Recent Tutoring Session Reviews
"The student continued to read the Lord of the Flies using the same method as in previous sessions. He was to read 2 pages at a time and take 5 minute breaks when he has reached his goal."
"At this session, the student had read far past the page I assigned her, and almost completed Harry Potter. I know this is partly because she had more time to read over spring break, and I am glad she was motivated to read on her own. As often happens, she was more able to remember (and excited to tell me about) the events that happened in the last pages of the section she had read. I asked her about what had happened after we left off, and she talked about the centaurs Harry met in the enchanted forest, and how Harry decided to go after the Sorcerer's Stone himself. Several times I gave her a page number in the vicinity of the events she was describing, and asked her to name specific details (for example, the word "centaur" to describe the creatures Harry met). When she mis-remembered an event, we looked in that section of the book to find out what had actually happened. I asked her who she thought had given Harry his invisibility cape back; she named Professors McGonagall and Dumbledore, and I asked her to give reasons for her prediction. We also discussed the more advanced literary technique of foreshadowing, and discussed events in the story that hinted at what was to come next. Next session, we will finish Harry Potter and have a "mock interview" in which I will ask her comprehension questions about the story as if she were Harry Potter himself."
"We began the session by playing a spelling game online in which Student 1 and Student 2 had to find words in a jumble of letters. Both girls began with very basic words but as the session progressed, they found larger and more original words. They also became increasingly adept at finding ways to extend works (for example, making them plural or adjectival). As they played, both girls occasionally asked for spelling and vocabulary help as they chose words. After spelling, we played a grammar game that covered adverbs and adjectives. The game was designed for sixth graders and was therefore a little advanced for Student 1. However, given a little help, she was usually able to correctly note the concept even if she didn't know the particular word. Student 2 was also quite knowledgeable and improved as she talked through answers and responded to prompts. During the game, we discussed concepts like the difference between concrete and abstract nouns and indefinite pronouns. Although new to the students, they seemed to learn the concepts with relative ease. Next, we began with a review of Ender's Game since it's been a while since our last session. We reviewed the characters, plot, and main themes. Student 2's recall was quite good, and Student 1's memory of the main events was solid although she had trouble with the details. Then, we read the next chapter aloud in turns with each person reading for as long as she was comfortable. Student 1 was the most uncomfortable reading and sometimes had difficulty knowing where one sentence ended and another began. In the future, I will work with her on sentences, clauses, etc., and the significance of punctuation marks. During the reading, we stopped at certain points to discuss the plot, characters, or themes. For instance, during the Giant's Game sequence we discussed the symbolism and why Ender would feel that way. Finally, we watched some of the movie adaptation. Unlike Narnia, Ender's Game does not have much in the way of adaptation so the movie mostly served as a way to clarify the events of the book."
"The student was ready to enhance her knowledge. She jumped into the session ready to learn. I reviewed past emails, and she rewrote them appropriately. Then, she asked for another way to write them. We followed this pattern about 3 times. We discussed her weaknesses which included closings, greetings, and the body of emails which included past and present tense verbs. She left with some wonderful examples of grammatically correct emails. I am looking forward to working with her again."
"Today's session was productive. We reviewed different types of questions that will be on the practice SAT that the student will take in the future. I also discussed with him strategies to think about when taking a test like this one. We discussed his summer reading assignments. I plan to have a book club with him to assist with reading all of the material that is required."
"The student and I reviewed key concepts for her English test next week including grammar terms, components of a story, figurative language and more. We reviewed many of the poems and short stories she will be tested on. We will continue on Sunday."