Recent Tutoring Session Reviews
"The student and I used this session to focus on timing through each section and to tweak any strategies that she might want to use during the test. We first went over an essay outline and reviewed how she might introduce a counter-argument as a way of supporting her examples. She then completed a Writing practice section and was able to finish it with 5 minutes to spare. After going over the section and reviewing strategies, we did the same thing with a Reading practice section. She performed very well in both sections, time-wise, and only had a few incorrect answers! I left her with a few practice sections to complete, timed, before our next session, which will be our final meeting before her SAT."
"The student and I concentrated on improving sentences questions. We looked at specifically parallelisms and finished up with some vocab. The student needs to review some basics, but he catches onto patterns quickly."
"The student and I spent half our time practicing essay outlines for sample prompts. I reviewed expectations, strategy, and timing. He will continue to practice independently and send me copies of any essays he writes for feedback. We also worked on long reading passage comprehension, vocabulary strategy, and grammar rules from the practice test. I gave him last minute advice on preparing for the test and left him some links for additional practice."
"Today, we first talked about what the student has been getting on her past SAT exams, what her goal is, and what her aspiring colleges are. We then discussed different parts of the SAT test and what she was weakest at. Then, we reviewed the SAT Critical Reading section, starting with the sentence completion. We discussed test-taking strategies, and I told her that she needs to write down and memorize every vocabulary word that she does not know. We then went over and discussed strategies for passage-based reading questions. I told her about different question types and what to look out for when reading the passage. I also left her with some homework to do for our next lesson on Saturday. Overall, she did a good job."
"The students and I went over high-yield math topics. We covered arcs and tangents, prime numbers, ratios and direction variation, inequalities, and combinations and permutations. They are generally strong on these topics but are somewhat rusty. We are getting them back up to speed. They understand the concepts and the equations, and with a little homework, they should do fine. I will be assigning diagnostic tests to isolate particular areas of conceptual weakness that we need to address. We also addressed test-taking strategies for the math section. Occasionally, they need a prompt to find the right equation to begin solving the problem. This will improve as they refresh their memories of these systems of equations. They are great at explaining concepts to each other, which improves the efficiency of sessions."
"The student and I continued to work on the math section. We began by going over her homework, which she did a great job on, and reviewing a few particularly hard problems. Next, we completed some more practice problems together. She is making great progress on the math section, and for homework she will do about three practice tests worth of math sections. In our next session we will review this homework and, if time allows, begin working on a new section of the exam."
"We opened the session by reviewing SAT writing strategies. The student then completed a SAT math practice section, and after discussing strategies specific to the SAT math section, we went over her answers. Coming full circle, she completed a timed Writing section. For homework, I asked her to read SAT essays that had scored 5/6 and try and find common characteristics among them."
"Today, during our first session, we practice the strategy of plugging in numbers for variables on the math section. We also spent approximately 20 to 30 minutes reviewing the most commonly tested grammar rules for the writing section."
"We continued with SAT Critical Reading practice today. Since the test is so soon, I figured it was best to focus on reading comprehension. The student is getting very adept at eliminating the answers in reading comprehension. He almost never eliminates correct answers and is able to recognize the "lame duck" answers that make no sense whatsoever. He is definitely improving. We ended the day with a quick math diagnostic. Math is clearly his best section."
"Tonight, the student and I started out with 20 minutes each of vocabulary and reading questions, then moved on to 40 minutes each of writing and math (probability) questions. She had a great attitude, as always. She is always on-task and ready to work. I would like to encourage her to let me know if I haven't explained any particular concept sufficiently, when we are working together. I wouldn't say that she was struggling with anything, but I think she might have had a slightly tougher time with the writing questions and some of the math questions. However, she also impressed me with her proficiency on some of the other math questions. She had a fantastic run of correct vocabulary questions. We didn't cover any new strategies tonight, although we did practice using some of the strategies we had previously learned."
"Today we covered writing an essay and the algebra of the math section. We broke down how to structure an essay and practiced using a prompt. We wrote down the different ideas next to our picture of an essay structure to help visualize the essay. I gave him a timing scheme for writing and assigned him two practice essays to write in timed conditions. We reviewed basic geometry like special triangles and then moved on to algebra. We studied basic graphs and transformations and worked on domain and range from equations. One of the study skills that we used came from yesterday -- trying to eliminate answers we knew were wrong. For the math section I assigned him work from the review book. In addition, I gave him more vocabulary homework with a quiz scheduled for our next session."
"The student and I had a good session today. Over time he got to an excellent spot, around the 700 mark. A bit more practice, and I'm confident that his scores will become quite good indeed."