Recent Tutoring Session Reviews
"The student and I spent our session this evening working on an English paper that he was writing on The Odyssey. He was already well-prepared for the essay, which was based on a prompt we worked together on previously. He had his thesis ready, so we were able to spend our time discussing the supportive arguments and finding quotes from the original text. We did some investigative research together on terms from the text to better inform his paper, and also discussed the logistics of integrating quotations and explaining them in academic writing. We also discussed the benefits of two-part titles, which the student was previously unfamiliar with. By the end of the session, he had a solid essay with great evidence to support his thesis. As always, he was engaged, fun, and generally a joy to work with. He has a natural curiosity that flourishes with a little encouragement, and I am thrilled to see him becoming increasingly interested in his coursework."
"During my session with the student we worked on research for her upcoming paper on female athletes and the derogatory expression "like a girl." While analyzing the research she had already done and discussing what conclusions could be drawn from her research so far, we began to explore other avenues related to her thesis: Lauren Greenfield, the director of the Always Like a Girl commercial and her work in Girl Culture, the evolutionary psychology explanation behind "mean girls" and the girls in history who helped revolutionize the little leagues and permit female players. The student did not seem to struggle very much with the research, she was learning how to conduct research for her paper as we worked together. She seemed very interested in all the material we were gathering during the research. A strategy I shared with her, to help organize her ideas during her research, is to highlight any quotes she thinks might be useful in her paper, and post-it note each highlight with her interpretation of its meaning and its relation to her thesis. For extra practice, she should go through all the articles we found and printed, highlight the important information, and begin post-it noting her interpretations to the articles. I think the student is finding great material for what will be a very interesting and insightful final paper!"
"Yesterday, the student and I met for the first time. We worked on her application essay for the program. She had a rough draft that needed a thesis statement and structured into paragraphs. We created an outline for a five paragraph, one page essay and will work on turning that outline into a final draft of an essay next week."
"Today the student and I practiced her reading skills. We read for about 15 minutes from a "Diary of a Wimpy Kid" book. Then we played the reading game about our solar system. I continue to have to remind the student that when she does not know a word, she needs to stop reading and ask me to help her sound out the word. The student used her reading guide strip for the book and I noticed an improvement in her fluency."
"The student worked on a news writing assignment. The article assignment is based on the story "3 Little Pigs." I offered her a lot of support by asking her a number of questions about the 5 W's in the story. I wanted her to think about cause and effect in terms of the characters' actions in the story. We worked on being cognizant of sentence fragments and punctuation. She is gaining an awareness of subordinate and independent clauses and realizes more quickly when punctuation is needed."
"Student 1 and I had some exciting news this week: a reply from his business letter project. We are currently working on nonfiction writing for a competition. He is very fluid with vocabulary, so we are focusing on cohesion. Student 2 and I did a scavenger hunt with consonant blends. He is very strong with sounds, but the letters all together seem overwhelming to him at times. We will continue working on this skill."