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Blossom'sGirl

PSAT - next week

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My son took the official practice test yesterday morning and did well.  Then yesterday afternoon he came down with a headache and sore throat, and he has been in bed ever since.  Not good timing at all, hopefully he feels better tomorrow. He is in 11th grade and this is his only shot.

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Thank you so much!!  That is a huge relief.  Wish I'd asked earlier! My boys will go with the TI-30. 

 

From the official student guide (p 32):

"On the Math Test--Calculator portion, all scientific calculators are permitted. A four-function calculator is acceptable but not recommended.

The following graphing calculators are permitted:"

(listing)

The TI-30 is fine :) I don't know if dd will take that or the TI-84 she's been using for calculus.

 

 

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My ds is in 10th grade and this is his 2nd practice. He has had no prep either time but will probably do some before 11th...yes he goes to the local HS and he has to be there at 7:30 too...he isnt too happy either....good reminder of the advantages of homeschool! Thanks for the thread had a memory lapse about the change!

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My son took the official practice test yesterday morning and did well.  Then yesterday afternoon he came down with a headache and sore throat, and he has been in bed ever since.  Not good timing at all, hopefully he feels better tomorrow. He is in 11th grade and this is his only shot.

 

Do you mean for the national merit scholarship?  Not necessarily.  Take a look at the supervisor's manual that's been linked here a few times.  Somewhere in there I saw that there's some other method for entering the scholarship contest, if you contact them by a certain date. 

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My son took the official practice test yesterday morning and did well.  Then yesterday afternoon he came down with a headache and sore throat, and he has been in bed ever since.  Not good timing at all, hopefully he feels better tomorrow. He is in 11th grade and this is his only shot.

 

Sending good thoughts for your son's good health.

 

And wishing all the test takers success tomorrow!

 

Regards,

Kareni

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Do you mean for the national merit scholarship?  Not necessarily.  Take a look at the supervisor's manual that's been linked here a few times.  Somewhere in there I saw that there's some other method for entering the scholarship contest, if you contact them by a certain date. 

 

Thanks, I checked and it says to mail or fax a letter to them if a student misses due to illness. Does anyone have an experience with this - what are the alternate means of entry? I'm not sure what to do... I could also look for a school giving it on the 28th, but not sure if I could register him this late. I guess I will see how he feels in the morning.

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I believe they use the scores from an SAT instead. I don't think will use scores from an SAT already taken--they require the student to take an SAT on the date they specify.

 

Just to make sure it's clear, the student can't take the PSAT and then decide to use an SAT instead--they have to miss taking the PSAT entirely.

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Well we just decided he shouldn't go, he's running a fever of 101, so that pretty much decides it.  I did find 3 semi-local schools offering the exam on the 28th, so I will call around tomorrow and try to register him, and if that doesn't work he can do the alternate method.  Thanks for helping me figure this out, and good luck to all the students taking the test tomorrow!

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Well we just decided he shouldn't go, he's running a fever of 101, so that pretty much decides it.  I did find 3 semi-local schools offering the exam on the 28th, so I will call around tomorrow and try to register him, and if that doesn't work he can do the alternate method.  Thanks for helping me figure this out, and good luck to all the students taking the test tomorrow!

 

Sorry that your ds is sick.  (My ds is taking the test tomorrow and probably wishes he has a fever.)  Hope your son is feeling better and does well on the test next week or in the spring.

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Well we just decided he shouldn't go, he's running a fever of 101, so that pretty much decides it.  I did find 3 semi-local schools offering the exam on the 28th, so I will call around tomorrow and try to register him, and if that doesn't work he can do the alternate method.  Thanks for helping me figure this out, and good luck to all the students taking the test tomorrow!

 

You definitely made the right decision. Not only would he be infecting others, but with a fever like that it is impossible to concentrate on a test. I hope you find another spot for him to take it.

 

I dropped ds off this morning at 7:10. The test should be well underway by now, so I hope he found the right place to go. He left his phone at home as recommended, so he's just going to walk home when he's done. I guess I'll see him around 11?

 

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Dropped mine off at 7:30, it is hard to see so many police cars, security, etc.  Can't help but stress about him being at a public school with so much violence lately....having chest pains this morning!  :-(   I know you have to let them go and have faith, but it sure is hard these days!  Praying hard for all of the kids today that they can concentrate and for their safety! 

 

I believe it is a little longer test almost 3 hrs. and with breaks they might not be done until 11:30. 

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Mine had to be there by 7:15, it was about 7:05 when I dropped him off. Crazy to see so many teens, I'm used to groups with more of an age span. Not to mention I'm not used to having to wake up my littles...they always sleep until they naturally wake up. I had to bribe them with donuts, lol. 

