I recently published the following post on my business site. PSAT testing should not be missed, whether you use it to practice for the SAT or hoping to be awarded National Merit Scholar. You can click through, and read about how to prepare for and find information for taking the PSAT.
HURRY! You need to register NOW if you want to catch this OCTOBER’s test date (this is critical for High School Juniors).
October is PSAT Test-taking time. Although considered the precursor to the SAT, the PSAT is extremely important, and not to be missed. As it is offered only ONCE A YEAR, this test can easily be missed. 2017 dates are October 11 (Primary) and October 14 (Saturday).
In my limited opinion, the above is true, except for test taking. Every child should do better if they PRACTICE, and practice some more.
The SAT can be taken multiple times, and there are many resources for practicing. So I just wanted to share with you what we accomplished within our homeschool (though the method is recommended for any child: public, private or home school).
- Test Prep Seminar or Workshop – Although many co-ops offer math or essay workshops, College Prep Genius (affiliated link) has been popular in our area. My co-op, Christian Educators Resource Center, even offered the workshop until 2016 when the NEW 2016 SAT came out.
- My oldest Logic Smart son attended this live workshop and received the workbook on paper. As the new material was still being edited, he has access to the eTextbook (Kindle) and Seminar Videos through an on-line account.
- During the seminar – they completed a series of PRACTICE questions.
- From Amazon, we purchased the NEW 2016 SAT Test Prep book published by the College Board.
- Using KHAN Academy’s SAT app, my oldest was able to complete four (4) PRACTICE tests, scan them into the app, and receive immediate feedback.
- Princeton Review’s Test Center (Plano, TX) -Offers weekly and monthly classes, and test PRACTICE for SAT and ACT.
- He was offered an opportunity to take the SAT PRACTICE test for free through Princeton Review in April 2016 and again in April 2017 (MORE PRACTICE).
- Official SAT Test – Students can take the SAT as many times as they like.
- Although we consider it just PRACTICE, it provides us an opportunity to see if the methods are working.
What does all this PRACTICE mean? My oldest Logic Smart son was able to improve his SAT score by 50-100 points, every time he completed it (officially and unofficially).
Because the SAT and PSAT have time limitations, and they are so important, many students have Test Anxiety. Although not all of the Anxiety can be cured with practice, being familiar with the test, and what is expected, can help many students alleviate test anxiety to a workable level. PRACTICE, PRACTICE, PRACTICE.
Attending workshops whenever they are available, taking PRACTICE tests at home, and taking the SAT at least once a year (starting in the 9th Grade), can go a long way to having improved scores. If you haven’t started early, then I highly recommend taking classes through Princeton Review or Kaplan. If these are not available, a variety of test prep books are available, and Jean Burke provides her workshops on-line at College Prep Genius.
For my youngest Body Smart daughter, test taking is NOT her thing. So the plan, as described in the above article, is to start with the PSAT 8/9 in the spring of Eighth Grade , and PRACTICE the SAT as much as possible. As she is undecided regarding college, I promise to do my best not to torture her. But until she makes a decision, I wish her to be prepared for anything.
- Shop Local! – As a bookstore manager myself, I highly recommend shopping your local homeschool resource store. They work really hard to be there for their homeschool families year round! They may be connected to a local co-op or support group that can provide SAT and PSAT preparatory classes and seminars
- Shop the publishers directly! These publishers put much energy into creating great homeschool resources, so I recommend shopping their web-sites:
- CollegePrepGenius.com (affiliated link)
- By clicking links into Amazon Marketplace or College Prep Genius, I do earn a small commission based on your purchase. It doesn’t change the listed price, it just supports my glorious book addiction and my new blog addiction.