Posted on

6 Resources to help homeschoolers prepare for the SAT

Resources for SAT

This is a guest post from Stacey Howe-Lott, M.Ed. Stacey has been helping kids get stellar SAT scores since 2009. She doles out free advice for parents and students over at Stellar Scores.

Helping your child prep for the SAT can be an overwhelming experience for everyone involved. And it doesn’t help that there are tons of books on the market all claiming to help. Most of them contain questions that *look* like SAT questions, but they miss the mark by being too simple or too complex, testing the wrong thing, or adding the wrong kind of extraneous info.

I’ve been a SAT tutor since 2009, read all the books are the market, and these are the only ones I use with my students. These books, written by long-time SAT tutors with deep subject matter expertise, deep test expertise,  and an exquisite understanding of what kids struggle with, will help you focus on the right things and assist your child in reaching his or her best score.


The only real source of actual SATs. You can buy the book from Amazon for about $17. It has 4 tests in it. Or you can download (for free) and print out 6 tests from the College Board’s (CB) website (which includes those 4 tests in the book plus 2 more.) Tests 5 and 6 were given last year so those are the most-like-the-real-thing. I have my kids practice on Test 1-4 and we save 5 and 6 for our final run-throughs closer to the actual test date. And there are full answer explanations for every question. Yay!

2. The Khan Academy
They’ve partnered with the College Board and have a lot of good study material and additional practice questions. It’s not perfect – they tend to be nerd-heavy on the explanations – giving the “official” way, rather than an easier way to learn it. And they don’t teach any test taking strategies (like backsolving).  But – there’s lots of good information for brushing up on concepts you haven’t seen in a while.

MATH
OMG – my absolute most favorite SAT math book ever! There’s a lot more Algebra 2 on this new SAT – and I had to learn all sort of stuff I had forgotten –  long division with variables? the quadratic formula? Phil has spent 30 years teaching high school math and it shows – he explains math in a way that the non-math among us can understand. (and that kids can turn into high scores) Love love love this book!

This is another favorite. This is geared for kids already scoring in the 600s. It’s HARD. It makes the SAT look easy in comparison.

Kids love this book because instead of boring “find the angle” questions, Mike’s questions are things like calculating the ratio of donuts left after a zombie attack. Even though it’s quite entertaining to work through, the concepts he’s reinforcing are exactly what and how they are tested on the real test (minus the zombies)

READING

This book isn’t easy to wade through – it’s dense in the best way. Kids need to be scoring in the 600s if they want to tackle it on their own. (Kids with lower scores can work through it with help).

Erica shows you exactly what’s tested and teaches you the relevant skill. This is the only book that I’ve found that actually breaks apart the skill set and methodically teaches each part.

WRITING

Homeschoolers have a huge leg up with all the grammar that’s on the new SAT so you might not need this resource. But if you do, Erica breaks down each grammar point, and teaches what it is, how to recognize it and gives many examples and practice exercises.

She’s also got a companion workbook with 8 practice writing tests.

These resources have helped hundreds of my students reach their SAT goals. I think they’ll be able to help you and your child reach his or her goals as well.

Disclaimer: Some of the links in this post are affiliate links. That means we get a small portion of the sale, but you don’t pay anything more. And we never suggest any product we don’t believe in!