 

Oh, and the teen went to bed early, at 9pm. Which would be great, but then he got up at 4am! I thought he was doing it to get his schoolwork done that he didn't do yesterday. Nope, he just wanted to watch TV and have time to relax before the test. But 4am?

 

Not to mention, he never did turn in his work from yesterday. Grr. I didn't give him grief because I didn't want to argue before he took the PSAT. He probably knew that, lol. 

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They're starting late here because school starts late on Wednesdays so they haven't started yet. DS left at 8 am, but I think he said the test is starting at 8:40.

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They're starting late here because school starts late on Wednesdays so they haven't started yet. DS left at 8 am, but I think he said the test is starting at 8:40.

 

They get out early on Wednesdays here. Starting late would be so much better!

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Anyone have any idea how critical a calculator will be on the calculator-allowed math section?  Is it critical for doing certain problems? Or is it mostly to save time?

 

I haven't encouraged my oldest to use calculators. They've used & are familiar enough with the relatively uncomplicated TI-30Xa. However, that one is not on the list of PSAT-approved calculators.  Last year, I bought them fancy TI Inspire calculators (which are approved) for a class, but they ended up not using them at all. The TI Inspires are so complicated that they might be more of an obstacle than a help at this point.

 

Do you think they could use the simpler TI-30's or are the test sites absolute sticklers about only calculators from the approved list?

I did not see any questions where you really needed a graphing calculator.  A regular calculator will save time - especially for "calculator kids" like my son.

 

They really only disapprove certain calculators. The fact that they allow CAS enabled calculators kind of strikes me as odd.

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We had a few glitches this morning at the private school where dd is taking the test. They didn't have her name on the list even though I had received the confirmation email and my check had been cashed. They said it was fine for her to take it anyway because they had enough copies. Then they assigned her to the room for the  PSAT 8/9 because she is in 9th grade. But I had registered her for the the regular PSAT. So then they let her go to the room with the 11th graders who were taking the full PSAT. They were very nice and gracious and I was glad they let her go ahead and take it. I hope dd wasn't too rattled by the glitches!

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I remembered to give dd a watch this year :D

 

We actually went and purchased a watch for it yesterday. :) The only one in the house with a functioning watch is my husband. I typically check time on my cell phone.

 

Erica in OR

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We actually went and purchased a watch for it yesterday. :) The only one in the house with a functioning watch is my husband. I typically check time on my cell phone.

 

Erica in OR

I assume that the proctor calls out a few time remainings.  DS doesn't like watches.

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I assume that the proctor calls out a few time remainings. DS doesn't like watches.

D likes to pace herself (she learned that taking AMCs). She puts the watch on the desk or table in front of her.

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We actually went and purchased a watch for it yesterday. :) The only one in the house with a functioning watch is my husband. I typically check time on my cell phone.

 

Erica in OR

 

I warn my students to not go buy a watch the day before. I often find that watches come with pre-set alarms that will go off at inappropriate times and that the new owner doesn't know how to turn off. It does not go over well in testing centers.

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I assume that the proctor calls out a few time remainings.  DS doesn't like watches.

 

The test administrator guide we saw online says they give them two time remainings, one mid-way through and one with five minutes remaining. My DD was interested in having the option to know more often, without having to depend on whatever clock was (or wasn't) in the room.

 

Erica in OR 

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I warn my students to not go buy a watch the day before. I often find that watches come with pre-set alarms that will go off at inappropriate times and that the new owner doesn't know how to turn off. It does not go over well in testing centers.

 

It's a fashion watch from Kmart. No alarm at all, so should be okay. :)

 

Erica in OR

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Dropped mine off at 7:30, it is hard to see so many police cars, security, etc. Can't help but stress about him being at a public school with so much violence lately....having chest pains this morning! :-( I know you have to let them go and have faith, but it sure is hard these days! Praying hard for all of the kids today that they can concentrate and for their safety!

 

I believe it is a little longer test almost 3 hrs. and with breaks they might not be done until 11:30.

Poor you! That's awful. Sending warm wishes your way.

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It's a fashion watch from Kmart. No alarm at all, so should be okay. :)

 

Erica in OR

 

Ahhh .... we have bought a couple of cheap digital watches at Walmart. Both had the annoying alarms preset. 

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I just got a text from a parent of a student I have tutored in math. She says her daughter just got home from taking the PSAT and that the teacher in the testing classroom told them it was the "Common Core" version of the PSAT. I have never heard it referenced that way before.

