Recent Tutoring Session Reviews
"The student was reviewing a practice test (no answers provided). In it she had to derive a structure using only C13 and proton NMR for a 10 carbon compound with (as it turned out) 5 degrees of unsaturation and 3 oxygens. She also had to assign the signals for the various protons and carbons in the spectra (not the aromatics). Other problems called for her to draw the expected carbon and proton spectra, and to sort isomers based on their spectra. Still other problems dealt with Diels-Alder reactions, predicting the products as well as determining what starting materials were used to get a given product. This has not yet been covered in her class, so I had to explain conrotatory and disrotatory reactions (Woodward Hoffmann rules), and show her how to do a retro Diels-Alder."
"We covered the student's notes on carboxylic acid derivatives and reactivity series, along with some practice problems on Friedel Crafts synthesis and mechanisms for forming carbonyl derivatives. She needed help with starting a reaction and knowing where to move the protons for mechanisms so we went over that in detail. She was appreciative of the material covered. She has an exam next week, so we will have another session tomorrow to go over everything."
"Today, the student and I worked on synthesis tips and strategies, reverse engineering reactions, and listing out ways to synthesize functional groups, all about Grignards, Grignard reagents what can and cannot be used in a Grignard reaction, reverse engineering a Grignard from an alcohol or an alkane/ alkene, acetylene reactions, hydrating acetylene, and keto enol equilibrium."
"We covered electrophilic addition reactions to alkenes and alkynes as well as nucleophilic substitution and elimination. The student had made flashcards of reactions, but she had difficulty applying her knowledge to the test problems. I suggested ways for her to actually learn the reactions so she'd be able to use what she knows more effectively. There were many wins. She smiled often when she realized that I was familiar with precisely the sort of problems that were causing difficulty. I feel I earned her trust."
"Today the student and I got a lot accomplished. We worked together to help her understand all of Chapter 9 PowerPoint slides (Cancer). Specific concepts included understanding how oncogenes and tumor suppressor genes contribute to the rise and spread of cancer after exposure to mutations. We reviewed, drew and created concept maps for the mechanisms behind cancer and the current drugs and medications used to treat cancer and similar illnesses."
"Today the student did her homework, which dealt primarily with reactions of carbonyls. We have gone over carbonyls before, but this time the reactions dealt with busting open compounds and closing them up. She did great! She asked great questions and processed the material like a champ."