SAT: Do Not Guess Answers

The average student who may excel in reading and writing but not math, or who is excellent in math, but not reading must develop a smart strategy for how to take the test on test day. Thinking about how the test is scored and using that information to his or her advantage will improve their score immensely.

The SAT is scored based on a 2400 point scale, with each section making up 800 points of this. In each section, a ¼ of a point is deducted for each wrong answer. In some areas, the penalty for a wrong answer is increased to 1/3 of a point. In short, wrong answers kill scores. There are a few techniques to avoid wrong answers and improve your score.

  1. Read the entire question and all of the possible answers. Many multiple choice questions are worded to trip up students who do not bother to read the whole question. In the math section watch for key words in word problems such as PRODUCT, SUM, or QUOTIENT. These are words telling you to use a certain operation such as addition, multiplication, or division.
  2. Eliminate at least two possible answers. When reading all of the possible answers, you should be able to quickly eliminate two answers that cannot possibly be right. If you are prepared, your instinct is nearly infallible when making this decision. Go with your gut and trust your instinct when eliminating wrong answers.
  3. Leave a question blank if you do not know. Think of each multiple choice question as an opportunity to pick up points. If you know the answer, mark it and collect your points. If you can eliminate two answers, consider the risk: a 50/50 chance of getting the point or losing a quarter of one is usually acceptable. If you cannot eliminate at least two possible answers, leave it blank and do not hurt your score.
  4. Check your answers. Leave yourself time to go back and revisit your answers, especially the questions you left blank. Many mistakes are caught simply by looking at the question a second time.

Remember that the easier questions are at the beginning of each section and the harder ones are at the end. Each question is weighted the same, so collect your points on the easy ones quickly and efficiently to save time for the more difficult questions.

 

About The Author
Ray Narayan is the Founder of 1to1Tutor.Org, which provides online math tutoring for students studying algebra, geometry, calculus, pre-calculus, statistics, trigonometry, arithmetic, reading, science and more. 1to1Tutor.Org has qualified math tutors that use innovative technology to ensure that students fully understand the material and are well-prepared for success.

Best Android Math Apps for Students

The best Android Math apps for students preparing for the SATs are ones that challenge the student and resemble the real test. Math tutors with sample questions that increase in difficulty as they go along will better prepare students for the real thing, and step-by-step instruction and explanations of wrong answers increase student scores.

GASPis a great program not only for preparing for the SATs, but also for general math improvement as well. Students can adjust the settings to work on various skill sets at different difficulties. GASP is not specialized for the SAT. It is more for general math skill.

The Virtual SAT Tutor is an app specifically designed for the SAT. It features advanced math questions of varying difficulty that are modeled after real SAT questions. The sample questions prepare students for the test itself while also building general math skill.

CUE Math Tutor is a great supplemental math app to have because it gives students access to articles written by math teachers on many math topics, including General Algebra and Calculus. While this app is not designed to provide SAT sample questions for a student preparing for the test. This is more for general math knowledge and is a great tool to have when studying for the math section.

Defining Wizard Math Tutor offers many quiz modes that are similar to the questions students will see on the SAT. The app monitors a student’s performance and offers rewards based on that performance. The questions are generated by advanced algorithms that provide virtually infinite test questions to challenge anyone’s math knowledge.

Marvelous Math Tutor teaches the basics of math, including square roots, negative numbers and more. Great for mastering the basics of math in preparation for the more difficult math concepts, The Basic Math Tutor app is similar to the Marvelous Math Tutor in its content.

In short, the best apps for SAT preparation are the Virtual SAT Tutor and the CUE Math Tutor, because they provide the more advanced questions and are more specialized for the SAT itself. The other apps mentioned above will certainly help students with general math knowledge needed for the test, but as far as strategy and knowing what to expect on the SAT, Virtual SAT Tutor and CUE Math Tutor are the best apps around.

 

About the Author
Ray Narayan is the Founder of 1to1Tutor.Org, which provides online math tutoring for students studying algebra, geometry, calculus, pre-calculus, statistics, trigonometry, arithmetic, reading, science and more. Working with an online math tutor enables students to get the help they need when it is most convenient to them, and 1to1Tutor.org uses innovative technology to ensure that the learning process is intuitive, comprehensive and fun.

