A Timeline for ACT or SAT Prep

February 23rd, 2016

As we move into the spring of 2016, a lot of students and parents start wondering-should I be preparing for standardized tests? Do I take it in my junior year or senior year? Should I use the summer to prepare? At Study Hut, we can help you make sense of the chaos and create a timeline for ACT or SAT Prep.

When are the tests offered?

The tests are offered throughout the fall, winter and spring:

ACT                                                                       SAT 

February 6, 2016                                              March 5, 2016

April 9, 2016                                                     May 7, 2016

June 11, 2016                                                    June 4, 2016

 

September 10, 2016                                        October 1, 2016

October 22, 2016                                             November 5, 2016

December 10, 2016                                         December 3, 2016

                                                                           January 28, 2017

February 11, 2017                                           March 11, 2017

April 8, 2017                                                    May 6, 2017

June 10, 2017                                                   June 3, 2017

 

So what’s the first step in the Timeline for ACT or SAT Prep?

At the Study Hut, the first step in test prep is always to take a free, full length practice test. These are generally offered every other Saturday throughout the year, and take about 4 hours. After the student takes the practice test, we will grade and evaluate the results and then set up a free consultation with the student and their parents to go over the results and our evaluation.

How long should I prep?

From there, test prep is usually a 4-6 month process. Here are three general timelines we recommend. (Green=start test prep, Blue=take the test)

Timeline for ACT or SAT Prep

The key is to put in the time when you have the time.

If you play a sport, it’s best not to try to cram prep in during season (although increasingly, sports are a year round commitment, there is usually a ‘slower’ period in which test prep would fit best). If you carry a heavy workload during the year, summer would be a better time.
At Study Hut, we can help you carve out the perfect prep schedule that fits YOU. Fill out the contact form to the right, or call/email us today to schedule your free practice test to get the ball rolling.

A Year in Review for PV and RB

June 30th, 2015

It has been yet another successful year at the Study Hut in Redondo Beach.  We saw improved grades, great SAT and ACT scores, and admissions to awesome colleges all over the US.  From the schools in Palos Verdes (PVHS and Peninsula), to RUHSD, and all the Torrance schools in between (South and West mostly), all our beloved Hut kiddos have truly set the bar in the South Bay.

For instance, Darrian went from getting D’s in her freshman year, to getting B’s this year after getting routine subject tutoring. Thomas was able to raise his worst subject, Spanish, from an F to a B! We were also ecstatic to see Austin raise all of his grades to A’s and B’s this year with tutoring twice a week after getting straight C’s last year. Austin’s mother has told us that her relationship with Austin has improved dramatically since they no longer have fights over his grades anymore! Connor stunned his mom and brought his tutor to tears of joy when he earned straight A’s both semesters of his junior year after receiving straight C’s during his Freshman and Sophomore years.

Many of our students demonstrated exceptional improvement on their SAT and ACT scores. Connor raised his ACT score from a 20 to a 29 in just three months after coming in for ACT tutoring twice a week. Sophia juggled her hectic life of AP classes, club soccer, and numerous school clubs by coming in once a week for four months for ACT tutoring. Sophia raised her score from a 29 to a 35, which secured her early admission to one of the most prestigious academic institutions in Massachusetts, Wellesley College. Shivani not only scored an outstanding 2300 on her SAT, but used test preparation at Study Hut to ace her SAT 2 tests as well in Math and English.

We could not be more proud of the incredible college acceptances our students earned after getting college guidance with their tutors. Olivia was not only admitted to every college she applied to, but got into her dream school, USC, to pursue studies in Marine Biology. Kelley was accepted to the incredibly competitive music industry program at USC, which only admits thirty students annually. Hayley will be attending one of the most impacted schools in California, San Diego State, which has been her dream school since she was in sixth grade. Eliza and Mollie will both be attending the most impacted college in the country, UCLA, in the fall.This Year's Favorite Books Tutor Appreciation was high this year SAT/ACT/College Success this Year

Succeeding in Summer School

June 11th, 2015

It’s difficult to keep up in summer school classes. Five to six hours a day of the same topic is a long time to concentrate. Not only that, but teachers are trying to cram in an entire year’s worth of material into just a few short weeks.

