The Secondary School Admission Test, also known as the SSAT, is required by many independent schools around the world as one part of a student’s admission into the school. There are three versions of the test available: for students in 3rd or 4th grade (Elementary SSAT), students in 5th to 7th grades (Middle School SSAT), and students in 8th to 11th grade (Upper School SSAT).
This test measures a student’s skills, instead of achievement. It is designed in this fashion to figure out mastery of a certain subject, rather than how far they’ve come with the subject. With the SSAT designed in this way, it keeps the test fair across each child’s individual background.
Studying for this test will look different for each student. It is important to use these tips below to help them get well prepared for this test, which is one step in the entire process of applying to your decided school.
Study for The Individual Learner
The best way for your child to retain the material that will be on the test is to allow them to study in the best method that works for them. If your student is an auditory learner, have them read the material out loud, or you read it to them. If they learn best by writing, let them take notes on the topic. If they are a visual learner, give them time to read and look at the material.
Give your child time to learn what will be on the test in the way that matches best for them. Every child learns differently and giving them the chance to discover what is best allows them to better retain the information and perform better on the test. This may also be a new lesson for them for future tests to learn any additional lessons in this way.
Take More Time Where They're Weakest
If your student doesn’t do as well in math, spend more time on the math portion of the test. If they are weaker with reading, focus on vocabulary and reading. Find out where your child may lack and give more attention to that subject.
It may be a benefit to speak with their current teachers in that subject, or even go through their current textbooks again to help them learn items that will likely be on the exam.
Having them relearn previous skills they aren’t as strong in will build their confidence for that portion of the test and they won’t look upon it quite so negatively. Creating confidence where they previously were weak will build their score and will build focus when they reach that part of the test.
Find and Take a Practice Test or Two
Practice tests for the SSAT can likely be found either in a study guide, or through an in-person or online tutor. By giving them these practice exams, your child will get an understanding of the type of material on the test, as well as the time they will have and how best they may need to study. Provide them with more than one test and allow them to see their progress as they continue to learn the material.
It may be a good idea to have them take a practice test when they first start to study. This will show where they need to improve, and may even give them an opportunity to see which subject they may be lacking in, so they know what to focus on studying. Taking several exams will give them the chance to see patterns in the exam questions. Seeing these patterns gives your student the awareness to know when they may get tripped up on a question.
As it gets closer to the exam day, your child will, of course, get nervous and may overstudy or overthink the test and the material. If this is happening, give your student a day to focus on other things, or just the time to relax and step away from studying. This will allow the material to fully sink in, and gives your child a bit of time away to do what they want. It removes the pressure from them to focus on the need to be perfect.
The night before the test, give them a little time to rest and be comfortable. Make sure they’re eating well and staying hydrated and let them get plenty of rest. You want to be sure they are happy and rested before walking into the testing room and the exam begins.
If your student is having a tough time with studying for the test, don’t panic. Mighty B Learning has SSAT tutoring to help your student study and gain confidence for the big exam. We have in-person and online tutors who can help with the entirety of the test material. Let us help your child earn their success and impart the skills they need to succeed.
Extra-curricular activities and community service alongside scholastic achievements have been touted as the gateway into colleges for decades. The track star with the 4.0+ GPA who volunteers at the soup kitchen for the homeless on the weekends would often be used as the poster student for the perfect candidate for college acceptance.
However, the number of students who do something of that nature has grown exponentially. Everyone is trying to find a way to stand out or get ahead of the game. Students often use SAT prep courses and ACT tutors to earn higher test scores to shine among their peers.
However, the way many are getting ahead of the game is through taking AP courses.There are many reasons why students would want to take AP courses during their junior or senior year. Let’s go over a few of the reasons AP courses are a great choice for your student.
3 Ways AP Classes Help Your student Get Ahead
1. Improvement of the Student’s Mindset
AP courses are more involved than standard high school courses. This makes them perfect for students who seem to be continuously bored, or their SAT scores indicate they would flourish in a more challenging academic environment. While parents might think a student in the middle ground GPA wise might not be a candidate for AP courses, the lack of challenge might be why your student isn’t achieving a better grade.
The student will also go into college with the academic tools to complete the courses the way professors expect. University courses often need more independent work like analysis and research. AP courses will give them a solid dose of the college-level curriculum to practice the skills they will use when they reach their chosen university or college.
These courses have been known to give a student more confidence in their abilities when they reach college. By experiencing more difficult standards earlier, they have a more likely chance to succeed in their course of study in college. This also means the student will have a far better chance of completing a four-year program than a student who may not have taken AP courses.
An AP course will also give a student the chance to explore a subject they love! Often, a high school doesn’t have the means to offer a subject the student is interested in learning. Online AP courses provide more choices for a student than a typical high school curriculum and often more entertaining topics for a gifted youngster.
2. Colleges Take Notice
A 4.0 GPA is an outstanding academic achievement for a student, but there are a plethora of students who can boast the same thing to every college they want to attend. Even a surplus of community service hours or being the star of the football team might not make the difference necessary to stand out.
However, if the student takes AP classes, universities will take notice of those transcripts over the students who only take regular classes. These classes will also show the colleges your student is ready for the rigorous work upper-level institutions give students to complete.
3. They Help Save Money
In addition to having a greater chance of being noticed by admissions boards, a university will be more likely to give a student who has AP courses under their belt a scholarship. With limited funds in scholarships for everyone needing or wanting them, colleges will have to whittle down the prospects in many ways. Those who have AP classes will have a higher chance of being short-listed for scholarships they apply to help pay for their education.
AP Courses for the required college credits are much cheaper than college classes since most schools have them for your student for free or with minimal fees. This means they can take the course for college credit and not need to take the class when they reach their university of choice. It also means you will save money on tuition because the student won’t have to be in school for as long.
AP Courses are an Amazing Resource
With all of these positives, there is no question an AP course can do wonders for your student’s academic portfolio. However, determining if AP courses are the right fit for your student may be a hard one to answer confidently. High SAT and ACT scores are a great indicator that your student is ready for a heavier course load, as well as excelling in certain subject matters offered for AP courses. Take these into consideration when planning your student’s school year.
Mighty B Learning has tutoring to help your student study and gain confidence for their upcoming and ongoing courses. We have in-person and online tutors who can help with the entirety of the test material. Let us help your child earn their success and impart the skills they need to succeed.
My name is Bethany, and I am professional tutor backed by over 10 years of teaching and tutoring experience. I have worked for some of the top names in the tutoring industry, and now I am ready to pass my experience on to you.