Be Prepared! The night before, collect plenty of sharpened #2 pencils an eraser a small pencil sharpener (in case your pencils break during the exam) a watch (you cannot rely on the proctor and there may not be a wall clock or it may be on the wall behind your seat) your calculator your admission ticket your identification directions to the testing center tissues medicine (if necessary) disposable earplugs (if you find the background noise of people coughing and fidgeting distracting) It may be helpful to collect these items in a clear plastic (Ziploc) bag that you can grab and go in the morning. If you have to search for these items in the morning, you are likely to forget something or become frazzled. Eat a substantial breakfast that will provide you with sufficient energy throughout the test. Do not eat a stack of pancakes as it will make you sluggish. Eggs or some protein is a good option. Hydrate yourself so you will not become thirsty... read more
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After an absence due to the busiest part of the academic year, I am back in search of tutoring clients for the spring/summer. Before June 17, I will have hours available after school. As of June 17, my hours are much more flexible!
As the school year begins to wind down, I have noticed that many of the students I help have begun the journey of signing up for next years classes or, better yet, deciding where they will start the next chapter of their life in college. I began to reminisce on my Senior year of high school and how stressful that year was for me. It was so easy to become overwhelmed by all of the choices that (seemed to be) abruptly placed in front of me: what college should I go to? What should I major in? Should I choose a college close to home? Should I rush? Should I go to a college with all of my friends? Will I absolutely hate it? I ended up choosing the wrong college and transferred twice until I finally ended up a college that I love! I say all of this to jump into the idea of NOT stressing about this time of year. Yes, I did say not to stress. College is a time of change. That change, no matter how terrifying it may seem, will take you on a wonderful journey that no one can plan... read more
Hi there! This is my first blog post! I thought I would test this out before I post regularly... It comes with the tutor profile, so why not?! I just want to give my number one piece of advice which has been true for every standardized test I have come across, no matter what grade level. I wish I had known this or understood this concept when I was growing up - I was always a good student, but maybe I would've been better! Here is the scenario. You're faced with this gigantic passage and you see that it's something incredibly boring. Immediately, your brain shuts off as you attempt to crawl your way to the end of it. You also feel the pressure of the clock, so instead of reading the passage, you kind of end up skimming over it. Then there are all these questions and you have no idea where to begin because you didn't absorb a single thing you read, so in a panic, you start guessing, even if those guesses mean penalties (on certain tests). Sound like you? Here is... read more
Good Evening, I am the Learning Assistance Coordinator for Pfeiffer University. I teach 3 developmental English courses on campus, coordinate the writing lab, train peer tutors, and also lead workshops for note taking, study skills, and test taking strategies. Starting April 6th, I will be holding a SAT study group on campus to help High School students with each part of the SAT. We will meet on Saturdays 9-12 (1 hour for each section of the SAT) and one hour on Sundays individually. The individual hour ensures that you are comprehending the material and get specific guidance for what you may be struggling to understand. These sessions will last for 12 weeks, but may continue further if there is enough interest. I have 2013 SAT study guides and practice tests directly from the college board. All of these materials will be included. Please e-mail me to become a part of this process. Thank You, Todd "Chip" D.
I have been responding to a lot of requests recently, yet got no further reply thereafter. Some students just wrote me that my rate is higher than others. Well, I have some say there, as I had students before who came back to me after they tried other tutors. The question is, would you rather pay more for a short time or pay less for a longer period of time? First, some students do not have a clear goal of the "deadline," which means they do not know to what extent they need to learn about certain subjects and until which date they need to achieve this goal. They would set up a schedule for one or two 1-hr lessons each week and see where it takes. The result is, after a long time, or after they couldn't make it to the classes for some time, they would lose their urge and quit the classes. In this way, they waste the money spent on previous sessions, even if they pay a less-than-usual rate. On the other hand, some students know what they are going to do and just work... read more
IF I could go back in time and give my younger self some advice on how to be a better student, be more successful in school, life, etc, I would definitely tell myself that being involved in everything comes at a cost. It is better to find a few things that you like to do, do them well and often, than feeling stressed because there is so much on your plate at one time. Being a 'Jack of all Trades' it is natural for me to dip my toes in different waters- all at the same time, but that does not mean that I can give 100% to any of them at that time. While I was able to get good grades (A- average) while in school, I was impressed by how much better I did- and felt about my work- the few times that I scaled back on my activities. Another piece of advice that I wish that I could bestow upon my younger self would be to learn how to speak up in a group setting when someone is not fulfilling their part of an agreement. Now, this said, the best way to do this would be in a tactful... read more
The clock is ticking, and the pressure is on. You have 25 minute to answer 40 questions, and it seems like each one is an obstacle. How can you possibly deal with all this? Prepare yourself well by getting expert help on test-taking strategies and practicing them over a period of two to four months. Private tutoring for the test you or your child need to get into a private high school, college, or graduate school will help you become confident and capable so you know what to expect when it comes time to impress everyone on the big day. There are many books, companies, and other solutions out there to help test-takers – which makes it feel almost as hard to know how to prep for an exam as it does just to take it! Find a one-on-one tutor who is truly devoted to helping people with personalized assistance, building on the tutee's strengths and weaknesses, so that by Test Day, they will have not only the skills they need but also the confidence of an old-time pro. Here... read more
When interviewing a prospective tutor, parents should ask about the tutor's skills and experience, and find out if the tutor truly enjoys teaching. When the tutor feels enthusiastic about the subject, and communicates well, the student has an opportunity to learn to enjoy the subject too. I recommend for parents to observe the first lesson to see the tutor's skills in action, and watch/listen carefully to future lessons when possible, to make sure the tutor has an encouraging, supportive attitude at all times. (Tutors should welcome and respond positively to the child's questions, and NEVER make the child feel "stupid," no matter what.) It is most important to have a safe and quiet place for studying, without distractions. I like to find a quiet table at a library, and work with students there. I welcome suggestions from parents, and I am always looking for ways to improve my teaching skills.
