Recent Tutoring Session Reviews
"The student and I began this session by reviewing his grammar multiple choice homework. She did an excellent job on this. We spent the remainder of the session preparing for the essay. She learned who grades SAT essays, what graders are looking for, and how to choose strong examples for body paragraphs. We also went over how to structure a strong essay, and how to write stellar thesis statements and topic sentences. Using a real prompt, she brainstormed and outlined an essay that we both agreed would earn a high score, and she practiced writing thesis statements and topic sentences for this essay. For homework, she will compile and research a list of 8-10 strong examples to use in his essays as we discussed. She will then use this list to write a timed practice essay using the prompt in Practice Test #2, and complete all of the sentence completion and grammar multiple choice problems in Practice Test #1. On Friday, we will review this homework, continue to work on the essay section, and, if time allows, begin working on the passage-based reading section or the math section."
"For our last session, the girls and I reviewed some of the strategies for the SAT Writing section, as well as a few grammatical rules. We talked about trusting one's "grammar ear" to listen for errors on Improving Sentence and Error ID questions. While I usually wouldn't emphasize this as entirely as I have with the girls, their background in journalism has given them a strong ability to catch these errors on the first read through. We talked a little bit about always checking the shorter answer choices in these sections as well; conciseness is always better than wordiness on the SAT. I also gave them a few things to check for each time: subject-verb disagreement, modifying phrases, and pronoun-antecedent agreement. We also discussed how to know whether a pronoun should be in the objective or subjective tense, and while the girls struggled with predicate nominatives, we worked through a quick worksheet together which seemed to clarify the concept. Overall, the girls said that they felt prepared for their test and that their scores have improved as we've worked together."
"We went through the previous critical reading and mathematics assignments. She's improving significantly in the math section. In the critical reading section, she has the habit of rushing through the section and hence makes some mistakes. So we worked through a few drills to show that she has to take her time if she wants to finish sections more accurately. I left her with mathematics exercises (focusing on stats, probability and functions), critical reading (focusing on long and short articles) and some writing."