Recent Tutoring Session Reviews
"We continued to work on his American studies project on the 1920s. We discussed ideas for the project (which involves traveling back to the 1920s to change one thing), including helping to develop the polio vaccine or giving information about a disease to prevent an epidemic. The student and I researched these ideas."
"The student completed an ELA assignment. We reviewed his math project and organized/modified his history project."
"We started off talking about the student's book for the first half hour- his homework was to read and create a short summary. He did fairly well with the summary aspect, and I could only think of one more detail to improve it with. Grammatically speaking, it was choppy but still made sense. I had him read chapter 3 while in session as well (it was less than a page), and we talked about this author's use of building context and character development within the chapters. This book starts out a little slow, and the first 2 chapters are devoted to context. The author still jumps around, which confused the student a little. I had him work and think of international trips that he's taken to further relate to the main character. We also drew a character map. I'm hoping to instill a few habits- first, drawing character maps. Also, I kept writing "Who/What/When/Where/Why/How" in the margins in all of his summaries and reaction paper, and we checked off each one to ensure that he had answered that question. The student seems to take great joy in checking off each Who/What/When/Where/Why/How, so I'm going to try to repeat this exercise. We then moved onto another book for the next 30 minutes. The student had watched the movie from the 1980s, and we talked about the differences between the movie and the book. I gave the student 10 minutes to write a one-page reaction essay, and stopped him at the 10 minute mark. He had about 3/4 of the page, but was relieved when I told him I'd rather have less of the page, and better writing; than the entire page written in bad writing. I also had him spend about 1-2 minutes to proofread the essay. Overall, his reaction essay was good- there were a few sentences out of place, and he could have added more at the end (I think time was the issue), but it had the main plot lines and his reaction to each. We then spent the last half hour reading a poem I first had the student read the poem, highlighting any words he didn't know. There were 4 quatrains, so it was less of a storytelling poem and more of a large-picture analogy poem. There was less jargon, and it was easier to read than some of his previous poems. The student really enjoyed analyzing the poem, counting the verbs, adjectives, and repetitive phrases. He had more issues with the big-picture figurative metaphor of the poem. I plan on analyzing more poems, combining the two- we talked about having an outside/in approach (first you analyze the big-picture themes and nuances, then you go inside and get down to counting verbs and finding which couplet rhymes with which). For homework, I want the student to fix his reaction essay, moving the one sentence and adding more at the end. I also want him to read another story, to write a one-paragraph summary, and to write a one-paragraph reaction."