Recent Tutoring Session Reviews
"The student is working on present subjunctive and we did some review in preparation for his quiz. The student did pretty well with the material. He might need to go over and memorize some of the phrases that set off the subjunctive tense (impersonal expressions, doubts, emotion)."
"During our first session, we worked on the personal pronouns, conjugation of the ar, er, and ir verbs, and started doing some entry level Spanish conversations. The student is quick to catch on. He simply needs some practice speaking Spanish and reviewing the areas that will be on the final. He was asked to spend 10 minutes each day practicing his pronunciation and increasing his voice level. He will have his work book with him for the next session so we can better focus on his weaker areas. I've also asked for a copy of his last test so I can see what was missed."
"In our last session of the school year, the student and I worked on a study guide for her final exam in Spanish the following day. As a quick progress note: she received a 90% on her final exam in physics, scoring an A in the class as her final grade. She worked very hard over the course of the whole semester and thoroughly deserved this result for her work. Awesome job! Today in Spanish, we covered mostly high yield grammatical concepts that will appear on her exam. The most important of which being the difference between the preterite and imperfect past tenses. Generally speaking, we use the imperfect to set the scene, describe intangible things such as emotion, talk about past routines and habits, as well as describe actions happening in the background, or "meanwhile". Preterite, on the other hand, is the past tense of events within a specific frame of time and is used almost exclusively to advance events in a story; things with a definite beginning and ending. Although it seems rather simple upon reflection, preterite versus imperfect tends to be an incredibly difficult and frustrating concept for non-native speakers of the language because we just don't have this problem or this differentiation in English. She is actually very adept with this concept, and even though it is tough to feel 100% confident while answering questions testing this knowledge, she should feel reassured that she has done very well with it in the past and that she has a strong foundation in her rules that she has gained with significant practice. We also briefly covered ser versus estar, somewhat of a deep review concept, but still very important nonetheless. Overall, we were able to cover as much grammar as we possibly could, but the majority of the points she will earn on the exam will come from her rote memorization of vocabulary presented to her over the course of the last several chapters, and ultimately, this is something that she has to prepare for on her own. She has set up flashcards with vocabulary terms/definitions online that she has been reviewing, and I encouraged her heavily to continue doing this later on to make sure the terms are solidified. Looking at a practice exam given to her to study with, simply having vocabulary terms embedded in her head will provide a large number of points on the test. Otherwise, she feels confident with the grammar and was definitely ready in that respect; with some more vocabulary review, I have no doubt she will have all of the tools to succeed on this final exam."