Tutor profile: Emily C.
When do you use the imperfect or preterite tense?
Both the preterite and imperfect are past tenses, but they are used in different contexts. In the most basic terms, we use the preterite for definitive actions that occurred in a single moment in the past. For instance, I ate the burger, ate would be written in preterite tense. The imperfect tense is for actions that take place over a period of time, represent a state of being, descriptions of people or environments, and repetitive actions. For instance, the imperfect tense could be used when describing what you were like as a child, what the weather was like, or what you did with your family every Sunday. A visual representation to help understand the different between the preterite and imperfect is to imagine a wavy line. Then, there are vertical lines interrupting the wave. The wave represents the imperfect, ongoing, background, while the vertical lines represent the preterite, interrupting, singular actions in a particular moment in time.
How can you craft a comprehensive and clear thesis statement for your essay?
The thesis statement is the last sentence in the introductory paragraph, but it is best practice to write your thesis statement before starting your essay. Thesis statements tell your reader what your essay is about, or what your central message is, and how you will explain it. The first step is to think about what your message is. For example, let's say you are writing a persuasive essay on how outdoor play is far better for children than playing with technology. That is your main message. Now, you have to determine what your three main points are that support your message. For example, you can say outdoor play encourages socialization with other children, outdoor play often includes physical exercise and is healthier for children, and outdoor play often involves imagination, which promotes creative thinking. So, your thesis statement would look something like this: In this essay, I will demonstrate how outdoor play is far more beneficial for children than technology because outdoor play encourages socialization, promotes active lifestyles, and encourages creative thinking.
When solving for a variable, what are the basic steps for finding the answer?
Our goal is to isolate the variable. For example, if the problem is 4x + 28 = 88, we want to get x by itself. In other words, we want to move everything on the side of the equation with x to the other side. We can accomplish this by combining like terms and performing opposite operations. For example, our like terms are 28 and 88 because they are simple numbers with no variables. To combine them, we perform the opposite operation. We see a +28, so we subtract 28 from both sides, since subtraction is the opposite of addition. Remember, what we do to one side of the equation, we do to the other. So after that, we are left with 4x = 60. The next step is to isolate x with the opposite operation. 4 and x are being multiplied, so the opposite is division. We divide both sides by 4 and we are left with x = 15.
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