It’s the season of standardized testing, and at The Village Tutors our expert team understands how stressful this can be for students…and their families. To help alleviate some stress and provide helpful guidance, we’ve compiled our top tips for test taking and preparation.
Emphasize Time Management
Both the SAT and ACT are timed exams, so diligence with time is essential. One way to practice time management – and strengthen it as a necessary skill – is to have your student become familiar with each section of the test and its allotted time. Once they have this information, encourage them to complete practice work within these timeframes. For example, the English section of the ACT allows 45 minutes for 75 questions. This equates to roughly 36 seconds for each question. With this knowledge, your student can time their test prep to see how long they average per question. If it is longer than 36 seconds, then there is room to improve their speed in order to complete all questions on test day.
Focus on Focusing
It may sound obvious, but we know that there are so many distractions competing for our students’ time! From social media to texting to binge watching a favorite show, there are a lot of activities that can take our students away from studying. So how can we help tune out this noise? Encourage your student to study in an environment that most mirrors the setting they will experience on test day. Make sure the area is quiet and free from distractions, but still includes a clock for time management, so that they can focus on their practice questions and tests.
Practice Testing Strategies
When it comes to test preparation, there are many strategies that can be employed to encourage efficiency and accuracy in answers. Our expert tutors cover such strategies in detail during our test prep sessions, and we customize our sessions based on each student’s unique needs and learning styles. For standardized tests like the SAT and ACT, common testing strategies include working questions out of order, seeking to find the wrong answers first, and tailoring strategies to each specific section of the test.
What if you have a younger student, who isn’t at the standardized testing stage yet? There are still testing strategies to practice, many of which can be encouraged at home. For example, our tutor Alex Laws, who works with younger students on ELA/Reading testing strategies says, “I like to teach my students to be active readers, always. We practice previewing the questions and answer selections before reading, then circling key words and highlighting evidence that supports their answer.” This is excellent advice for younger students.
If you and your student are seeking additional test prep support, reach out to our team for help. We are ready and excited to assist you, and our test prep services never include contracts. We offer test prep support both in-person and online, so your student can connect with a tutor in an environment that is best for them. Contact us today for information and registration details. We look forward to supporting your student and family!