7 Ways We Use Math in Everyday Life

Many students ask the question: “Why do I need to know math outside of class”" Basic math skills are important in life beyond school. What students learn in class may not seem directly applicable to “the real world,” but the skills and thought processes students pick up in math class are extremely useful for a full, productive, smart life.

Here are seven ways people use math they learned in class in every day life:

  1. At work. Knowing basic subtraction, addition, division, and multiplication skills are useful when handling money. Cashiers need to know basic mathematical operations. The higher one rises in employment, the more one typically has to know how to handle money. Without math, money handling is impossible.
  2. Personal finance. After school, everyone is inevitably destined to work for their money. Knowing basic math and how numbers and money works is essential to smartly managing money and keeping ahead of their finances.
  3. Cooking. The basic materials needed for delicious food need to be measured out and sometimes converted into different measurements. Without a basic understanding of math, this is impossible.
  4. Keeping a diary or personal planner. Sometimes we don’t have time to think about how to plan events in our days. Knowing how many minutes in an hour, how many hours in a day, and how long things take is essential to making and keeping appointments and plans.
  5. Gardening. Landscaping or planting a few flowers in the back yard requires planning according to the area of the garden and careful budgeting. Knowing the basic steps in figuring area and budgeting is required.
  6. Sports. Know what the score is and how many need to be scored to take the lead, or put the game on ice. This simple knowledge affects strategy in almost any sport. Why take a three pointer when all you need is two points”
  7. Eating at a restaurant. At some point, everyone must learn how to tip properly. Knowing the basic concepts of percentages, addition, and subtraction are crucial to dining out successfully.

These are only a few examples of how math affects our lives. Advanced math, such as calculus, merely opens our minds to new concepts that force us to use the skills we used before. Even if we don’t use these advanced skills directly in everyday life, the mental pathways they require are crucial in our lives.

About The Author

Ray Narayan is the Founder of 1to1Tutor.org, which provides online math tutoring for students studying algebra, geometry, calculus, pre-calculus, statistics, trigonometry, arithmetic, reading, science and more. Working with an online math tutor enables students to get the help they need when it is most convenient to them, and 1to1Tutor.org uses innovative technology to ensure that the learning process is intuitive, comprehensive and fun.

The Right Study Plan for the Math Section of SAT/PSAT Exam

While it’s true that math skills provide a critical foundation for successful SAT/PSAT exam scores, it’s also true that strategy plays a large role in gaining the extra points you need. Just like with math, there is a logic to the way the tests are organized – and in the steps you should take to maximize your correct answers. While online SAT tutoring is one way to enhance your score, creating a study and test taking plan is essential.

The table below shows how many questions you have to answer correctly to get a particular score:

Desired Score

20-Q Section

18-Q Section

16-Q Section

Total correct

400

8

6

4

18

500

11

9

8

28

550

13

11

10

34

600

14

13

12

39

650

16

14

13

43

700

18

16

14

48

800

20

18

16

54


7 steps to getting the score you want on your SAT/PSAT exam

Before you put these steps into practice, it’s important to understand how the scoring works. The following chart shows exactly how many questions you need to answer correctly in each section to achieve your desired score. Familiarizing yourself with this chart can help you to allocate your test time, especially when it comes to questions which are more challenging for you.

