Recent Tutoring Session Reviews
"The student and I started today's tutoring lesson with a review of parts of speech: noun, adjective, verb, pronoun, proper noun, possessive noun, tense (past, present, and future), conjunction, colon, and semicolon. The student is nearing mastery level in this material (parts of speech). After we reviewed parts of speech, we moved on to vocabulary development. We began with a Chapter #7, Vocabulary Review Quiz (to check for information retention). Out of the 10 vocabulary words given, she correctly defined 8 of them (80%). After she completed the Chapter #7, Vocabulary Review Quiz, we then reviewed the 10 new vocabulary words -- and their definitions -- in Chapter #8. After we concluded our review of the new vocabulary words in Chapter #8, I gave her a twenty-question chapter quiz (to check for understanding). Out of the 20 questions, the student correctly answered 19 of them (95% -- Bravo!). After she completed his Chapter #8 Vocabulary Quiz, we then moved on to idioms. Today we reviewed / went over the 14 idioms in Section #6: "When Things Go Wrong." Some of the idioms that this specific section include are: 1) Lemon (something defective), 2) Out of the Woods (out of danger), and 3) Get Up on the Wrong Side of the Bed (wake up in a bad mood). She was familiar with most of the idioms in this section. After we finished our Section #6, idiom review, we moved on to grammar study. Today, she completed a one-page worksheet on apostrophes. Out of the 18 questions on the apostrophes worksheet, she correctly answered 17 of them (94%). After she finished the apostrophes worksheet, I introduced some new material: writing a short story. Specifically, we reviewed a three-page "Notes on Writing" Handout. On this writing handout are the following writing terms: brainstorm, outline, rough draft, revise, edit, final draft. Also included on this "Notes on Writing" Handout are these additional terms: introduction; thesis; Statement, Example, Elaborate (SEE); and conclusion. After we reviewed the "Notes on Writing" Handout, we reviewed / went over a two-page, "Creating a Short Story" Worksheet. This specific worksheet includes some of the following English terms: exposition (setting, main characters -- protagonist and antagonist, minor characters, mood), conflict, rising action / events, climax, falling action, and resolution. Thus we reviewed the basic structure of writing a short story. The student will be continuing to work on his short story ideas (using this two-page, "Creating a Short Story" Worksheet) in the lessons ahead. She is always very attentive and focused on the task at hand. Thus our tutoring sessions are always very productive."
"At today's session, I worked with both students. The first student has started reading The Lord of the Flies in his class, and he had a worksheet of comprehension questions that he needed to complete; it included 22 questions from chapter 1. We spent the majority of our session working on these questions. I also periodically asked him questions of my own, just to see how much he retained from reading the chapter. He seemed to have a very strong grasp of the plot and characters from Chapter 1. I also briefly assisted him with a journal assignment that he had, based on Chapter 1 of the book. He was given a quote and asked to analyze it in the context of the book. The second student has been assigned an essay to write for her Persepolis book. She says the final draft is due this upcoming Thursday. We worked on developing her ideas and fleshing out the general outline of her essay. She chose to write about how children who grow up in disadvantaged environments tend to mature at a faster age. She crafted an introductory sentence, transition sentence, and a thesis. Then she identified 3 supports from the book, to highlight in her 3 body paragraphs. I asked her to complete the essay on her own, and to contact me with any questions or need for advice."
"The student had completed and presented the assignment we worked on last time, and felt confident that she'd performed well. This week, she was assigned to write a poetry commentary. Her first step was to select a poem from the poetry database. Then she read the poem for content, paraphrased each sentence for meaning, and finally identified three literary devices (anthropomorphism, mood, and imagery). She was especially good and elaborating on mood and imagery within the poem. We also discussed how the tone and connotations of the poem changed between stanzas, and explored potential reasons the author had chosen to create that shift. Finally, she organized the literary devices, tone & connotations, and general interpretation of the poem into a five paragraph essay, that she will write after she clarifies the instructions with her teacher. Over all, a very good session!"