We've finally entered the final week before the March 9th SAT test. All my students have been working very hard, and your dedication is about to pay off. Just remember during this last week to practice the methods I've taught you so that they're second nature come test time. I wouldn't recommend studying at all past Thursday - remember what I've taught you about cramming vs. resting your brain. You're going to do great, so just remember my face - like you've seen countless times in our lessons - reminding you, "Don't. Panic." Here are some other good reminders for test day: -Get plenty of sleep the night before. You need a rested brain to reason properly -Eat a good breakfast that includes some protein. One of the worst feelings is being hungry halfway through the test -Bring three no. 2 pencils, a calculator (you can use a graphing one), your admission ticket, photo ID, and a snack -Don't. Panic. Good luck to you all. I know that you'll all use the methods... read more
Hello everyone. My name is Zachary L. and I am a tutor for Wyzant. I am certified to teach English, special education and history in the high school setting. For this particular post however, I would like to talk about something big coming up in March. It's not the NCAA Tourney, St. Patty's Day or my birthday, though all three are pretty important events. I want to take time to talk about the upcoming SAT's, coming on March 9. For many first time takers, the SATs can be a nerve racking experience. Did I remember to bring a No. 2 pencil? Do I have the right calculator? Will I forget what language I am supposed to write in? Well if you follow these simple steps, I promise you will have a successful SAT day. Step 1 - Get accustomed to the format of the test. For many taking this test for the first time, they may not know how the test will be formatted. I suggest prior to the test going online and doing a little research. Know about where you can write on the exam. Know... read more
According to Grigg, Daane, Jin, and Campbell (2003), more than 8 million middle and high school students are struggling readers, and among those, many are at a high risk of dropping out of school. A longitudinal study conducted by the U.S. Department of Education National Center for Education Statistics (2009) revealed schools with a higher percentage of minority students had a higher dropout rate, which increased as the school poverty level increased. Hispanic students and Black students had the highest dropout rates (11% and 10%, respectively) of all racial groups. According to a local public high school’s AYP report (Florida Department of Education, 2010b), 320 of 743 Hispanic students were on track to graduate. The 2010 AYP results revealed that 38 of 107 Black students were on track for graduation. In accordance with the Florida Legislature (2010), students aged 3-21 who have a disability and gifted students in grades K-12 are eligible for exceptional student services... read more
This area is for students or parents, especially those that are willing to put forth the effort to learn more, and be a better student, to achieve more ;-) To help my students I normally assign them 5 new words a day. Whether they open a physical dictionary or go to the links below, the important thing is that they learn and use new words. Tools ------ dictionary.com - a handy resource with access to multiple dictionaries in one place, especially if you don't have one in the home. worddynamo.com - great website that will send you (after you sign up for free) an email of a quickie multiple choice test of new words. It's a fun way to learn! khanacademy.org - Khan's academy - this is the best resource I've found both for kids and parents. You can sign up your little learner, no matter the age, and they can go out there at any time. - they have all sorts of subjects for free, your child can go at their own pace, and it's a marvelous place to learn with videos online,... read more
I find most folks today (kids & adults) have the most difficulty in reading and comprehension of what they are reading. Much of that is due to a lack of reading, most folks do not know much in the way of vocabulary (beyond every day useage) and that really hurts them when they come to testing. I also note that most folks don't put much time into reading for pleasure. And the GREAT thing is that it can be fixed!!!! (wahoo!!! life is good) Parents, it's important to impress upon your (hopefully) college bound child EARLY on as a freshman - sophomore - junior - senior, that the better they do, the better scholarships they will receive. And the more they know now, the less painful it will be when they get to college or other higher institutions of learning. Or out into the business world. ***Scientific studies repeatedly show (statistically) that repeated exposure to specific vocabulary enhances and increases the student's utilization of the words. Basically, if your... read more