  1. Easy-to-Hard. The SAT test questions are organized from the easiest to the hardest in each section. Knowing this can help you prepare. Just like math problems and concepts build upon one another, elements you use to answer one question might help to trigger your mental process for a problem or two later on.
  2. Multiple Choice. Always look at the answers to the problem before you begin working on it. There is a good chance you can automatically rule one or more out, which gets you closer to your target answer before you’ve even started. For certain problems, you may be able to work backwards from the answers provided.
  3. Plug in Real Numbers. Your online SAT tutor can help you determine when you should plug real numbers into equations for a “quick solve” and when you should use deeper critical thinking and problem solving skills. You don’t want to waste too much time plugging random numbers.
  4. No Wild Guessing! When you are stressed, nervous, tired, and/or your mind is swimming with math problems, it can be tempting to jump on the wild guessing band wagon. This is a recipe for disaster as the odds are against you. Fall back on your online SAT tutoring test strategies and see if you can narrow down the possible answers. This can help to settle your mind and get you to the correct answer.
  5. Make connections. There is a link between what the question is asking and the answers which are provided. Try to make the connections between these two links to facilitate your problem solving processes.
  6. Draw Pictures. When it comes to geometry always draw pictures. While you may be able to visualize certain figures and theorems in your head, the SAT test is not the time to utilize this skill. It’s easy to make mistakes under pressure. Instead, draw pictures, diagrams, lines and measurements so you can physically manipulate the material. This will help to fire your brain cells to achieve the solution.
  7. Check & Return. It is never good to spend too long on a particular problem. If you have reached a stand-off with one of the problems, mark it and come back to it later. Remember how we said the SAT Math sections build from easiest to hardest? You might be able to figure out a harder question along the way, which will trigger a reminder on how to solve the question you skipped.

Signing up for online SAT tutoring is a great first step in achieving the SAT score you want. It will provide the problem solving skills you need to tackle any problem the test throws at you. But the right study plan, using proven SAT math testing strategies, will bump your score to the next level.

 

About the Author
Ray Narayan is the Founder of 1to1Tutor.org, which provides online math tutoring for students studying algebra, geometry, calculus, pre-calculus, statistics, trigonometry, arithmetic, reading, science and more. Working with an online math tutor enables students to get the help they need when it is most convenient to them, and 1to1Tutor.org uses innovative technology to ensure that the learning process is intuitive, comprehensive and fun.

Fun Ways to Learn Calculus

The words calculus and fun don’t usually go together. In fact, they very rarely appear in the same sentence. But believe it or not, there are some fun and unique ways to learn calculus that can improve your grades and study habits.

Watch a Video
Reading and writing calculus problems all day can make you a dull person. Try to take in a calculus lesson visually by watching a video instead. Video lessons help stretch your brain muscles and give you a fresh way to learn about convergence, divergence, geometric series and more. If there’s a topic within calculus you need to learn, chances are there’s a video out there to help. 

Take a Flash Tutorial
There a lot of people invested in making calculus fun and interesting to learn, and some of them have designed flash tutorial online classes that you can take. The sites, often created by teachers who have taught Calculus at either the high school or college levels, are fun, easy to use, and help get across the valuable lessons of calculus in a way that’s easy to digest.

Sing a Song
I’m not kidding! Some intrepid calculus teachers have taken the confusing lessons of calc and put them to song. Listen to the the Quadratic Formula Song for some catchy memorization. The A.P. Calculus Theme Song gives you a good laugh while also helping to get your mind into the calculus zone.

Read a Comic Book
Believe it or not, there is a comic book dedicated to calculus. The Manga Guide to Calculus provides the basics of calculus using real-world examples such as supply and demand, pollution effects and liquid density. This comic is a lot of fun not just for students but also for older people trying to get the hang of calc after years of nothing studying.

 

About the Author
Ray Narayan is the Founder of 1to1Tutor.org, which provides online math tutoring for students studying calculus, pre-calculus, geometry, algebra and more. Working with an online calculus tutor enables students to get the help they need when it is most convenient to them, and 1to1Tutor.org uses innovative technology to ensure that the learning process is intuitive, comprehensive and fun.

10 Tips to Ace Your Next Calculus Exam

It takes more than just studying hard and going to class to pass your calculus exams. While you need to do these things to succeed, there is definitely more than you need to do/know to fully prepare yourself. Don’t take a chance on failing. Before your next calc exam, follow these tips to be on the road to earning a perfect score.

Practice calculus daily. Taking time to do at least one problem a day (aside from your homework) will increase your calculus knowledge and decrease the amount of time you need to study for each test. Think about it this way: 20 minutes/day and 4-5 hours studying for your test vs. 0 minutes/day and a 10 hour cram session the night before. The first option sounds more appealing, right?

Set a homework schedule. Create a study timetable for your classes to ensure that you have the time necessary to study for calculus. Failing to plan is planning to fail after all.

Take your time. Spend a minimum of two hours on each homework assignment. If you understand the concepts, explore real world applications to get a better grasp of the lessons.

