Preparing for College – Preparing for the PSAT

About this series:  We have begun our two year journey to get Ian into college.  These next two years will focus on researching the best college matches, majors, scholarships and financial aid and anything else that comes to mind. If you have any questions about the posts or materials, please send an email to marian [at] celebrate-family.com.

Juniors will be taking the PSAT (usually) at their schools on October 16 or 19.  The PSAT is important in that ranking high can qualify your student as a National Merit Scholar (and eligible for National Merit Scholarships).

Why else is the PSAT important?  I believe that it gives the student a better idea of what the SAT will be like.  If the student does not do well on the PSAT they have an opportunity to review their test taking strategies. And three, they have an opportunity to determine what is the best way for them to practice/learn strategies for the SAT i.e. in a B&M classroom, online course, or a test prep book.

This weekend, we checked the dates for prep classes at local Bay area libraries.  To do this, we
1) Reviewed the dates in the Teen section of Celebrate-Family.com.
2) Listed the dates for libraries near us in the calendar of our College Prep binder.
3) Chose two dates that would work for us with the understanding that if we missed one, we would definitely attend the other.
4) Checked the library event information and reserved a space (as necessary).
5) Then we listed the dates and information in our various calendars:

  • My datebook
  • Ian’s school day planner
  • House master calendar

Some suggestions on where to find practice materials and test taking assistance.

  • Check your local library under Homework, Teen or High School section.  Most libraries offer links to practice tests, ebooks for  AP, SAT, GED, GRE, GMAT, LSAT, MCAT.  This is offered as a free service.
  • Check the used book sales at your local library for practice test and test strategy books.  Books can be purchased for as little as 25 cents.
  • Check online sites such as Groupon for test taking courses at substantial discounts. For example, Groupon currently is offering a prep course by BenchPrep valued at $149 for $25.

 Other activities this week:

1) Created a record sheet for hours spent Volunteering.
2) Created a record sheet for hours spent at sports & hobbies.
3) Created an email address for use on contact cards and all things related to college.
4) Created a record sheet for online log in and passwords.

Resources:
Listing of College prep activities at local libraries – The Teen page at Celebrate-Family.com.


Originally Posted on: 10/4/2013
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