Who’s afraid of the big bad SAT?

iStock_000021242589SmallNot many students throw a party because they get to take the SAT. The exact opposite tends to be true. Students fear and dread the fangs of SAT math, writing, and reading much like the three little pigs feared the fangs of a big bad wolf. And just like one of those pigs, some students find a way to manage their fears and dominate the test.

The metaphor I am about to embark on, undergirded by a re-imagining of The Three Little Pigs, is campy. I know that for sure. But stick with me. You’ll find a way to conquer your SAT fear and maybe, just maybe, you’ll smile along the way.

Who’s afraid of the big bad SAT
Big bad SAT, big bad SAT?
Who’s afraid of the big bad SAT?
Tra la la la la.

Long ago there were high school students
Little handsome studi-woodents
For the big, bad — very big and very bad SAT
They didn’t think, no time spent.

For a time, all students are oblivious to the SAT. But this time passes quickly as soon as you start high school—sometimes earlier. Everyone starts talking about when they will take it, if they will take it, and what’s a good SAT score. Now that the SAT looms on the horizon, you need to decide what you will do or not do to prepare for the test.

Number one was a free spirit
college hopes built on straw talent
With a hey hey toot
She blew on her flute
And she played around all day.

Number two was fond of sports
college hopes built on free ride tortes
Hey dield-dield
He played on the field
And danced with cheerleaders.

In high school, there is plenty to distract us. Clubs, sports, extracurricular activity extravaganzas—oh my! I encourage you to explore your interests, participate in clubs, and play sports. But don’t forget that college acceptance is not solely built on your extensive hobbies and interests. Learn from the example of our third student.

Number three said, “No, not me!
I’ll build college hopes on grades and the SAT.”
He had no chance to sing and dance
‘Cause work and play don’t mix.

The two little
Do little
high schoolers just winked and laughed.
Ha ha ha!

Sometimes we have to stomach a little ridicule to be prepared. Those who aren’t prepared, don’t know what is coming, and are yet to feel the bite of fear from the SAT. Be the smart one! Make the hard choices and sacrifice some of your Saturdays to prepare for the test. Plan your time around your studies—not around your fun. Let the others laugh.

We’ll see who is dancing when test day arrives, when the new SAT surprises everyone, and they have to take the test a second time. Not you! You’ll be ready for the new test questions and timing.

Came the day when fate did frown
And the SAT blew into town.
With a gruff “puff-puff” it puffed just enough
And the free spirit fell right down.

One and two were scared to death
of the big bad SAT’s math,
“By the hair of your chin-ny-chin,
I’ll blow your college hopes in.”
And the jock fell right down.

The reality of avoidance and procrastination will knock students over. For those who’ve tooted their flute and dielded on the field, sitting for the SAT is disarming. In the middle of the test, fear and apprehension bite hard, derailing any chance of success.

Once these high schoolers have been blown over, they realize that they need to put their head down study. They may even turn to you for help, and you should help them. You have the experience of studying. You know what materials to use. Give them the tips they need to succeed. Who knows, maybe their parents will pay you to tutor them.

No one left but number Three
To head off to college.
When they came to study with a knock
He fast unlocked,
“Come in, grab a book, and study with me!”

 Now they all were studious inside
And the practice and prep hurt SAT’s pride
No more surprises for them
SAT had no savings but a silly meme
For all three were now prepared.

You will find a certain satisfaction from helping your friends and peers. They will thank you for your time and energy. And when they return to take the test a second time, you can stay home or head out into the world. This will be your time to dance, play, and spend your time pursuing extracurricular activities. You conquered the SAT and vanquished fear. Who’s afraid of the big bad SAT? Not you!

Who’s afraid of the big bad SAT
Big bad SAT, big bad SAT?
Who’s afraid of the big bad SAT?
Tra la la la la.

magooshsat-imageThis post was written by Kevin Rocci, resident SAT expert at Magoosh. For more advice on SAT prep, check out Magoosh’sSAT blog.

> For more info about the SAT and test prep, visit NextStepU.com.

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