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Tutor profile: Iris M.

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Iris M.
Published writer, translator, academic researcher -- and tutor
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Questions

Subject: Latin

TutorMe
Question:

What's a good way to remember noun endings for different genders and declensions in each case?

Inactive
Iris M.
Answer:

It's likely that your Latin teacher has already told you this, but their advice is right: chant! Although it might seem embarrassing, chanting is really the best way to memorize noun endings as you are learning each one. It also helps me to write down an empty grid with each case and each gender for a given declension, and then fill in the chart with all the noun endings I can think of. After years of chanting and memorizing this way, I don't think I will ever forget those noun endings!

Subject: German

TutorMe
Question:

What is the use of the genitive case in German?

Inactive
Iris M.
Answer:

Something you don't often hear in German classes is that the genitive case exists in English, too! Although we don't modify our nouns for this purpose, the genitive is any word that implies possession. In English, we have two main ways of doing this-- "of," and an "s" at the end of a word. For example, we could say "Iris's book" or "the book of Iris." In German, you can consider the genitive case to be the form of a noun that indicates possession. Adding a genitive particle like "des" is similar to using "of" in English.

Subject: Writing

TutorMe
Question:

What's the most important thing to do when you're writing an introductory paragraph to an essay?

Inactive
Iris M.
Answer:

People often are told in school to include a "hook" sentence at the beginning of their introductory paragraph, to catch the reader's attention. I actually think that while they can sometimes be catchy or entertaining, "hooks" can seem unprofessional, and often are unrelated to the body of the essay itself. When you're writing an introductory paragraph, the most important things to do are to introduce all the terms you will use throughout your essay, and explain how they are related, so that readers are not surprised when they come up later on. A thesis statement should come at the end of the introductory paragraph, and can be more than one sentence-- I often think it's best to have a thesis statement in two parts, that presents a question and how it is resolved in your paper. And as for that first, "hook" sentence, try to come up with something that sounds intriguing, but is still completely related to the subject of your essay.

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