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I just got a text from a parent of a student I have tutored in math. She says her daughter just got home from taking the PSAT and that the teacher in the testing classroom told them it was the "Common Core" version of the PSAT. I have never heard it referenced that way before.

:rolleyes:

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I just got a text from a parent of a student I have tutored in math. She says her daughter just got home from taking the PSAT and that the teacher in the testing classroom told them it was the "Common Core" version of the PSAT. I have never heard it referenced that way before.

 

Ick.  However, it's correct that the new PSAT and SAT are supposedly aligned to the Common Core standards per the College Board  http://media.collegeboard.com/digitalServices/pdf/lpsite/common-core-brochure.pdf

 

Recent alignment studies confirm that all of the knowledge and skills measured by ReadiStep, the PSAT/NMSQT and the SAT strongly align to the Common Core State Standards. These assessments can serve as a valuable tool in helping states measure college readiness. To view the full alignment, visit www.collegeboard.org/commoncore.

(except, that link www.collegeboard.org/commoncore doesn't work - "access denied")

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My daughter said the math portion of the test was much harder than before. She is not certain if it is because she is taking Geometry this year and her Algebra skills are rusty or if the actual Algebra is just more difficult. We will see when scores come out in December? 

 

She felt pretty confident about the Language Arts sections. 

 

 

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Well, my ds said that math was harder than last year and format a bit different....he thought he was done and he missed a section...whoops! He has already take Alg1, Alg 2 and Geometry to compare. Anyway, I can understand the common core because he said some sections he wasnt sure on because he hasnt done in years. I am glad he took it for a practice, and even though there were a few glitches in the process it was a needed learning experience! :) Hope everyone else faired well!

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Dd said she thought the reading and writing sections were a little more difficult than the practice test, but the math sections were a little bit easier than the practice test.  This is her first time taking it so she can't compare it to the previous PSAT.

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My boys thought the math sections were harder than on the practice test. They didn't have time for the last four or five problems, so they just bubbled in random answers.

I'm glad this was only practice, but I'd hoped for fairly decent scores to up their confidence. This might be better, though, because they'll be motivated to prep before next year's test or at least try more practice tests w/ a timer so they learn to pace themselves better.

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D thought the questions had tricky wording so that one could easily make a mistake without close reading. She said the two language sections were easy. She was disappointed in the lack of geometry problems, one of her strong points. First words out of her mouth were complaints about percentage problems :lol:

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My daughter said the math was harder than last year. I was disturbed that the school where she took it had five minute breaks, but would only allow one person at a time to go to the restroom. She was the third to get the pass and by the time she got back the next section of the test had already been started! Thankfully next year is the real deal and this is just practice.

 

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My daughter said the math was harder than last year. I was disturbed that the school where she took it had five minute breaks, but would only allow one person at a time to go to the restroom. She was the third to get the pass and by the time she got back the next section of the test had already been started! Thankfully next year is the real deal and this is just practice.

 

What?? That's outrageous!

 

Ds was annoyed because he didn't pace well on the first section (reading, I guess?) and wasn't able to finish the last few questions. The rest seemed to go fine. We went out for lunch afterward. Glad that is over for this year!

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My ds also thought the math was easier than the practice math test.

 

My DD said this too.

 

They didn't give them scratch paper and didn't tell them it was okay to write in the test booklet.  So DD wrote very lightly in the test booklet and then erased it.  I have no idea how she managed to do that and still finish, she has time issues with testing.

 

This is mostly just SAT practice so I didn't discuss it much with her beforehand, but kind of wish I had.

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When do results come out?

 

And are they only delivered via snail mail?

And you only get back results, not the actual test questions & answers, right?

Thanks!

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Here is what the College Board website says:

 

"The College Board will email you an access code to view your online score report about two months after you take the test. Teachers and counselors will see scores about a day before you do and can give you the access code if you didn’t provide an email address when you took the test.

Teachers and counselors will also give you your paper score report."

I thought I remembered hearing that in the past, the student would receive their actual test booklet back. The website doesn't say anything about this. Or maybe I'm remembering incorrectly. Does anyone know if they will receive their test booklets back? 

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My boys thought the math sections were harder than on the practice test. They didn't have time for the last four or five problems, so they just bubbled in random answers.

 

I'm glad this was only practice, but I'd hoped for fairly decent scores to up their confidence. This might be better, though, because they'll be motivated to prep before next year's test or at least try more practice tests w/ a timer so they learn to pace themselves better.

 

If you're going to wildly guess -- you haven't eliminated any wrong answers -- it is statistically better to choose an "answer of the day" and stick with that, rather than jump around. So, on the way to the test, make up your mind that, let's say "B" will be your answer of the day. Any time you have no clue what the answer is, choose B and go on. 

