Recent Tutoring Session Reviews
"In today's session, we reviewed taxonomy of chordates in preparation for a test on Friday. We distinguished between jawless fish, cartilaginous fish, and bony fish. We also compared and contrasted amphibians, reptiles, birds, and mammals. In mammals we discussed monotremes, marsupials, and placentals. We also explored early hominids."
"The student and I went through three educational videos based on taxonomy and classification of a species and hybrids and bacterial cells. The student has to complete work in class based on the information in these videos. We discussed what the definition of a species is and how this differs from a hybrid. These definitions get a bit more complex when considering the huge variety of domesticated dog breeds so I talked a bit about selective breeding for specific traits to clarify why such a huge variety of dog breeds still only count as one species. We tried to come up with an effective synonym to remember the order of taxonomic levels: kingdom, phylum, class, order, family, genus, species. We also reviewed some of the key differences between eukaryotic cells and prokaryotic cells."
"We reviewed the endocrine system and nervous system in preparation for a quiz the student will be taking on Wednesday. We compared and contrasted the two systems. We went over chemical messengers (hormones and neurotransmitters). We reviewed the organs that make up both systems and their functions. We made a flowchart of the nervous system to visualize the subdivisions that make it up. We also went over the function of each subdivision."
"We went over an old exam as a method to prepare the student for an exam tomorrow. The student had a good grasp of the contents but had some confusion that needed to be resolved. She understood the material better and feels less overwhelmed. I left her with several online videos and diagrams that I thought would better elucidate the concepts. I was happy with this session. I felt that I was able to make a real difference in helping alleviate any concerns and test anxiety."
"My student made wonderful improvement with his most recent exam - an 88! I discussed his test-taking strategies, and we reviewed two concept videos on DNA transcription and RNA translation that were on that exam. We next covered material for the next exam, which includes characteristics of DNA, chromosomes, and gene. Then, we reviewed the steps of meiosis. After discussing his class PowerPoints and worksheets, we practiced AP biology practice multiple choice questions. Finally, I asked the student to practice with practice questions to cover meiosis. He feels more confident with the material and is becoming more familiar with vocabulary including synapsis, centromere vs centrosome, centriole, tetrad, chiasma, and metaphase equatorial plate."
"Today's session covered meiosis and some aspects of heredity. The concept of heredity can be a bit difficult to grasp as there is some math involved and one has to keep both the genotype and phenotype separate. We also looked at a bit of geometry in preparation for the student's next test."