Recent Tutoring Session Reviews
"Prior to the session I prepared a binder with several easy to follow writing aids. They included comma rules, the five types of writing, the writing process, peer editing guides, compound sentence forming help, and a few others. I went over these aids with the student during the first 30 minutes of the session. The first writing activity I had her complete was a 10% summary sheet (I use this in the classroom quite a bit). The summary was completed on a surfing article. The student is an avid surfer. After she read and highlighted the article, she completed the sheet. The final task was to turn the summary into a well drafted paragraph. After she completed the paragraph we looked at it together and talked about how to improve it. The student was focused and had a good attitude throughout."
"Since the student is still in the process of writing this paper, we didn't do much proofreading; instead, she worked on her content. She's writing a paper about how Disney music has affected our culture, and one of the things I quickly noticed her doing was assuming, or at the very least communicating in her paper, that Disney movies portray the past and other cultures entirely accurately. We spent a great deal of time discussing how that was definitely not the case and she needed to be certain that she never suggested as much in her paper. I stuck with it because I felt this was an important lesson for her to learn: that there is a often difference between what is portrayed and what is true and we must be careful to recognize that there is a difference when we write papers like this one. This exercise of critical thinking will be invaluable to her both in life and in her continued education, so I was very happy to see that by the end of the session she seemed to be picking up the concept well and was adding to and changing her paper in a way that reflected this understanding and made much better arguments."
"Today was my first session with the student. He was working on a writing assignment that he has a rough draft of due on Thursday. Though he still had a little research and writing to do, I thought it would be a good idea to read through it slowly and correct any errors we came across. For the most part, his essay was very well written. When we approached a sentence that either of us felt sounded awkward, we'd stop and try to work through possible alternative phrasing together. He was very good at recognizing when something didn't sound quite right (which is extremely important and many 7th graders don't notice these subtleties at all). He was also very receptive to my advice, and hopefully as he finishes writing the essay he will use the approach we took to articulate his ideas."
"The student and I met today to work on drafts of her scholarship essays for her first choice school. One of the drafts--about how to create a just world--was in pretty good shape. We worked on reorganization and spruced up some of the wording. The other--about her leadership potential--was mostly anecdotal, so we condensed her anecdote and worked on creating more specific examples of her leadership potential and how that will translate into her career choices. For the next session, she is going to work up another more final draft of the leadership essay and research her next two schools on the list to make some decisions about whether or not to apply for their scholarships."
"The student and I practiced discerning fact from opinion; we are applying that for an argumentative essay. The student and I read from "The Cat," and he mentioned later that he loved reading. I like his positive thinking. We also created a story as we built a structure."
"The student and I practiced his sight words, then captured an additional 17 words. Then he read two book, "Mr. Brown Can Moo" and "Everything Goes: Henry Goes Skating." Then we practiced -oi, -oy, -ou, and -ow words."