 

From what I'm hearing around here, lots of students, including at the expensive private schools, didn't even take the practice test. So those who did any preparation at all may be slightly ahead of the game. 

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D thought the questions had tricky wording so that one could easily make a mistake without close reading. She said the two language sections were easy. She was disappointed in the lack of geometry problems, one of her strong points. First words out of her mouth were complaints about percentage problems :lol:

 

On the old PSAT / SAT, Geometry was around 25% to 30% of the test. On the new version, there will be at most two Geometry questions. Crazy, huh?

 

But there will be questions about standard deviation, confidence intervals, and other statistical data that I don't think most high school juniors have ever been exposed to. 

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My DD said this too.

 

They didn't give them scratch paper and didn't tell them it was okay to write in the test booklet.  So DD wrote very lightly in the test booklet and then erased it.  I have no idea how she managed to do that and still finish, she has time issues with testing.

 

This is mostly just SAT practice so I didn't discuss it much with her beforehand, but kind of wish I had.

 

The instructions in each of the math sections say this: "You may use any available space in your test booklet for scratch work." Didn't she notice that other students were writing in their test booklets? 

 

This is one reason why I highly recommend that students do some prep work before going to take these tests. You also don't want them taking time to decipher the rules for the grid-in (non-multiple choice) questions in the middle of taking the test. 

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Here is what the College Board website says:

 

"The College Board will email you an access code to view your online score report about two months after you take the test. Teachers and counselors will see scores about a day before you do and can give you the access code if you didn’t provide an email address when you took the test.

Teachers and counselors will also give you your paper score report."

I thought I remembered hearing that in the past, the student would receive their actual test booklet back. The website doesn't say anything about this. Or maybe I'm remembering incorrectly. Does anyone know if they will receive their test booklets back? 

 

It used to be that you got a copy of the test book, but you didn't get your exact copy (the one that you did your scratch work on). But you could see the questions and answer choices, and your score report would show what you answered for each question as well as what the correct answer is. 

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My DS thought the math was easier than the practice test and last year's PSAT.

 

But the school cut a few minutes off of the allotted time for no calculator math so he had to finish quickly??.

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The instructions in each of the math sections say this: "You may use any available space in your test booklet for scratch work." Didn't she notice that other students were writing in their test booklets? 

 

 

 

It would not surprise me in the least that she just didn't see it.  She's like that.  Takes after her Dad... ;)

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I walked my two girls into their testing site at 7:45 am, confirmed some details with the proctor, and left. They were to begin at 8 am. They weren't released until after 12 noon. My kids said that it took almost an hour just for everyone to finish filling out the informational stuff.

 

Both my kids thought today's test was comparable to that in the PSAT booklet. They said there was some tricky wording. When it came to Math, one dd said the "no calculator" section was harder, while the other dd said it was the "calculator" portion that required her to really fly.  Both used a watch but said they can still improve on their pacing for next year's exam. Our proctor said she'd mail us the girls' test booklets after she sends in all answer sheets.

 

The hosting high school had actually moved the test to a nearby church to avoid school-related disruptions in the testing, like end-of-class bells, etc. However, the testers endured the last five minutes of "math with a calculator" with the church's scheduled mid-day bell tower ringing/musical hymn playing.  I heard it while waiting in the parking lot. When I asked my kids about it, they told me they did their best to tune it out.

 

I also learned at pick up that one dd actually took the test, sick. She woke up this morning with a sore throat and congestion, but didn't want to tell me. I had noticed she looked tired at breakfast and was pretty quiet on the ride over to the test site, but I'd chalked it up to her just being in "test mode". I'll be working on my "observant mom" skills for the next go-round. In the meantime, we'll be waiting to see how this "practice"  attempt plays out for both of them.

 

 

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My 9th grader took the test this morning at a local private. Dropped her off at 8, and they didn't get out till 12:20. ???? They only got two 5 minute breaks.

 

Turns out 30 minutes of the morning was wasted because five students at this private school did not know their home address, so the school had to go pull that info for them so they could fill it out. Um, really? 

 

She thought the math was easier than the practice test. Another student thought the math was harder. Maybe there were several different test booklets?

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It would not surprise me in the least that she just didn't see it.  She's like that.  Takes after her Dad... ;)

 

I thought the proctor was supposed to read those directions out loud, but maybe not. 

 

I tutored a student a few years ago who also missed the fact that he could write in the test booklet. He did all of his SAT math without writing down anything other than bubbling in the answers. He scored something like 560 as a sophomore under those conditions. I never heard back what score he got after some tutoring.

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