Recent Tutoring Session Reviews
"Today we talked about what her goals are for the test and she told me that she is hoping to get a 2000 or above. We talked about the scoring system and what kind of improvements she needs to make to get her scores into the 600 range for math and writing. We then took some time to review functions, as I had noticed this was a problem area on the practice test. She has a strong grasp on the basics but sometimes becomes confused when the type of question becomes trickier. This is a skill I want to keep working on with her. Next we went through the practice questions in the SAT book for the passage based reading section. We talked about the fact that the answer to every question can be found directly in the texts and we systematically went through the questions, highlighting samples of the texts that provided direct evidentiary support for answers. I had her do the final passage by herself and I was very pleased with how she did (only one answer wrong!) Finally I had her do a timed math section from one of the practice tests in the book so she could practice her time management strategies, as well as some of the math specific strategies we have been working on so far. I will look over the section and review it with her next week."
"This was our last session before the student's test. ESSAY- 1) We went over edits on the student's last practice essay. 2) We did brainstorming exercises on two essay prompts, verbally outlining/free-writing two prompts with a time limit. 3) We went over his strategy for the essay. CRITICAL READING- 1) We reviewed vocabulary from previous sessions to reinforce long-term memorization and keep it freshly in his mind. 2) We did a few sentence completion exercises together. MATH- We went over content and exercises in the student's weaker areas. This included triangles and angles. PRE-TEST CHECKLIST- We ran through all the practical things the student needs for the test (like pencils, breakfast, snacks, etc.), as well as all the test prep he can do in the next day. We made a checklist of these items to help him organize it. WRAP-UP- We discussed how he feels for the exam and how his parents feel about it as well. They both expressed positive thoughts and confidence from our sessions together. I reiterated all that we went over and assured them all of the student's dedication during our time together. I provided encouragement and final test-day pointers. We had a warm conversation thanking each other and parting ways."
"The student and I went through selected math problems from past SAT exams. It's clear he is incredibly bright for his age, and there wasn't a topic we went over that he was clueless about. His difficulties (and by that I mean what's causing him to answer a few questions incorrectly) typically lie in a misapplication or some basic order of operations issues or the plugging in of the wrong number. These things happen, and the best way to avoid them is through practice and by checking his work. I recommended that he begin using values (something he was already doing to a large degree) for even more problems than he was currently doing. The only other area that gave him issue was when he honestly didn't know how to set up the problem based on what the question was asking. We talked about isolating key words in the question in order to point him on the right track and that the answer choices themselves often provide clues on how to solve the problem if not allow for him to outright eliminate several choices. When pushed and prodded, he did really well at solving problems that he at first seemed lost as to how to tackle. Again, practicing more of these problems will be key for him being comfortable with doing this kind of work on his own."