Recent Tutoring Session Reviews
"During this session, the student worked on his personal narrative essay writing skills. He did an excellent job recalling the purpose and elements of a personal narrative essay. He even recalled how imagery can be employed as a powerful tool in personal narrative writing to stimulate the reader's senses and make him or her feel like they are "in the story." After reviewing the purpose, narrative elements, and structure of a personal narrative, I presented him with a list of possible writing topics for his next personal narrative. I chose a writing topic for him, so he would have at least fifteen minutes of free-writing time. I had him write about a time of change or transition and whether or not he grew or learned anything from the change he had to experience. He chose to write about his transition from 2nd to 3rd grade. His rough draft was lacking in rich details. He also forgot to include paragraph breaks and transitions in his narrative. As soon as I reminded him of both, he knew exactly where his paragraph breaks should have been and where his narrative needed more detail. Overall, I was pleased with how much he retained about personal narrative essay writing, and I think he did a nice job during this session."
"During today's session, we began by reviewing the essays that I had asked the student to write. Both essays showed a good deal of improvement. They both showed good organization. I was pleased to see this, since I feel that organization had been the biggest problem with his writing until now. After we finished looking at these essays, he moved on to writing an essay, with the emphasis being on further improving organization. Specifically, I wanted him to work on topic sentences for his paragraphs. He ultimately was unable to finish this essay, but he got a good start, and I feel that the exercise was very helpful to him."
"The student made marked progress on her essay this week. At the end of last week's session, I had assigned her a two page essay (she had previously practiced writing one page pieces). I thought she did an excellent job this week at fleshing out her ideas into an ample, well-organized, and detailed essay. I could tell she had heeded my advice from last week to "show, vs. tell," explaining her ideas using vivid examples and anecdotes, giving her essay a strong, narrative flow. There were a few grammar errors, which I went over with her. She had made mistakes using appositives, but by the end she was able to catch and correct these errors herself. I also encouraged her to flesh out her essay's conclusion, which still needed work. However, overall, I thought she made significant progress since last week. She proudly shared with me that she had received a 98% on a recent English class writing assignment. I can definitely see the improvement in her skills. For next week, I gave her a choice of prompts for another two page essay. I strongly encouraged her to hand write the essay, instead of using her laptop, in order to mimic test conditions."