Talking about our work at the Rollins College Student Resource Center, Florida, USA

Posts tagged ‘steps 4-8’

Journal 1

Step 4: Identify Thought Process

She began by saying that she completely doesn’t understand the verb tenses that the teacher was going over in class, which she will be tested on in the final exam. She kept looking at her watch during the 30 minute session which told me that she is very impatient and in a hurry to get out as opposed to perhaps really understand the material. So to get her to pay more attention, I asked her to identify which verb tenses are used in which cases in French and what do they mean if translated into English from French. By having her talk through the uses of each verb tense I was able to figure out what she doesn’t understand and how I can help her understand it better.

Set an agenda for the session:

Our goal for the short session was to review some of the French verb tenses, primarily various kinds of future and conditional, and make sure that the client understands which tense is used in which case. First, we used her textbook for explanations and examples, and then I had her tell me which tenses will be used in the examples I presented to her.

Addressing the task:

I explained to the student what each verb tense translates to in English,  as a review and an enhancement for what the teacher taught her. As a follow up, during the session, I wrote down several sentences which included tenses such as: futur anterieur, futur simple, conditionnel et conditionnel passe, but left the space where the verb has to go, blank.  As such, the student will have to fill in the blank with the correct verb tense and conjugated; in this way, practicing what she had already known.

Have the client summarize:

This was the most important step of the session. And even though, my client was still in a hurry to leave, I encouraged her to focus and reiterate what she had learned during the session i.e. what (for example) the verb in futur anterieur means when translated into English and so on and so forth. As she was explaining in to me, she also wrote it down so she has it for reference when studying for a test.


Steps 4-8 of the Tutoring Cycle

Steps 4-8 of the tutoring cycle:

Most of the tutoring sessions I’ve had have been about improving study skills. Studying for a psychology test isn’t necessarily an intuitive process, especially in expansive courses like Into. Most people come to me to clarify concepts and find ways to apply these concepts to a test format. Here is how I (tried to) follow steps 4-8 of the tutor cycle when a girl came to me for help on an Intro test.

Step 4: Identify thought process:

She started the session by saying that she had done poorly on the last test, and wanted to go over the concepts for an upcoming test. I first asked her how she had studied for the last test, and what seemed to work and what didn’t. She said she had studied from the notes in her book, but that the test was more heavily weighted on lecture discussions than she had expected. It seemed that in talking about what did and didn’t work for her she was able to identify her own problems and come up with some better ideas for herself with very little prompting from me. I suggested compiling a “master outline” of concepts from both the book and from lectures, as this seemed to be her major point of weakness. We also decided that making flashcards based on this outline might help her solidify the concepts because she mentioned that she learns best by reading and re-writing.

Step 5: Set and agenda for the session:

I often forget step 5 and end up rushing at the end of the session. During this session we started by going through the notes and putting a star next to concepts that she wanted to discuss so we could get an idea of how much there was to cover. In an ideal session, we could have come up with a more organized schedule that included which concepts were most important, rather than simply lumping them all together.

Step 6: Address the task:

During this particular session, we used both her inclass notes and her book to identify concepts that she thought would be on the test. We then tried to come up with relevant examples of these concepts. For example, we talked about classical conditioning and how it applies to learning in general. I gave her an example, and then asked her to come up with her own example of how she has observed classical conditioning in her everyday experiences. We also discussed ways to compile her class and home notes so that when it came time to study she wouldn’t feel so overwhelmed.

Steps 7&8: Have the client summarize.

This step is perhaps the most important step in the cycle. I’ve had sessions where I was frustrated to find out in the end that the client hadn’t absorbed any of the concepts we had discussed, despite my many attempts to engage her. Here is where I try to relate the concepts and ideas we have discussed back to the overall “big picture.” I usually ask them to re-define the terms we had discussed, provide examples, and tell me how it relates to other terms and ideas. In psychology, especially intro, it’s easy to get caught up in memorizing terms without actually understanding why they are relevant and how they all connect. I usually make a point to leave time at the end for this step, although it’s not always possible in half hour sessions.

Margaret’s Journal

4. identify the task: usually at the beginning of each session, I ask the student, “what are your goals for this session?” It gives me a better understanding of how to help the student, as well as gets them talking about the project in general. What’s the topic, how far along they are, etc.
5. set the agenda: depending on the assignment, I like to get through as much as possible. If I’m doing the final edit of a paper, I warn them that we may not get all the way through it, and instead work on section by section. When we run out of time (which has happened a couple times), I tell the tutee to refer back to old sections, look at the recommendations I made, and see if they can apply any to the unedited parts.
6. address the task: if we are brainstorming, I have the tutee come up with a list of ideas that describe the paper. It gives me a vibe to work with, and helps me understand what the student is trying to say so that I can help them if it’s not working.
7. summarize the content: content of each session is always reviewed both verbally, and on the carbon copy sheets given to the student. I always try to remind them of what the goals are, what steps are left to be taken, and to refer back to the notes sheet if necessary.
8. summarize process: I give the students steps to follow for the future, compliment them on what they did successfully or what is positive about their work, and mention areas for improvement.

