Summertime SAT Preparation You Can Do at the Beach
Check out this summertime SAT preparation you can do at the beach.
By Stephen Borowski
May 20, 2013
It may be summer, but you know there’s an SAT bubble sheet in your future. Whether it’ll be your second attempt or first encounter with the SAT, summer is a great time to boost your test taking abilities. Here are some simple things you can do this summer that will serve you well on test day.
Whether it’s a book by the pool or a magazine on your lunch break, reading regularly will help in several ways.
Students need to read something every day says William Sullivan, an SAT tutor in Colorado Springs, Colorado. Simply reading a newspaper lets students “see a lot of words in context that will help them when they’re reading on the SAT,” he says.
Reading will also help students with the SAT’s writing component. Students will need evidence to support arguments they make in their essays says Ian Simpson, the owner and president of Integrated Learning, a Los Angeles-based tutoring company. “One way to have a lot of examples is to do a lot of reading. Any good book will have several themes that will be relevant,” he says.
Try the Math
Pick up a copy of The Official SAT Study Guide and try to crack one problem a day, or maybe even a few if you’ve got a long road trip or flight planned.
You can also check out College Board’s online SAT prep center.
The majority of the math on the SAT consists of percentiles, fractions, algebra and geometry. Simpson says that the phrasing often confuses students more than the math concepts.
“Students have to have constant exposure to the style of the test. In my opinion, the test is a language by itself,” Simpson says. The more exposure a student has to the test’s language, the more comfortable they’ll be on test day.
Pack Some Flash Cards
Whether you create your own or buy a deck, flash cards are a convenient way to put your downtime to good use. If you’re stuck waiting for a ride, why not use the time to build your vocabulary or brush up on your math fundamentals?
Good test takers “keep their studying grouped into small chunks so that they’re never overwhelmed, and they’re able to take their time to assimilate all the information,” Sullivan says. Flash cards make the material portable and manageable.
Studying regularly now is more likely to benefit your score than trying to cram for the test. Sullivan says the best test takers are “always doing something but they’re never doing too much.”
There are quick tricks and strategies that can boost a student’s SAT score, but consistently studying some fundamentals will be more beneficial. “You can’t do the SAT on strategies alone,” Simpson says.
Starting early on your test preparation has the added benefit of alleviating stress on test day. If you’ve built a good foundation and taken some sample tests, when the bubble sheet hits your desk you’ll be ready for it.