Tutor profile: Samantha M.
How do you start writing?
Most of the time, students I have worked with struggle with just getting started on a paper or essay. The key is to make an outline and start writing down what you want to talk about and when. The outline process helps you organize your thoughts and create a path with a solid direction. There are a few things you will know right away such as you need an introduction, a body, and a conclusion. Regardless of how long your paper is, you will need all of those parts. The beauty of creating an outline is that your ideas and thoughts will change as you write them on paper. The writing process is also a long thought process and it really helps to write it down and think it through.
Subject: Study Skills
What are you studying for?
If you are studying to prepare for a standardized test, then you need to study by taking practice tests. This means either accessing a practice test that is already made or creating your own. Making your own tests is very effective because you are exposing yourself to the material several times and testing yourself on the content. If you are studying for a science test, you need to know vocabulary. The best way to study for vocabulary is by using notecards. Handwriting the notecards is an essential part of this study method because your brain will remember you writing the word and its definition so that when you test yourself on it, you already have a background with the word. Making vocabulary as concrete as possible is also important. This means while you are studying, find an object you can hold, see, or at least picture for every word. This will help if you have a photographic memory. It also makes more connections in your brain which will improve your recall. If you are studying for a math test, you need to practice the math problems and memorize the steps to complete them. This applies to physics and any science that involves math as well. If you are preparing for a writing test, you need to know the structure of the essay prior to the test. Memorize how many paragraphs you need and what should go in each paragraph. You may need to practice spelling and basic grammar as well. Studying for a test will look different depending on what you are being tested on.
How do trees get water all the way to the very top of the tree?
Trees get water from under the ground. Their roots absorb the water and the water travels from there all the way to the highest leaf. Water is polar which means it attracts itself. A water molecule will be attracted to another water molecule. This attraction is called cohesion. Because of cohesion, water molecules will join together and fill the small, narrow spaces in the roots and xylem (plant tissue) in the tree. Because the space is narrow, the water is pushed upwards. Adhesion is when water is attracted to other surfaces such as the walls of the xylem that it travels through. This causes the water to "crawl" up the stem of the plant. At the leaves, there are small openings called stomata. This is where photosynthesis occurs and oxygen and water leave the leaf through the stomata. This opening and flow of air causes a straw-like vacuum to occur. This vacuum pulls the water from the bottom of the tree at its roots all the way up to each of the leaves.
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