Recent Tutoring Session Reviews
"The student had a writing assignment for US History - we reviewed a draft that had received teacher comments and then discussed how to improve it: removing redundancies, making his arguments and his evidence more specific, and re-organizing his argument slightly. We then looked at the next phase of the assignment - reading a variety of source documents and extracting insights he could use to support his overall argument."
"The student and I worked on an English assignment where we identified different characters' motivations in Macbeth in Scene 5. We filled out four worksheets about minor characters. He replied to the questions succinctly, but we did work on crafting the responses together. He was able to interpret the text despite the dense language and plot lines that could be difficult to follow. He on his own identified ways to make his writing more concise and ways to better show his point. At the end of the session, we talked about reading materials that could help him improve critical thinking and writing skills. I recommended some well-written books that he might enjoy."
"The student did his reading homework for Monday, reading the first five pages of Chapter 8 of "The Princess and the Goblin." We responded to its two questions, going back to the text and reminding him of the specific details of what the goblins spoke about so as to answer the questions with more specificity. He then explained to me in broad strokes what occurred in each chapter from 1-7. I asked questions about the facts he told me; when he didn't have a confident answer, I made sure to hone in on that content when we went back and read. As preparation for his test, he read chapter 1 and half of chapter 2. I made sure he understood why the goblins were at odds with the humans and what the princess's living situation was like."
"I worked with the student on organizing his writing. I provided him with an outline and aligned it with the rubric provided by his teacher. We also read over some of the handouts the teacher provided for his writing assignment. He has great reading and comprehension skills. He is very creative and is able to explain his answers, however, writing his ideas down are a challenge. We discussed the importance of outlining and organizing his ideas. He appears to understand, but needs more practice. I helped him set up an outline for his next essay. We completed the introductory paragraph together and began the intro sentences for the next sections."
"This was a good session. We focused on completing the outline for the essay we began in our last session, then put together a second outline for a compare and contrast essay. Good work, well organized. We're planning to work on the student's synthesis essay next session."
"The student and I continued talking about her Grapes of Wrath saturation essay and ways to analyze the text. She had to come up with a potential thesis for an essay analyzing style and what style Steinbeck writes in/how he uses it, and ultimately to describe how this style contributes to the meaning. Overall, she is doing well in this, though she could still use some work in reaching the 'how the style contributes to the overall meaning of the text' stage. She is accomplished in identifying style/devices and what the particular quotes mean, and is beginning to understand more how these style choices contribute to a greater meaning of the text as a whole. We will cover this essay as well as Candide next time."