2018 – Monday, January 8

Practice Makes Progress

Question: How much should I practice for the SAT?

By: Kimberly Wiggins, Assessment Coordinator

Just this week, a student saw this graphic and said, “Are you serious? If I want to go up 100 points, I have to practice for 20 hours?!” And yes, at first that numbers seems jarring, considering how much students have going on these days. But when I pointed out that we have about four months to prep, and that really amounts to a little over 1 hour a week, his response was, “Legit. I can do that.” And when we considered that no sport would ever boast a one-hour practice schedule (they’re usually hours a night, not including games), it seemed even less imposing.

This assessment coming up in April is unique to other things you’ve done in class. Your goals will be different, your strategies should be different, and the timing is different. You have to practice differently to play differently.

Not all practice is created equal - just clicking mindlessly through Shmoop or Khan for an hour a week isn’t probably going to help much. BUT - if you work through Shmoop/Khan/SAT questions, write notes to follow up with teachers about, be intentional and deliberate about developing weaknesses and refining strengths, and pair that with independent, personalized reading, timing, and math strategies, you can make a significant improvement in your score. And now we’re talking beyond SAT prep- these are just great life habits!!

This practice is in addition to homework and class time; you have to practice SAT-like problems. If your goals require a higher increase, practice more. Practice will expose you to the exact types of questions you’ll see (they never change); the exact amount of questions in the same time period (it never changes); and the exact level of complexity posed by the assessment (again - never changes). And - you’ll also be reading while you do it, so reading for the win!

Students

Teachers

Does this raise any questions, comments, or suggestions for other students you may have about this? Post them on Twitter, Facebook, or email sat-group@svvsd.org!