Archive for the ‘Summer Vacation’ Category

SAT Prep: Your Ideal Timeline

Now that we’re almost to summer, let’s talk a little about test-prep.  Test preparation should start the summer following your sophomore year of high school.  During your junior year, you can prepare during the fall, take your first test in December or January, and re-test in the spring as needed.

Starting SAT preparation later than your sophomore summer is not recommended because it leaves you with less time to study. Of course, you can always choose a later test date, but then, if you need to re-test, you may have to re-test during your senior year. And senior year is busy enough.

All this being said, there is no single “correct” timeline for preparation. Create a schedule that works for you, one that suits your own strengths and studying tendencies. The exact timing of this preparation is up to you, but, just for reference, here are two sample SAT prep timelines, one long and one short:

In addition, consider including a reward system in your preparation plan. Maybe, every night, after 90 minutes of studying you allow yourself one 15-minute snack break. Or you work on a practice test every night from 9 to 11, then reward yourself with The Daily Show. Develop a nightly study ritual–ideally one with some intervals and some incentives–and, most importantly, stick to it every night. Once the routine is set, you will be spending less time deciding what to study and more time doing the actual studying.

And no matter what, always remember: a little bit of studying every day is always better than one frantic week of cramming.


By Katie | Tuesday, April 30th, 2013 | No Comments »

How to Spend Your High School Summers


After 9th grade…

Do something interesting, something that helps you explore a world or a subject or an activity that you love or have always been curious about. Let’s say you’ve always wanted to join an a cappella group but your school doesn’t have one. Well, what would it take to get one started? How about joining a volunteer organization? Don’t have the option to just volunteer? Improve upon your customer service and time management skills by working a summer job. This is a good time to explore your interests.

After 10th grade…

This is the summer when your SAT/ACT test preparation should start. In addition, secure an internship or a job, go to a camp, or become involved in service. And if the concept of setting foot on your high school campus still gives you chills, exploring what matters to you outside of school is a great way to remain engaged with your number one priority—your own development—and can perhaps even lead to concrete improvements in your school life. Solidify the interests that you’re going to dedicate yourself to over the next few years. For example, if you have been getting into music in your first two years of high-school, turn up the heat and go to a competitive music camp. Love baseball? Consider writing and self-publishing a book on strategies or statistics using a print on-demand service like CreateSpace.

After 11th grade…

In May or June, take the SAT and some SAT subject tests. If relevant, take AP exams as well. Outside of test preparation, deepen your interests during this summer. If you’ve spent past summers volunteering at different organizations, for instance, return to your favorite and consider applying for a leadership position. You need to make sure you’re extending your college narrative through the summer by continuing with a theme that you’ve developed earlier. And no matter how terrifying the prospect, begin writing those college application essays. Senior fall can be chaotic. Get as much done in the summer as you can.


By Katie | Friday, April 26th, 2013 | 1 Comment »
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This work by Veritas Tutors is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 3.0 Unported.