Recent Tutoring Session Reviews
"Over the course of the past few weeks, the student's class continued their in-class reading of the WWII nonfiction book, "Night." Upon meeting this week, the student notified me that he would be taking the test on this book the following day and that the format of the test was multiple choice and some matching. In order to model strategies focused on answer elimination, re-wording statements, and making inferences I developed a graphic organizer which was set up as a checklist that he could use to guide his reading and that would also provide helpful hints on how to approach specific types of questions. This was kept very simple, and I mentioned to him that if he found that 2 or 3 of these strategies were helpful that he would need to employ them on his unit tests, and standardized tests in the future. Specific to our lesson today, he: 1) Read over the questions, 2) Read the passage one time through with those questions guiding his reading, 3) Eliminated -2- choices from each item, and 4) Used evidence from the passage to support the final choice. In the future, it would be beneficial for us to revisit these test preparation activities, and also highlight their similarities between the strategies we have already implemented to guide his note taking and reading in a variety of subjects."
"We worked mostly on ACT math, especially the more complicated problems with exponents. Then we spent some time practicing how to organize an ACT essay vs an SAT essay."
"Discussed the rotating schedule and the challenge it presents. Proposed possible solution to aid schedule management and tracking. Agreed that this year's performance needs to finish strong and if he can do this, it will allow him to reflect on his story. Homework: draft schedule troubling shooting a check list."
"The student and I went over the ISEE test and what he should expect when taking the test. We discussed his strengths and weaknesses for taking the test. We practiced with an online practice test program as well as some practice material I had brought with me."
"The student is preparing to retake the SSAT on February 6 and is hoping to improve his score. Math is the area of most concern, especially geometry. Today, we created a plane geometry reference sheet that the student can use while doing practice and his performance was noticeably improved by the end of the session. He is doing homework from his study materials and worksheets that I am emailing."
"In this session, the student and I reviewed the practice sets she completed for homework and also worked on some additional reading comprehension. In particular, we focused on the long passages with multiple passages."
"We went through each section of the ACT and did practice problems and discussed strategies along the way. For the English section, we focused on phrase, clause, and sentence errors. Regarding this category, we definitely want to practice more with modifier issues and who/whom questions. For math, we focused on algebra problems, such as adding fractions with unlike denominators. We also worked on finding the domain of a function and worked on midpoint and distance formulas. We worked on a humanities passage for the reading section. We want to work on passage comprehension and understanding the main idea and the author's tone. She should practice on her own with this. We didn't have time for the science section so we will start with this next time."
"I had a really great session with the student tonight! He took the Science section of Practice Test 1 in the ACT book and scored 26. That makes his results: Composite 26.0, English 21, Math 35, Reading 22, and Science 26. Tonight we went over questions that he had from working the English chapters. We also talked again about the basic Science section strategies (timing, passage types, order to work passages) and he took a screenshot of my notes so that he can have them for further reference. For homework, he is to read Chapter 10 in the review book (Reading preview). Next session we will do the Reading Section Lesson in which I will teach him how to do passage mapping."
"In this session, we worked on the essay and grammar portions of the SAT. For the essay, the student still has a lot of difficulty coming up with relevant information in order to determine what to say about the subject. This often results in her having a hard time connecting the dots between her abstract arguments and the concrete evidence she uses to support them. In general, I think that it would be very helpful if she were more specific when giving her supporting pieces of evidence and articulating her argument. I was pleased to see that she was able to identify errors pretty well on the grammar during the session. It was pleasant to see her identifying errors so well. I hope that she continues what she is doing, as sounding out the answers and going with gut feelings seems to be the best strategy for her."
"Today was our first meeting back from break. We discussed the practice test that the student took over break, and she reflected that the math and English sections were the most challenging for her. We then went through a grammar practice test together, making a "mental checklist" of grammar rules for her remember during the test. For homework, she is going to do a sample writing test, which she will send to me to grade by Friday evening."
"During this session we continued focusing on verbal practice questions (especially analogies). Also, we discussed strategies for the writing section. We reviewed some math and reading strategies with the remaining time. I hope the test went well!"
"We reviewed the student's PSAT score. I explained the meaning of his percentiles which were 77th in reading and 91st in math (86th percentile on combined score) and that they are not the same as percentages. Percentiles mean that, for his combined score for example, he scored higher than 86% of those who took the test. We then went over his practice SAT test that he did for homework. His scores in all areas are improving. He takes his first SAT soon."