One way you can be very well prepared to tackle your exam is by taking practice tests. You probably already knew this. However, here is something you might not have known. The best way to do the practice tests is to replicate real testing conditions as much as possible. In other words, wherever you take a practice test, try to make that space feel like the testing environment. This is very much the same philosophy as the "train as you fight" theory used by the military. it does them no good to practice their combat techniques in ideal conditions because they will not have those ideal conditions when they have to implement the techniques. In the same way, taking long breaks and doing only one section per day will not prepare you for the real testing environment. Here are some tips to help you create your own test-taking environment at home: *Get your parents to assist by planning with them when you need your home to be quiet. Make sure siblings are all in agreement and... read more
One key to success when you are preparing for your standardized test - or any test, for that matter - is to use visualization exercises. This may seem unscientific, and perhaps it is, but it is a techniques used by athletes, business professionals and successful test takers the world over. Many of my students have benefited from this type of exercise, saying it helped them settle their minds and focus on the test. The technique is to imagine how good it will feel after the test, knowing that you did your very best. Think about walking out of the test center, your head held high, with the knowledge that you did your best. That is a great feeling to imagine, no? In addition, make plans to do something fun after the test. This could be having lunch with friends, going to see a movie, maybe playing a pick-up soccer game, or even just relaxing. Whatever it is you do to celebrate, make concrete plans to do that after the test. This way, you will be looking forward to the test... read more
When it comes to standardized tests, the PSAT is often overlooked as an “unnecessary step” in the college entrance process. School guidance counselors steer students toward the SAT and ACT; many teachers mention it in their 6th and 7th grade classrooms. This leaves students and parents alike wondering whether they should even bother taking the PSAT. This article explains the purpose of the PSAT test itself and lists four (4) reasons students should take the PSAT and the benefits of doing so. What is the PSAT test, anyway? First, PSAT stands for “Preliminary Scholastic Assessment Test”. In some places, you may see it paired with the NMSQT, or National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test, as in “PSAT/ NMSQT”. The acronym describes its purpose: to test a student’s readiness to take the SAT, to serve as a practice test for the SAT, and to determine student’s eligibility for National Merit Scholarships. So, contrary to popular belief, PSAT scores DO matter if you want to qualify... read more
What method of inquiry do we tend to rely on to communicate with others? We often rely on questions to do so. While this can provide answers to us that suffice, we tend to only ask simple clarifying questions rather than open- ended inquiries. For example, if you were to ask your son or daughter if they understood your instructions to clean their room, chances are you will receive merely a "yes" or "no" answer. In an open-ended inquiry, your would ask instead, "What did I request of you to do...?" Asking open-ended questions evoke deeper thought from others and lead to better understanding and communication. Practicing this simple form of communicating can help you and others you interact with become successful conversationalist. So the next time you need to know something, ask the questions that will ensure that both you and the other party you are communicating with understand one another on a deeper, clearer level. Happy Thinking!
Now is the time I receive a lot of questions from prospective students and current students about the SAT. So here are my steps to achieve success with the SAT. 1. With any goal, you want to look at goal completion and move backward. With that I mean, say you want to take the SAT test on May 4, 2013, move back at least 3 months and that is the time you should start prepping for the test. In this example, you will need to commence your studying by February 1. 2. Go to http://www.collegeboard.org, create a profile and sign up to take the test. Take a tour within the collegeboard website, as they have some great resources. 3. Did you purchase the official SAT study guide? You can purchase at Amazon http://www.amazon.com/The-Official-SAT-Study-Guide/dp/0874478529/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1357660680&sr=8-1&keywords=sat+book or through the collegeboard website. 4. Take one of the practice tests in the back of the SAT book. That will give you a baseline idea of the areas... read more
How do you decide? Well there is a KEY piece of information that most students/parents don't consider because: (1) they don't know about it, and (2) it's definitely counter-intuitive, if not downright irrational. And what is this critical, missing nugget of knowledge? Why it's "SUPER SCORING," also known as "SAT® Score-Use Practices." Super scoring comes in six delectable flavors: 1. Highest Section Scores Across Test Dates — Version 1 (Highest M, CR, W) 2. Highest Section Scores Across Test Dates — Version 2 (Highest M, CR, W) 3. Single Highest Test Date — Version 1 (Sum of M+CR+W) 4. Single Highest Test Date — Version 2 (Sum of M+CR+W) 5. All SAT® Scores Required for Review and the ever popular 6. Contact Institution for Information What does all of this gobbledygook mean? It means that a student applying to my Alma Mater (Columbia University), which uses "Highest Section Scores Across Test Dates — Version 1", could (in theory) take the... read more