Recent Tutoring Session Reviews
"Today we read two books. One was from a series that we frequently begin with, as they are easy for the student to read and flow through, and he seems to enjoy them. We then moved on to a higher level, non-fiction book about insects. We learned about all kinds of different insects around the world. I think the non-fiction books are really good for him, because they tend to be at a higher level, he enjoys them more, and he gets the extra benefit of learning other topics that he will surely cover in school. He was able to read much more steadily throughout our sessions. There were points that, if I marked the words as we read along, he would read entire pages with only slight pauses in between words. His reading is definitely improving, and I think a large part of that lies in allowing him to distract himself for brief moments before moving on. Today, he would distract himself with questions that were completely related to the topic (as opposed to losing his concentration completely on something else). I think the non-fiction books also help keep him focused on the topic at hand. He seems to still guess at words occasionally instead of sounding them out, but this is happening less frequently. Slowly he is recognizing phonic patterns in words and can sail smoothly through them when he sees a similar pattern in an unknown word. We then went over some language arts exercises in his workbook. We worked on identifying whether or not a sentence was missing a noun or a verb. He learned the difference between the two and intuitively knew the answers and, after a few problems, learned the grammar behind his natural understanding. He now knows the difference between nouns/verbs and understands that a sentence is not complete without a subject and a verb (predicate). I didn't leave him with any extra practice yet. I want him to feel comfortable with his workload before we get into that."
"Today we started by reviewing long vowels sounds using a cheat sheet with several variations of how each vowel can be spelled, and an example word for each spelling. This was helpful to refer back to later in the session. She got tripped up on a few, but then is able to correct herself when seeing the word (like -oi, -oy or -oa, -ea). She read through a passage and then searched through to find each combination of letters that formed long vowel sounds. We then worked on multi-syllable nonsense words. This is still a problem for her. Before the activity, I broke apart the words and had her use two pieces of paper to cover all parts of the word other than the one segment she was focusing on. She started well, but then would try to go too fast and guess instead of focusing on the letters in the word. She continues to need to work on focusing on the small segments of words, and not start to guess when presented with a longer word she doesn't know. The last activity we worked on was covering the first letter, or first blend, of a word in a passage and having her read through and determine what is covered up. She did well with just the first letter covered, only having difficulty on the word your (with y covered), but she had a much harder time when the beginning blend was covered. We will work more on this prediction skill."
"The student read Eric Carle's Seahorse, then practiced spelling with lists found online. We also practiced -et words."