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Suniti's Advice Corner

Parents: How to support your child through SAT/ACT test-prep

Posted by Sybil St. Hilaire on Wed, Apr 30, 2014

support your child through sat act prepAs the parent of a teen, it can be challenging to find a balance between encouraging your child to study and being perceived as overbearing. The key to navigating this delicate balance is understanding your child as an individual. There is more than one right way to support your child. Thousands of students and their parents have found the following tips helpful in bringing some calm to the sometimes stressful process of preparing for the SAT and ACT.

For guidance on the courses of action and options, schedule a time to get help from us. 

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Create a Plan

Sit down with your child during the summer between Sophomore and Junior year to create a test-taking plan. Decide which tests need to be taken (SAT, ACT, Both, Subject Tests, TOEFL), familiarize yourself with the test dates for each, and tentatively plan out when each test should be attempted. Take school exams, extra-curricular activities and academic course-loads into consideration. Preparation is certainly important, so research and select the method of preparation for each test. Proactive planning and setting expectations together will prevent your child and you from feeling overwhelmed when the school year gets busy.

To download TestRockers recommended plan click here

For international students, download our guide to college in the U.S. right here

Observe and Stick to Gentle Reminders

Ignore any inclination to nag your child to study, instead take a step back. Allow them to set their own study schedules. Be watchful and decide if your child is studying sufficiently. If you find that your child is not studying as much as they should be, gently remind your child to stay focused. Connect their studying to the big picture (their dream university). If you are using a tutor, request progress reports. If using an online program, progress data should be available. For example, TestRocker's SAT/ACT programs send parents bi-weekly progress reports that detail the amount of time spent on the program and progress made. Parents can use such reports to partner with their child in an encouraging manner. 

Be Calm and Don’t Panic

Be a source of calm during this process. Your positive outlook might keep stress from rubbing off on your child. Be a relaxed and listening ear when your child needs to vent. Many parents panic when they see their child’s PSAT scores, because they were expecting better scores. When you panic, so does your child. Instead, guide your child back to the plan you created together over the summer to work towards a better score.

7 Tips to Reduce Test Anxiety

Be Encouraging

As a parent it’s important to constantly express your confidence in your child’s ability to do well on the SAT or ACT. After a particularly tough practice test or study session ensure that you continue to be in your child’s corner.

Prioritize Test-Prep

Schedule family activities so that they will not be a distraction to your child. Parents and the entire family should reschedule key activities to accommodate for any test-prep time. For example, if your child is taking the January SAT test, it might not be the best idea to plan a December vacation, unless the child has access to an online program or a test-prep book and is able to focus on preparing despite distractions.

Do you have any questions about supporting your child through this process? Need help in creating your test-taking plan?

Schedule a time with us to discuss options and courses of action.

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Image Source: Google Images

Tags: For Parents

About Suniti

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Suniti is the creator of TestRocker, an online learning platform that helps you unlock your dream SAT and ACT scores. TestRocker is based on Suniti’s highly successful and proven method of teaching students how to maximize their SAT and ACT scores, a method she has perfected through tutoring thousands of students globally for more than a decade. 

TestRocker is a one of a kind online SAT/ACT program that empowers students to take control of their test preparation. After taking our diagnostic test a customized study plan, individualized to students' strengths/weaknesses, allows them to track progress as they work through the program. Each of the 1,200 SAT & 2000 ACT questions on TestRocker are accompanied by video explanations from Suniti. Parents are able to track their child’s progress through biweekly reports.

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