Recent Tutoring Session Reviews
"The student had completed a full practice ACT with the same timing as the real test. He achieved a 34! That's 3 points higher than his first test. He did very well on most of the sections. The one he struggled with the most was Science. He ran out of time at the end. So we discussed ways to quicken his pace and to monitor his time. We then went through some Science practice problems on a study website. He did well on these, so I believe he can do really well on the ACT, as long as he budgets his time accordingly. He will practice writing another essay for next week."
"The student and I discussed the geometry problems I assigned last week. I explained to him how to solve any problem he had a question about. Then we started going through coordinate geometry and algebra concepts. I gave him practice work in algebra for this week. I have also planned to revisit geometry problems for the next class."
"It was a pleasure to meet this student, and we had a productive first session. After discussing her goals and background, we spent half of the session on critical reading and half on math. It will help her to focus, while she is reading, on the purposes and central ideas of the critical reading selections. In reviewing her math diagnostic, I consistently found errors on arithmetic mean questions and slope questions, so we reviewed both concepts and did sample questions. For this week, I have assigned her three critical reading chapters and three math chapters in the book. She has also agreed to make root word flashcards for the first unit of vocabulary."
"The student has just been blowing me away lately! She is doing so well with her trig, a math area that many students struggle with. We found ACT trig questions, and she did well with them. It is thrilling to see her do so well."
"We covered reading and writing questions, and talked about strategies. I think the student can afford to slow down a little when he re-reads the passage looking for an answer. I told him that the answer is usually given away in one or two lines of the passage, and talked about how to find that."
"Today, we focused on data representation and experimental design in chemistry, then switched to physics an worked on data representation and experimental design. The student was struggling a little with keeping all variables but one the same when extrapolating information from tables, but he got the hang of it. I left him with the strategy of strategic guessing on the ACT."
"Since the student is taking the SAT again next Saturday, we reviewed all sections. She was very strong in math, though there were a couple cases where there were faster ways to complete the problems. The writing section was also very strong; her main issue was that she sometimes forgot how verbs agreed with collective nouns. Finally, her main challenge in the reading section is vocabulary. If she takes the new SAT in March (which omits vocabulary questions), she might see a significant bump in her reading score."
"Today was my last session with the student before his SAT next weekend. In general, I'd say he's prepared. He's learned a lot of grammar and vocabulary, and he's brushed up on his math skills an awful lot. He knows the format of the test and lots of the common tricks the test maker will try to use on him on Saturday. This week, he's going to continue doing light practice most nights, with at least one full length practice exam mixed in. Friday he's not going to study at all but is going to take it easy and get a good night's sleep for Saturday."
"We continued work in the student's test prep book. She completed through practice test 3, section 3, problem 30. She continued to do solid work in general."
"The student completed a practice essay and the English section in the practice test I gave her last week. She answered 71 out of 75 questions correctly. We reviewed her essay and the problems she missed. She should complete the Math, Reading, and Science sections before our next session. We spent the remainder of the time reviewing some important math concepts."
"The student and I discussed his goals for the test that he is going to take in May. He mainly wants to focus on the math portion of the exam as he has confidence in his reading and writing sections. I told him to review the math topics available on the website and make a list of areas that he would like to work on. After he has this list, we can focus on many different problems in the trouble area and get him comfortable with the subject matter. After we have completed this, then we will dig up the hardest problems we can find that require critical thinking and do not have simply check-the-box solutions, and he can develop his own preferences and strategy for dealing with questions that do not have an obvious progression. I showed him some of the more challenging problems that I could remember, and we worked on some of the questions in select topics on the website."
"We continued our extensive review of math concepts and practice problems from the SAT math portion of the exam, with particular attention paid to geometry of the plane and of solid shapes. We also worked problems from the writing portion of the exam since the student identified it as her second most challenging subject. Her logic process when working through most problems was solid - she only had issues if she hadn't reviewed the particular math concept recently. She had a high accuracy in the writing portion. I went over grammar rules as needed to help her identify the best answer in each case. In preparation for her first SAT exam on Saturday, we will have two more sessions - Wednesday and Friday. In the meantime, I am sending her SAT diagnostic exams covering all three subjects to identify any trouble areas for us to focus on for our remaining SAT sessions."