Recent Tutoring Session Reviews
"Today we finished our overview of all of the concepts that the student will see on the test. He has done very well and I expect good things from him when he takes the test. Going forward my plan is to review concepts that were more difficult for him and review more vocabulary."
"Did advanced problems using the Order of Operations. Completed a Verbal Reasoning practice test. Did a portion of the Quantitative Reasoning of the placement exam."
"This session, I gave the students 3 timed practice tests. During the first hour, they completed an 18-minute Verbal Reasoning test. We went over the vocabulary issues they had, I gave them a homework assignment -- they each already have to read for school, so I asked them to write down all the words they find that they don't know, and to match their parts up to a root/suffix/prefix list I gave them. Next they did a 15-question/15-minute Reading Comprehension test. They each missed 2 questions. We found that when they looked to the passages to support their answers, they were able to correct themselves. I'll keep timing them on passages so that they'll learn to plan for this. For the second hour, they did a 25-minute/25-question Math Achievement test. They each missed about 5 questions, which is still a great score. We started going over the missed questions -- I asked them to teach me how to break the problems down, which we'll continue with next week. Next week, I'd like to see how they do with the essay portion."
"I spoke with the student and her parents about their new goals for our sessions together. We decided that we will shift our focus from grammar and writing mechanics to preparing her for the upcoming placement exam in November. We discussed the areas in which the student needs additional support, including reading comprehension and general test-taking strategies for the verbal sections of the exam. She and I spent about one hour working through reading comprehension passages, using the strategy of "active" reading (making a mental picture, predicting, and connecting). We also discussed the benefits of reading the questions before reading the passage, referring back to the text for specific questions such as "vocabulary in context" and eliminating answers that fall into categories such as "half-wrong, all-wrong", unrelated to/beyond information given, and strong language such as "always" and "never". We worked briefly on distinguishing between fact and opinion, as well as determining the author's purpose and finding the main idea."
"Did more math problems from placement exam prep book; reviewed essay that the student had done as "homework" from last session."
"This was our first meeting. The student had recently completed an assessment exam and did very well on it. We will focus on math to begin with, particularly some topics that were on the test that he had not yet learned about, such as fractions, averages, and word problems. His process-of-elimination skills are great, and he did a good job working through the exercises I gave him. I also plan to spend time going over test prep with him."
"This was a very productive session. As I have asked the student to take a practice test before our next session, we went over timing first--how each section is timed differently so the pacing will be different each time. We then did three or four sample questions from each section under a time constraint. These questions were intentionally a little above his level, but he still answered at least half correctly and worked through all of them in the given time. We also looked at two sample reading passages and I asked him simply to talk me through the main ideas of each passage. From here we looked at a vocab list that I drew up based on practice tests. We worked through the first column, defining the words, and I asked him to write a sentence with each word before our next session. We then began working on mathematics--he had completed the fractions worksheets that I had assigned and we went through more problems dealing with variables, translating verbal problems into equations, and number lines. He definitely showed a grasp on each by the end. We quickly discussed how to outline an essay. After he takes a practice test, we will see which areas have him the most trouble (of the areas we know that he should be capable in based on his performance so far). Overall, a really good session."
"I reviewed rules for essay writing and the time constraints on the test. We talked about brainstorming and time management and I provided a checklist for approaching the essay portion of the test. He also did a timed-write on the topic in his test prep book. We then reviewed his answers to the verbal (synonyms) on the practice portion of the test and assigned him the goal of going through the ones he missed and writing down the word on index card with the definition on the back. Some questions where the words in the answer choices were hard, he will find and define those as well. Then we reviewed his answers to the first quantitative section and worked through the ones he missed. He enjoyed working through these on my white board and learned some new strategies to solve some of the more difficult problems. In the next session, we talked about reviewing reading comprehension answers and some strategies for working through those problems, as well as practicing vocabulary."
"Today was our first session, a diagnostic exposure to all the topics covered on the test. We examined examples from each section, in order to gauge our continued work together. Towards the end of the session, I focused specifically on probability problems, and finding area in different shapes."
"The student and I went over the basics of her selective enrollment test and reviewed some of the lower level words. I also taught her some tips to remembering words and study skills for the vocabulary."
"We began by going over the practice test the student had done for homework. We then worked on some math concepts and finished up with a reading passage."
"Today's session we began with vocabulary practice. Together we made some flashcards for the words that we have worked with thus far. I had the student write general definitions on the cards as she understood the word. We did not focus on specific definitions, as it is often easier to generally understand a word, and over time narrow the specificity of that word. Using one word definitions will help her create relationships between words. In addition, her mother asked that we work from concept workbooks, so we began the decimal workbook. The student has a good conceptual understanding of decimals up to the tenths place, but is still learning to form her concept of hundredths and thousandths. We also worked with algorithms for solving addition with decimals. Finally, we ended the session with reading comprehension."