I like to think that I follow most of these steps subconsciously, and that they come fairly naturally to me in the process of tutoring. I always start out the session with step 4, and follow consecutively through the other steps. I totally agree with rkon about the spring 08 tutors. “Just like “monicanguyen” from the Spring ’08 tutors’ posts, I often find it difficult to move on from one topic so quickly to the next due to time. “ I often get have trouble covering everything the student wants to, and shifting from one project to another. I guess maybe that will help me get more appointments…if I can’t do it all in one, they’ll have to come back for more! “And in “juliesboy7” I think sometimes clients really do need a refresher of the basics that they have forgotten before they can complete the task at hand.” This is soooo true for CMC students. We get so loaded down with terminology we have never heard of before in CMC 100, that it’s often hard to remember how they link to each other. Often times, the CMC 100 students don’t even understand the terms to begin with, so I feel like I’m always starting from scratch, reminding people of the important terms they memorized for their exams but have slipped away over time.

Journal 1 Tutor Cycle

What I have done would do in  perfect world in steps 4-8 in the tutor cycle.

Step 4: identifying the task

Usually when I start a tutoring session I ask my clients what they want to work on today, therefore they have the opportunity to tell me what they are having trouble with in the course. I also try to let them explain to me what they have been doing to try to solve the problem. This is more difficult with clients who come in and want me to explain every detail to them, and don’t just have problems on specific problems.

Step 5: Set and agenda

Usually I let the client decide what they wan to do in the session. Whether it be going over homework problems, a previous test, or reviewing for a upcoming test. Usually when they decide what we are going to work on it is easy to stick to the agenda. It is important that the clients come in with something they want to accomplish therefore we have a goal to work toward.

Step 6: Address the task-follow the agenda

This is usually easy to do. I start by having the client get out everything they will need to work on the task at hand. Usually during a tutoring session my client and I are able to get through all of the questions they have. I also make sure the clients know that when they get stuck they should go back to the section outline and see if any examples in the book can help them solve the problem they are working on.

Step 7&8: Have the client summarize the content and process

Here I have/would have the client think about what we did today, and how this has helped them solve the problems they were having. It is important that they reflect on what they learned and what they did so in the future they will be able to apply both to what they are working on.

During my tutoring sessions it is sometimes difficult for me to stick to the 12-step method of the tutoring cycle. Things I always do is greet my clients, and ask them where they would prefer to sit. I am also really consistent with identifying what the client is doing to approach the problems they are having. Step 6 is also something I do consistently. In math, the two best resources are your book and your teacher, so I think it is important that the client becomes familiar with their book, and sees the ways in which their book can help them solve some of their problems. Usually by looking at examples in the book you can solve homework problems assigned to you by the teacher.

Steps that I am not so good at following are steps 7 and 8. I don’t always have the client summarize what we have gone over in the session. However, I should start doing this because this is a good way to reinforce what the client has been doing for the past hour. Also step 11 is a step I don’t always follow. I don’t always have clients plan ahead, and arrange what they should do next. However this could help the client prepare for what they are going to accomplish away from the tutoring session.

Tutoring Cycle

Identify the thought processes of the student: This may be one of the most important concepts of the tutoring cycle. It is sometimes difficult for me to identify the student’s methods of approaching a question, especially when he/she has no idea how to solve it. This takes careful observation, and the possession of “people skills” as well. One may be able to find out how someone approaches a question by how he sets up a problem or how he asks a question…who knows? In statistics, it is pretty easy to tell if the student understands it or not. If he/she does not, then giving a hint is key; this allows the student to think and potentially identify his/her thought processes. Once I have discovered how a student likes to approach the work, it makes the session sooooooo much easier. (more…)

Mtg. 2/27 ALL; meantime, work on projects & journal #2 new tutors

Foreign language tutors met last week, 2/13. Quantitative and science tutors met two weeks before that. Next Wednesday, 2/27, we will ALL meet together.

In the meantime, please attend to a couple things: your projects (everyone enrolled in TPJ110) and your second journal (of four) (new tutors in TPJ 107). (more…)

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