Go to your book’s online companion. At least once a week, take 30 minutes to look up your book’s companion website and do practice problems online.

Find Study Buddies. Though you may not think you need it, working with others is a very beneficial learning tool. Explain concepts to your classmates and let them explain them to you. Not only will you learn things you didn’t think you would – you’ll also have a better time studying as well.

Never use pen. Using a pencil while doing math will save you countless time and paper. Enough said!

Work as a group. All too often one person takes the lead in group assignments. Allow each person to take turns explaining concepts to the group so that everyone fully grasps what you’re studying.

Do a pre-test. Take a few of the more challenging problems and do them in a simulated test setting. Give yourself a grade, and continue testing yourself until you are happy with the outcome.

Copy all examples. Copy all examples your teacher gives, as they may be future test questions.

Read the book. Even if your instructor explains everything to you, read the book for further understanding. Remember: your teacher is one of many resources available to you.


About the Author
Ray Narayan is the Founder of 1to1Tutor.org, which provides online math tutoring for students studying calculus, pre-calculus, geometry, algebra and more. Working with an online calculus tutor enables students to get the help they need when it is most convenient to them, and 1to1Tutor.org uses innovative technology to ensure that the learning process is intuitive, comprehensive and fun.

10 Tips to Ace Your Next Geometry Exam

Few words can raise the anxiety level of a student more than that simple four-letter word: TEST. So how can you reduce test anxiety? First, BE PREPARED!

What do all students know from the first day they enter geometry class? Whatever the teacher says, you will be tested on it!

Therefore, to ace your geometry tests, you should:

Start now – You know there will be a test…sometime. Do NOT wait until the last minute.

Take notes – Be certain you can see the display boards and you can hear the instructor. Take thorough notes during class and review your notes the sameday.

Ask questions – If there is something you do not understand, ASK. If you do not feel comfortable asking in class, meet with the instructor after class. Do NOT allow questions to go unanswered because they will pile up, and sooner or later you’ll have a list of unanswered questions going into your exam.

Establish a routine – Set aside a specific time everyday to review notes and do your homework. Routine inspires familiarity; familiarity inspires success.

Create a positive study environment – Study in the same place. Be certain the place is quiet and comfortable so you don’t get distracted.

Form a study group – One of the best ways to reinforce knowledge is to work with other students.

Review corrected homework DAILY – Make sure you understand any mistakes you made.

2 – 3 days before the test 

  • Review all notes, homework assignments, and quizzes.
  • Make a list of questions. Discuss them in your study group, with your instructor, or with an in-person or online geometry tutor.
  • Take a practice test.
    • Create one yourself or with your study group, ask instructor for an old test, or go online.
  • Discuss problems with instructor, tutor and/or study group.

Night before test– Review your notes, practice test, and homework. Get a good night’s sleep.

RELAX! If you prepare well, be confident that you will ace the exam.

 

About the Author
Ray Narayan is the Founder of 1to1Tutor.org, which provides online math tutoring for students studying geometry algebra, calculus, pre-calculus and more. Working with an online geometry tutor enables students to get the help they need when it is most convenient to them, and 1to1Tutor.org uses innovative technology to ensure that the learning process is intuitive, comprehensive and fun.

 

 

5 Most Brilliant Mathematicians of All Time

There have been many incredible mathematic minds throughout history. While it was tough to narrow down the top 5, here is who made our list of the most brilliant.

Srinivasa Ramanujan
Srinivasa is one of the least known of the world’s great mathematicians, with few people knowing his identity at all, much less his accomplishments. With very little traditional training, as a small boy in India he was fascinated by numbers and by what math he knew. Without any knowledge of existing mathematical theory, he independently derived what took hundreds of mathematicians over a century to determine. He made significant contributions to continued fractions, infinite series, number theory and overall mathematical analysis, which laid the foundation to a lot of what we use today.

Euclid of Alexandria
Known as "The Father of Geometry", Euclid deduced a larger series of building ideas that were eventually developed into geometry as we know it. He developed the ideas that determined deductively numerous definitions and understandings of spatial relationships.

Alan Turing
He is perhaps the most important individual in the development of computer science due to his development of the Turing Machine, which essentially functioned as an extremely simple algorithm computer. Turing’s general concepts are still in use today in the way that algorithms are used for programming and data processing.

