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...Children tutored individually performed two standard deviations better than children who received conventional classroom instruction -- a huge difference.
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Recent Tutoring Session Reviews
The student did not have his Latin book today, but he did receive one quiz back last week. We went over that in detail and it did give me a much better idea of where he is struggling, and that is with verbs - mostly when to use subjunctive and when to use indicative. I am working on a handout of the subjunctive. I'm hoping next week he will have his book and some more quizzes. I am also going to bring some past national exams, since his exam is coming up for him. Those are definitely more fun, so that will be a nice change of pace from his usual homework.
The student and I went over his most recent practice tests, talked about the best ways to make his science content review give the highest possible yield before the test, and fine-tuned the verbal strategies we'd already discussed. We talked about integrating the other verbal strategies by reading for coherence - assuming the passage author introduces certain points or examples at certain times for specific reasons; making sure the answers to questions are mutually compatible; deciding between two true answers by picking the one that specifically answers the question and conforms to a coherent reading of the passage.
The student and I met and she wanted to mainly work on Reading, which is her weakest section, and get some more Science practice. We worked on a prose fiction passage and talked specifically about how to find the right answer when the passage is a little more interpretive and how some answers sound good but aren't in the passage. We also worked on multiple Science passages, still working on where to find information and how to make sure you are comfortable with it before you start answering questions.
During our Spanish session for the week, the student and I mostly practiced and reviewed what we have been working on the past few weeks. We began with reviewing the names and spellings of the names of months in Spanish. We then moved on to reviewing the names of animals; she is definitely improving after our practice. We then did a couple activities with numbers, and finished with a review of clothing.
The student's Science Fair Report is complete aside from adding finishing touches and looking it over once more with her example packet to see that it has everything in it that it needs. She brought her science fair board home so we will most likely work on that on Monday.
Mathematically, he knows most of it. But the SAT is tricky. He makes minor mistakes. Like, he finds the value of y, but the problem is asking for the value of x. When he's doing the problems, he should be constantly asking himself, "did I make a mistake?" The SAT is tricky and a certain amount of paranoia is necessary for attacking the problems. For the verbal section, his reading comprehension is fine. The The difference between the two of us is that my vocabulary is a lot larger than his, which also accounts for the score difference.
Discussed the concepts of thermodynamics and heat transfer. Specifically talked about the first (energy can never be destroyed) and second (entropy always increases) laws of thermodynamics and their practical manifestations - things like temperature and heat transfer and flow. While going over a review sheet for the student's upcoming test, discussed real-life physical manifestations of the concepts we covered: convection currents at the beach, how and why we insulate houses and refrigerators. Practiced word problems using these concepts.
Tonight the student and I focused on reading comprehension. We read a story and then completed exercises on identifying the main idea and picking out details from the story. We also did exercises with synonyms, antonyms, and vocabulary.
The student and I went through the use of the plus-que-parfait tense, as well as examples of how to complete conditional if/then statements in French. Despite some early technical difficulties, we were able to go through everything the student had to work on. We looked at the rules of the conditional statements, how to look at context for clues on which tense to use, and the meanings of the different verb tense combinations for conditional statements.
The students worked on solutions problems, specifically calculating molarity and finding missing values of moles and volume. We also worked out a few dilution problems, and I had them explain the logic behind each problem.
Student 1 practiced the 4th hundred sight words, identified words that she struggled with (certain, unit, figure, south, several) and wrote sentences with the words. She completed a mini practice of grammar that worked on sentence structure and context clues. In math she continued her practice with regrouping as well as measurement and multiplication. Student 2 read an article on the Everglades and completed reading activities such as prediction, summary, and answered questions about the main idea and cause/effect. She completed a vocabulary assignment in which she identified the correct use in a sentence, and found synonyms and antonyms. She also continued with her math assessment. Her extra practice was to complete the summary and write sentences with spelling words and vocabulary words.
Reviewed vocabulary, analogies, test-taking techniques, and some math for the test coming up this Saturday. This is the last session, but I told the student and his parents that I would be available by phone, Internet, etc. for any last-minute questions.
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