Recent Tutoring Session Reviews
"In today's session, we began by working through a homework assignment on Newton's Laws and forces in general. We specifically spent a fair amount of time discussing "elevator" problems, i.e. accelerating/decelerating in various directions and how that relates to the net force on an object. After that, we worked through a range-finding problem, and discussed how to find the most efficient way to solve such problems, since the student's tests are timed. For the last half-hour of our session, we worked on some problems that dealt with applications of calculus concepts to physics problems, such as finding areas under a curve and using derivatives and integrals to relate displacement, velocity, and acceleration in one or two directions."
"The student got an A on his last Electricity and Magnetism test! Today we worked on some problems involving the electric potential due to different charge distributions. We set up some linear (& polar) coordinate integrals to find V due to a charged wire. Overall, these integrals tend to be a little simpler to set up, since potential is a scalar quantity and we don't have to worry about direction. The hardest part for him was understanding what "r" needed to be in the integral, which is probably the hardest part to figure out overall."
"The student and I worked on a homework assignment given through an online course she's enrolled in. We covered the topic of vector addition, including trigonometry, vector decomposition, and finding the magnitude and direction of the resultant. We also touched on the topic of static equilibrium and sketching a free body diagram. She catches on quickly to the concepts and strategies, but rushes a bit without reflection on the overall strategy of getting the answer. She has considerable skills to determine if her answer makes sense and a good intuition about the concepts and their application. I provided her with a link to a physics text for a supplemental reference, as her course materials seem not to provide sufficient scaffolding for engaging productively in the assignment. We are meeting tomorrow to continue the lesson."
"We worked up 5 projectile motion problems with complete solutions and submitted those via email attachment prior to this evening's session. I reviewed these problems with the student and then assisted with his homework problems involving SHM of a mass on a spring and a pendulum problems. We then started work on wave motion."
"We covered electricity and magnetism with a specific focus on the geometries involved. Though tough to visualize perfectly, we worked on picturing the magnetic fields produced by electric current as well as the induced current produced by magnetic fields. It was mostly a conceptual day and though we didn't finish far from where we started a lot of headway was made in terms of understanding the basic mechanics of electric and magnetic fields."
"It was great meeting the student. He's a very hardworking student who, when you ask him why a pen falls to the floor, answers "The Curvature of Space-time." We reviewed a mechanics quiz and discussed impulse and momentum. Afterward, I introduced the concepts of electrostatics, and after I finished explaining it, he answered all of my questions correctly."
"I worked with both kids today. I'm happy the first student reported getting a 91 on her last exam! Big ups to her. Today we worked on more geometric proofs, but these ones included two new concepts, altitudes and medians. At first, the first student stated that she was nervous that these new concepts would complicate her understanding of proofs but I saw that she only had minor misconceptions about the topic and that in reality she has very little to worry about. We've began preparing for exam ahead of time so I know she'll do well. With the second student, we finished the material on electric potential and literally covered every problem on the textbook regarding these concepts. He had some minor issues with the displacement variable in some of the equations that connect potential to electric field and electric potential energy. By the end of the session he had completely clarified these misconceptions and we ended up doing every problem."
"During this session we focused on work and energy. We mostly looked at the general principle of conservation of energy and the various ways it could be applied. This included looking at speed and height with a system that only had energy transferring between kinetic and potential energy. As part of this we looked at conservative forces and non-conservative forces. We looked at spring systems and how to use conservation of energy even when friction is brought into the picture. We ended by covering rotation motion including the difference between angular acceleration/velocity and linear acceleration/velocity. We discussed moment of inertia. We also looked at how the equations and variables were parallel between rotational and linear motion."
"We covered capacitors in parallel and series, the properties of capacitors and their behavior over time. The student didn't struggle too much with anything. She has a good attitude and asks good questions. No study skills in particular. No extra practice, she has homework to do. No progress to report."
"This is his last full week for physics. This session, we prepared several different sections of physics in order to be able to receive as many checks as he can this week. We covered kinetic and potential energy (law of conservation of energy), compound circuits, and voltage sources."
"We reviewed properties of light and lumination in preparation for her quiz before looking ahead to the beginning of optics with plane mirrors and Snell's law of refraction to get the student familiar with some of the upcoming math. We also reviewed some calculus for her upcoming test on optimization and related rates of change. We looked over her returned quizzes to understand the questions she got wrong, and also went through a related rate problem."
"The student and I prepared for her upcoming exam. We covered the Electrical Force by reexamining concepts and working through past homework problems. Over the course of the session, The student clarified her understanding of the material and became comfortable with this unit's equations."