Archimedes of Syracuse
Archimedes is the most known as a key mathematician of antiquity and one of the most important of all time. He was one of the first to understand the idea and actual value of pi, as well as various formulas for volumes of complex curved three-dimensional shapes known as surface of revolution. In addition to formula and theory, Archimedes was responsible for massive development of practical physics and could even be considered the origin of systematic physics.

Isaac Newton
Known across dozens of scientific fields, Sir Isaac Newton may be the most important scientific mind to have ever lived. At a young age, he developed the body of mathematics known as calculus for his own purposes, and advanced every system of math altogether.


About the Author
Ray Narayan is the Founder of 1to1Tutor.org, which provides online math tutoring for students studying algebra, geometry, calculus, pre-calculus, statistics, trigonometry, arithmetic, reading, science and more. Working with an online math tutor enables students to get the help they need when it is most convenient to them, and 1to1Tutor.org uses innovative technology to ensure that the learning process is intuitive, comprehensive and fun.

K-5 Math Skills Predict Academic Success in Higher Grades

“I’ll never use this in real life!” “How is math going to matter, other than for a grade in school?”

How many times have you heard your kids complain about math before? How many times have you, as an adult, thought the same things? Math is only useful if you’re going to be a math teacher, right?

Not true! You might be surprised to know that not only is math useful in everyday life – elementary math skills are in fact predictors of success in other subjects as students pass through higher grades in school and beyond.

Greg Duncan, a professor who is part of the National Academy of Science (NSA), and his team of researchers have studied the effects of certain skills and deficits of students on achievement in school and later in life. In the School Readiness and Later Achievement study, Duncan and his team uncovered the fact that learning early in a student’s career affects their achievement in middle school, high school and beyond. Even more telling is the importance of K-5 math skills over reading skills, behavior issues and social skills. The study found that when students’ math skills are nurtured and developed at an early stage, those students are more likely to succeed later in their school careers.

Every effort should be made to strengthen students’ math skills at an early age to help ensure their future success in school and in possible careers. Encourage your children and support their success by getting them the math help they need to succeed in life.


About the Author
Ray Narayan is the Founder of 1to1Tutor.org, which provides online math tutoring for students studying algebra, geometry, calculus, pre-calculus, statistics, trigonometry, arithmetic, reading, science and more. Working with an online math tutor enables students to get the help they need when it is most convenient to them, and 1to1Tutor.org uses innovative technology to ensure that the learning process is intuitive, comprehensive and fun.

How to Create a Supportive 504 Plan for K-12 Students

A 504 plan for K-12 students can provide much needed support for students with learning disabilities or ADD/ADHD and allow them to become successful learners at their schools. But not all 504 plans are created equal, and some are more supportive than others. Let’s review some ways to ensure your child’s plan supports your students.

First, your voice as a parent and your child’s voice matters just as much in creating the plan as the teacher’s and counselor’s opinions. You know your child, their strengths and the areas they needs help in the best. Your child also probably has a firm understanding of what could help them be the best student.

Remember that no 504 plan is the same because no child is the same. You do not have to accept a boilerplate plan or limit a plan to the accommodations other children at the school. Ask for what your child needs, such as having tests read aloud, having a note taker or requiring a daily backpack check.

The final 504 plan should list exactly who is responsible for making sure your child receives the accommodations in the plan. A 504 plan is a civil right and individual teachers can be held responsible for failing to provide the accommodations. The buck has to stop with someone and your plan should be specific on who that person is.

Finally, your child’s 504 plan should undergo an annual review. Scheduling the review at the start of the school year will allow you to review how successful the accommodations were for previous year, make changes for the year ahead and identify those responsible for following through on the plan.

A 504 can make a significant difference for students in schools. Make sure your child’s plan paves the way to success.


About the Author
Ray Narayan is the Founder of 1to1Tutor.org, which provides online math tutoring for students studying algebra, geometry, calculus, pre-calculus, statistics, trigonometry, arithmetic, reading, science and more. 1to1Tutor.org has qualified math tutors that use innovative technology to ensure that students fully understand the material and are well-prepared for success.