as practice for his High School counselor. They were the standard general prompts (who has influenced you, what could you contribute to a college's diversity, etc.). We worked on getting his writing to be more specific and focused, with less generalizations and more interesting details from his life. We also practiced writing in a more formal tone, and what sort of phrases should be omitted from these types of essays (i.e. repeated rhetorical questions). Then we spent the last 45 minutes going through the questions that he missed on his first ACT Reading section, and discussing why they were wrong/how he could have found the correct answer."
"The student and I went over more grammar for the exam and two-variable equations for his forthcoming Algebra quiz. We also went over his homework (to do pre-writing for a timed essay) and the student wrote the essay. We discussed what makes a good support in an essay. The student's ideas are great."
"The student and I went over several of his quizzes and homework assignments from earlier in the course, and worked through the questions he had gotten wrong together in preparation for his exam tonight. We had never worked together on returns to scale and economies/ diseconomies of scale but there were questions relating to that, so I gave him a brief overview of the concept. He has made considerable progress in terms of drawing and using graphs to visualize and solve problems."