The ACT and the SAT are both tests that are used for college admissions and scholarships. All colleges accept both scores. Neither test is preferred for college admissions over the other. Both tests have four sections given in a predetermined order. Both tests contain passage based reading and writing sections. They both test math concepts (although the topics covered and the presentation is different) and students abilities to interpret charts and graphs. They are similar in length. Without the essay, the ACT (2 hours and 55 minutes) is 5 minutes shorter than the SAT (3 hours). With the essay the ACT (3 hours 35 minutes) is 15 minutes shorter than the SAT (3 hours 50 minutes). So what is the difference between the ACT and the SAT?
The SAT gives about 25 % more time per question.
ACT English/ SAT Writing and Language
In these uncertain times the need for time management has never been greater. Three months ago student’s days were largely scheduled for them. They were in school for 8 hours, often had athletic or club commitments, homework, and maybe a part time job. Finding time for dinner or even sleep was a challenge. With the closures of physical schools and the implementation of distance learning due to CoVid-19 students suddenly find themselves more in command of their day. This can be a mixed blessing. Schools are shut down. Most activities have been cancelled. Social commitments are very limited. This means students have more time available, but they have to use it wisely.
If I had a nickel for every student who told me they weren’t good at math…. Wait that sounds like a word problem and is probably making at least some of you anxious. Math Anxiety is real and by all the current jokes and memes on FaceBook, it is alive, well and growing. While humor is a good way to diffuse tension, all of the current discussion of the difficulties of teaching our children math just feed the idea that math is hard.
Math anxiety is an actual physical response to the prospect of having to complete a math task. For some students it causes their heart rate to increase. They may become sweaty or shaky. For all students, math anxiety consumes some of their working memory making it harder for them to do math. It is kind of a chicken or egg proposition. Do students have math anxiety because they aren’t good a math or are students not good at math because they have anxiety. Regardless of which came first. Math anxiety is...
There is a misconception that the study of math is the study of numbers and that other than the variables found in some problems, letters and especially words don’t matter. Little emphasis is given to teaching math vocabulary and the importance of math language. More than 80% of my students cannot tell me the title or describe what they are currently studying in math. When they enter the tutoring room and I ask them what we will be working on today, the VAST majority say, “Section 9.2” or “Chapter 3.” When I ask what those sections are about, they are at a loss to even describe the process. Regardless of the topic being studied, the ability to comprehend the specific vocabulary and describe the concepts and processes using subject relevant vocabulary is fundamental to learning. It impacts a students ability to express themselves clearly. It is fundamental to test performance. If you don’t understand what the question is asking, how can you hope to...
Leveling the Educational Playing Field Goes Way Beyond That
Things are changing so fast these days that it is hard to plan beyond the next hour. Schools have had to implement distance learning programs almost overnight. Whether or not students will be back in the classroom in the fall and what those classrooms will look like is anyone’s guess. These uncertain times have certainly provided an opportunity for new circumstances. One of these is the question, should the SAT and the ACT be eliminated from the admission requirements at some colleges.
There has been a movement toward the elimination of the SAT and the ACT for the last few years. Some colleges took this step well before the CoVid-19 pandemic. The school of thought is that these tests are “wealth biased.” That is more than just the “Varsity Blues” scandal where wealthy parents paid proctors and admissions directors to doctor test scores and other application materials....
How To Create an Effective Home Learning Space
Never before has it been more important to understand how to create an effective home learning space. Remember just a few weeks ago when our students needed an efficient place to do their homework. Well, now ALL of their work is “homework,” so it is more important than ever to provide them with the best possible learning space.
You do not have to spend hours watching HGTV or scanning Pinterest, thousands of dollars at IKEA, or hiring a professional designer to know how to create an effective home learning space. In fact, you don’t even need to have a dedicated room. All you need is the proper atmosphere and attributes, good lighting, and convenient supplies.
Atmosphere and Attributes:
First, when considering how to create an effective home learning space, consider your child. Are they easily distracted by noise or visual stimuli? Are they able to work independently for periods of time or...
No-one knew in January, or even February, that schools would close and ALL students would be learning from home. We didn’t have time to prepare and many of us are struggling. While there isn’t any magic pixie dust, here are the top three things to make home learning more effective.
We are conditioned to behave in certain ways in specific locations. When you walk into a library or church, you speak softly. When you lay down in your bed, you get sleepy or at least relax. The second example is very important. Your child’s bed is not a productive work space.
Single Use: The first thing you can do to make home learning more effective is to designate a work space. If possible provide a small table or desk to be used specifically for school work.
Multi-Use: If that isn’t feasible, create a different atmosphere when working at a multi purpose space. For example, if...
Problem of the Day #9 April 3, 2020
Grade 6: If 4 out of every 25 people have red hair, what percentage of people have red hair?
Grade 7: Mrs. Johnson asks her students where they would like to go on vacation. Out of everyone in the class, 10 want to go to Hawaii, 14 want to go to Italy, 7 want to go to France, 3 want to go to New York and the rest are undecided. If 20% of the students want to go to Hawaii, how many students are in the class?
Grade 8: Saturn in 1.4 x 109 km from the Sun and Venus is 1.1 x 108 km from the Sun. How much further from the Sun is Saturn than Venus?
Algebra: Judy Jetson skateboarded from her house to her friend’s house at an average speed of 16km/h. Then she and her friend took a hovercraft to the mall. The hovercraft traveled at 80km/h. The entire trip took 4 hours and was a total distance of 224 km. How long was Judy riding her skateboard and how long was she and her friend in the hovercraft?
Problem of the Day #8 April 2, 2020
Grade 6: A survey indicated that for every 3 students who use a laptop 5 students use an iPad. If there are 48 students overall, how many use and iPad??
Grade 7: There are 30% more boys than girls enrolled in virtual school right now. If there are 920 students total, how many girls are there?
Grade 8: The sum of 4 consecutive integers is 118. What is the smallest integer?
Algebra: It takes 45 minutes for 3 people to wash 5 cars. How long will it take 9 people to wash 12 cars?
Geometry: A cylinder has a radius of 4 inches and a height of 6 inches. It is filled with water to a height of 5 inches. If we drop a cube with a volume of 50 cubic inches into the cylinder, will the water flow over the edge?
Algebra 2: John and his family are thinking about discontinuing their cable TV service. Currently they pay $80 per month for basic cable and $10 for each premium channel. If they go with streaming...
April Fool’s Day Problem of the Day
Today we are going to take a short break for the typical problem of the day. The first of the April Fool’s Day problems is appropriate for all age groups. The second will test your knowledge of Algebra so is best left to 8th graders and above. I hope you enjoy these brain teaser math tricks.
Write down a three digit number. The first and third digits must differ by more than 1. 735
Reverse the digits to form a second number. 537
Now subtract the smaller number from the larger. 735 - 537 = 198
Now reverse the digits in the answer you got in step three and add it to that number. 198 + 891 = 1089
Multiply the number by 1 million 1089 X 1,000,000 = 1,089,000,000
Subtract 733,361,573 from that number
1,089,000,000 - 733,361,573 = 355,638,427
Under each of the digits in your answer, write the letter which corresponds to it using the...