Sunday, September 19, 2010

First tutoring session complete!

The session went great. I think he learned a lot and I did too.

One of the things we worked on was his book report project for English 10. This taught me a valuable lesson: be very clear about what kinds of books kids can choose when doing a book report on a book of their choice! Sam decided to pick 'Harry Potter, the philosophers stone'. Of course, he has read it almost 7 times now in his native language--Korean. So there it is teachers to be! Make sure that you make it clear that students cannot pick books that a) have been made in to movies or b) that are widely read/known like Harry Potter, Twilight or Lord of the Rings etc.

So now, what do I do? I am not his mother nor am I his English 10 teacher so I couldn't rat him out ... instead I just advised him against it and told him it would be really hard to complete the assignments having already read the book and knowing what to expect. So, I will keep advising him to read the English version of the book and hopefully he will feel comfortable enough with the story that he might actually try re-reading it.

I also think this might mean I have to assign my own readings for him to really practice his English.

Another good thing about the session is that I was able to see how his teacher laid out the book report assignment.

For this assignment the teacher explained that the report was out of 6. He then explained how students could get their desired marks. For instance:

"The minimum you must do for this assignment is numbers 1, 2 and 3"
He then goes on to explain different things the student can choose to do in order to get 6 out of 6.
I really like this way of laying it out because it gives the students the chance to choose how much work they want to do and what kind of mark they want to get.

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