I arrived at the comp fellow’s office a few minutes before the scheduled appointment time to get my laptop, notes and the course syllabus within reach just in case I would need to refer back to any of the sources during the upcoming session. Being punctual allows the tutor to gain order and control over a tutoring session. Displaying proper organization prior to the start of an appointment creates an educational environment. This organizational pattern is recognizable not only by the students but also by professionals across all course curriculum's. This instills the students with a sense of security and trust in the tutor’s authority.
As a writing fellow I am always appreciative when a student displays signs of preparation before a session. During a session last week it was apparent that the student reviewed the syllabus beforehand seeing as she entered the session with an already clear topic for her research assignment, on the city of Paris. The directions for the research assignment stated to pick a destination to travel or means of transportation, since she had already made a decision we were able to focus on the research and writing portion rather than the brainstorming phase.
This example relates back to my previous statement about organizational patterns and how recognizable it is not only for students but also for tutors or professors. I appreciated her genuine interest in the subject and the time she put into the assignment before our session; it confirmed that the student cared about her coursework. Getting students excited about writing and discovering how they can relate their interests to the projects assigned is a rewarding experience for me as a tutor because at the end of the day writing is a unique journey and when given enough time and attention it is a thrilling journey full of understanding of the expectations one has for themselves as well as the expectations of others.
Popular posts from this blog
I have posted a poll in the IWCA forums: IWCA Forum: Peer Tutor => What do we call ourselves: the poll! It is a part of an earlier discussion that kind of petered out about the titles used for writing center workers. Please take a moment and vote! If you don't have an account on the forum, you can register for one by clicking on the "Register" link (next to the rocket icon in the top-right of the page.) Don't forget to state your institutional affiliation when you request and account. (That's how the IWCA Forum keeps out spam accounts.)
So, I was driving to school today and as always was listening to NPR (that's my self-promoting conversational piece informing you on how intelligent and connected I am) really, I just like the coverage on the campaign and "This American Life." Okay, I am already getting off topic and I haven't even gotten on topic yet. Anyhow, the story I was listening to was about a woman who used to be a part of the admissions committee at Dartmouth and is now working as an independent consultant helping students with the admissions process for schools. For a cool $40,000, she will work with you from 9th grade to graduation to help prepare you for your college admissions process. And for the budget price of $14,000, she will help you write and revise your college application essay. So, how in the world does this correlate to our world? Well, her work with college applications includes helping students decide on effective topics (staying away from "teen angst, or
I remember my first year as a peer tutor at my high school’s writing center. I could not have been more than fifteen years old when I went to my very first orientation session. I had absolutely no idea what I was doing, but I was enthusiastic to learn. That year, the managers of my center were very excited to tell us all about something called minimalist theory. Minimalist theory is a consulting style that focuses on getting students to think for themselves. I won’t go too much in depth here, but if you want to know more I wrote a different article on the subject called “Minimalist Theory: When and When not to Use it.” The managers pushed this theory pretty hard, undoubtably because they wanted us to focus on practicing it. However, in doing so I, as an itty-bitty baby consultant, internalized the message that minimalist theory was the only way to teach writing. This was a problem for a number of reasons but the main one is that minimalism is most certainly NOT th