High School 2 College

March 7, 2009

Suggestions for Taking the March 2009 SAT

Filed under: Uncategorized — highschool2college @ 4:00 am
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The next SAT is in one week.  My best guess is that the critical reading section should be easier than it was on the January test. 

Here’s my best advice for how to maximize your score on the test with only one week to go:

1.  Read the plot summaries of MacBeth and To Kill a Mockingbird on Sparknotes.  Read the plot summaries of another book or two that you liked or remember well.  Other books that are easy to use on the SAT essay are Lord of the Flies, Huck Finn, and Of Mice and Men.  If you refresh your memory about the characters, author, and plot, you’re more likely to use a book successfully on the essay.

2.  Go through the blue SAT book and find words you don’t know.  The SAT people tend to reuse words, so if it shows up once, it will most likely appear again.  Be sure to know words like anachronism, aesthetic, pragmatic, callous, partisan, and adroit.  Don’t forget phrases like righteous indignation, mutually exclusive, and a pointed discussion.  Write down at least 20 words on paper or index cards so you can bring them to the test to study just before they make you clear your desk.

3.  Get snacks.  You should bring with you to the test something to eat and something to drink.  I recommend a snack that is not too salty because if you get thirsty, you won’t be able to concentrate — or you will drink too much and need the bathroom during the test (not good!).  You should bring something chewy like tootsie rolls, since several studies suggest you will remember better if you’re chewing while you take the test.  The sugar and caffeine in chocolate will help you stay alert during the test.  They fit in your pocket and you can pop a tootsie roll between sections.  You should also have a bigger snack for the long break.  A granola bar or power bar works great.  Don’t forget to bring iced tea.  Studies show tea helps you concentrate also, so bring tea with caffeine and sugar — nothing diet!

During the week, I’ll post tips for test day.

Wendy Segal


  1. Thanks for the last minute short list to help the kids feel ready. Whether or not they are prepared, somehow having these little “tips” is an excellent focus to carry in with them!


    Comment by Anita Sgueglia — March 11, 2009 @ 1:52 am | Reply

    • I always felt it was just as important to feel “in control” as to be actually in control, and having a list of things to bring and things to do helps with that. Best of luck to Tomie.


      Comment by highschool2college — March 11, 2009 @ 4:42 am | Reply

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