Recent Tutoring Session Reviews
"We began with vocab. We each chose some words off the list and made flashcards. Because this was our last session, after the vocab, we worked on a practice test. We went section by section, the way the student will take the actual test. She really excels on the math. Her only problems come when she tries to solve the problem too quickly and without writing down the numbers. I encouraged her to use the pencil and paper for each problem, even if she thinks she knows the answer. It's always better to be sure than to make any unnecessary errors. The same holds true for the verbal. She should mark up her reading passages and then write down main Idea, type of passage, and tone of each passage before looking at the questions. She will glide through the questions more quickly when she knows the answer beforehand. Relying on the answer bank is always tricky; the wrong answers are meant to lure uncareful readers! I think the student knows all the content, skills, and strategies, and will do well on the test. I reminded her that there is a checklist of things to bring on the website; we looked at it on my phone. She assured me that on test days, her mom prepares a power breakfast! I feel confident that she is prepared, and can walk in with confidence."
"We reviewed some vocabulary and did a practice analogies set. We also did some math review of fractions, including working with improper fractions and mixed numbers."
"The student and I reviewed his synonym word cards from the previous lesson. I asked him for a definition and a contextual sentence for each word he missed on the synonym assessment in the previous lesson. I reviewed the differences between a verb and an adjective with him, and he relabeled each misnomer correctly. Next, for each word, I asked him to say the word while looking at it written on an index card, and he spelled each word aloud after I flipped the cards over, verbally defined each word, and gave me a contextual sentence for each word. His sentences were all contextual, and each sentence differed from the sentence he'd written on the back of the card. We will review the words again in our next session. At the end of the previous lesson, I asked the student to read a short passage and use the mapping technique. I asked him to use mapping as he answered five multiple-choice questions about the story. He answered the questions correctly. I gave him another story to read - labeled with the phrase "use mapping"ù at the top. I asked him if mapping was helpful when he answered questions about the passage he used it for. He replied, "It helped me a lot."ù Next, I asked him to find the main idea for each of three separate reading passages. I read the first passage aloud to him. He answered the multiple-choice question incorrectly, but quickly changed his answer after rereading the passage to himself (auditory vs silent difference). I asked him to read the next two passages to himself. He selected the correct answer for each passage; in the next lesson, I will ask him to read a passage aloud then answer the question(s) to assess if oral reading interferes with his comprehension. The student and I reviewed the qualities of descriptive writing; in particular how good writing contains details that appeal to the reader's senses. Next, he and I read a paragraph about a creepy house. Each sentence was missing specific details; he was given list of three details about the house: one for the outside of house, the other for above the house, the last for details inside the house. He read each sentence, determined whether the sentence was describing the inside, above, or outside part of the house, and filled in the missing details in each sentence. He answered 9/9 questions correctly. He reread the entire story aloud. I asked him to identify details that related to bodily senses, one at a time. He was verbally able to identify relevant details that appealed to the senses. I allowed him to keep the paragraph as a model. I instructed him to write a descriptive story based on a picture as a homework assignment. The student successfully simplified 6/6 fractions correctly. He simplified two fractions in increments, first by two, then by two again. I explained to him that, for these two problems, that the GCF was 4, not two. I showed him that he could calculate the GCF by multiplying the two "common factors."ù Next, we made a vocab card for the lowest (least) common multiple (the smallest number that is a multiple of two or more numbers), and then practiced adding fractions with different denominators. He answered 6/6 questions correctly. Next, we discussed how to change improper fractions to mixed numbers. He answered 3/3 questions correctly. I left him with a math worksheet on this topic to be completed at as homework. Lastly, I asked him to complete two word problems. Each word problem required the student to write an equation described by the word problem. Prior to his independent attempt, we completed a problem together. I read the problem aloud. He wrote down important information. I translated the important information into an equation. He answered 2/2 questions correctly. He solved the problems correctly in his head, but needed verbal prompting to retrace his steps and write an equation. These types of word problems are the most difficult to complete successfully, so I introduced them early (more time to practice); I will practice a few more problems with him before asking him to complete the problems independently."