Recent Tutoring Session Reviews
"Today I focused on a basic diagnostic for both students with respect to their speaking, comprehension, and reading in Spanish. I began with a "meet/greet" in which I asked them a few questions about themselves in Spanish, instructing them to respond to me only in Spanish to the best of their abilities. Both students were receptive to speaking and responding in Spanish to me, but of course as with any first tutoring session, were hesitant with respect towards making mistakes when speaking to me. I trust that as they become more comfortable with me, their responses will gradually become longer. Both did a wonderful job of asking for help when unsure how to say a certain word in Spanish, using phrases such as "como se dice..." when asking for assistance. Student L (Reading): He chose to complete the reading activity first. He read through "El bocadillo" and "Como se mueven las cosas." Both are short texts, and are respectively on the "B" and "C" levels. I asked him to underline any words he did not understand, and to try his best with pronunciation. He did an excellent job of pushing through sounds that were difficult for him, often forming multiple variations of a word until he could be guided to the correct one. Student A (Reading): She read through the first two texts that her brother read through and read an additional text entitled "La rueda" (a "D" level). She encountered few problems with comprehension of words and read through all three texts with relative ease, encountering only a few difficulties with respect to pronunciation. Both students have a slight tendency to add/ remove letters to unfamiliar words/ words they have difficulty reading or pronouncing (for example, reading "gran" as "grande"). This is a common choice for students when learning to read in any language or when approaching texts that are just at/ slightly above their lexile level. I expect that as we practice sounds and pronunciation of text/ words, this will fade or lessen over time. Both students (Oral Response to Video): We watched a short video of the common fable "El leon y el raton." Both students encountered the most difficulty with this activity. They both comprehended the story excellently and were able to summarize the story in their own words in Spanish, but paused often searching for words in order to be able to accurately describe the story. Both students gave it an excellent try though, and I did my best to encourage them that they should not feel nervous, as we are meeting to practice skills. I closed the lessons with both students with some basic rundowns of pronunciations of vowels in Spanish when attached to consonants, as well as introducing them to the pronunciation of ll, j, and h in Spanish. Because Student A had slightly less difficulty with the respective texts, I ran through a few more letters with her for each of the vowel sounds and began to explain the concept of the hard and soft sounds of the letters c and g in Spanish. I am hoping to focus more on these ideas next week with both students so that reading can come with more comfort and ease for both of them, as well as begin building a solid base for them to eventually be able to begin writing in Spanish."
"Today we reviewed the materials that the student tested on last week and he showed about 80% mastery of those terms. We then began studying for his next Spanish test which will be this coming Friday. His teacher sent home a study guide and we worked on reviewing the first few pages listed. Today's session was an introduction to the new materials so there was nothing to difficult. The session went well and I'm expecting him to do well as we prepare for his test."
"Tonight I met with the student at her house. We worked on past participles and differentiating between when to use ser and when to use estar. I explained to her that when the word "por" is presented, then it is necessary to use the verb "ser" to create the past participle. If not, then you use "estar." After I explained it this way, she seemed to understand it better. I then taught her about direct and indirect objects. I then had her complete an activity in the textbook where she had to underline the direct object. She breezed right through this without a problem and now it seems like she has a much clearer understanding of what direct objects are and where they appear in a sentence. For next time, I told her to look in her workbook to see if there are any activities that she can complete and, if so, to complete them before our next session. I felt that tonight's session was very productive."
"The student and I covered location vocabulary review and exercises (estar). We also went over reading and writing."
"The student and I reviewed older words like body parts and colors, and I introduced some new words, specifically, family vocabulary. He seemed to pick it up. We also talked about different questions common in Spanish, such as asking someone their name, how they are, how old they are, etc. He seems to do well through games and through speaking--I think he learns best these ways rather than writing things out or seeing them written down."
"I introduced a new learning material to the student and he tried it out. It was a Japanese online newspaper which was written for people who are learning Japanese. It had good amount of vocabulary, new words, and grammar. It was great also for learning date, time, and how to count objects in certain ways."