One strategy to make sure you stay on top of summer school is to make sure that you take amazing notes. Great notes are detailed, organized, and easy to read. Make sure that you are writing legibly. Organize your notes by topic. This way, if you are looking for information on a certain topic you can easily find it. Make sure to take notes on what your teacher is saying, not just the lecture slides. They often go into important, more detailed information than just what is on the slides. You can bet that that same information will be on the test.

Try and stay focused. The hours are long, but the tests are very frequent so you do not have time to slack off. If you miss a concept, make sure to see a tutor before you are tested on it. It is also a good idea to schedule regular tutoring sessions. One-on-one time with a tutor can allow you to explore the material in more depth and assure that you fully understand all of the concepts. There is very little time to play catch up because of the rushed schedule. Turning in all of your homework assignments is crucial. Do not get lazy because the lost points will add up and hurt you.

As long as you stay on your A game, summer school is an amazing way to knock out some classes quickly.

Getting Spanish

January 26th, 2015

Joey started coming in to Study Hut because he was really struggling in his Spanish 3 class. All semester he had not been getting the grades that he wanted on tests and large assignments. He worked hard in class and did all of his homework, but he still did not seem to really understand the material. As much as he practiced it just did not stick.

 

Joey worked on Spanish 3 with his tutor Ana. The concepts became easier and he began to fully grasp the material thanks to the practice he was getting outside of the classroom. They worked on pronunciations, how to write using multiple different tenses, and how to make sure his grammar was perfect. Joey was really worried about his final because so much of the semester had not made sense. He put a lot of effort and work into studying and preparing for it. The final was an oral recitation with a lot of difficult future tense and new vocabulary. He and Ana spent a lot of time making sure that he was pronouncing all of his verbs correctly and that all of his irregulars were conjugated the right way. They also paid close attention to making sure that Joey remembered to follow the accents when he was giving the words emphasis.

Joey ended up getting a 95% on his final. He was incredibly proud of himself, and Ana was proud of him, too!

Keeping Up With Homeschool

January 17th, 2015

Keeping up with homeschool can be difficult. There is no regularly scheduled class that you have to attend every day, your teacher is just a strange, faceless online entity, and the classes are rarely as interactive as ones in a traditional school environment. All these factors, combined with the fact that most students find it very difficult to teach themself new material, make it very easy to fall behind. At first, it can seem like a harmless thing to do. “Oh, I’ll just make up that day tomorrow.” But soon one day behind becomes two, then three, and suddenly you are fifteen class days behind and the end of the semester is just two weeks away. It is important to remain diligent in keeping up with your homeschool classes. There are a few things that you can do to make sure that this happens.

 

Try to have the work completed by the day that is assigned, or the date it is scheduled to be done. If you know that you will not have any time to log in to your online class on a certain day or week, get it done beforehand and be ahead instead of waiting until after and struggling to play catch up. Schedule a regularly recurring appointment with a tutor twice a week if you cannot motivate yourself to keep up in classes, or if the material is challenging to teach to yourself. Our one-on-one tutors will make sure to keep you on track, and make all the material easy to understand.

Finals Cram Sessions

January 8th, 2015

With finals right around the corner, a lot of different high schools are gearing up for their weekend finals cram sessions. Study Hut tutors will be helping out at Palos Verdes High School, Palos Verdes Peninsula High School, and West Torrance High School. The AVID classes are holding the sessions in the Palos Verdes Peninsula School District.

 

There are a lot of different ways that students can maximize their results during tutoring in large groups. First, find other students who are studying the same subject, or better yet are in the same class with the same teacher. Someone may have taken better notes, or have been there on a day when you were absent. Together your group can try and work your way through the more difficult concepts of the semester together. Go through the study guide for the final together. Make sure that the answers make sense to everyone. If you are having trouble with a concept, have a friend explain it to you. They may be able to make it make sense in a way that your teacher could not. Do the same for your friends. Teaching the material to your friends will also help you get a better grasp on the information. If any of you have contradicting answers to one of the questions, make sure you find out what is actually correct either by looking in your book, asking a tutor, or by searching on the internet. Afterward, review the information later in the day or the following day on your own to make sure that it all sank in.

Hour of Code and AP CompSci

December 16th, 2014

The Palos Verdes Peninsula Unified School District participated in the international “Hour of Code” event this month. The program is made to give students a brief introduction to computer science and specifically learning how to code in different computer languages. The field of computer science is growing exponentially and offering more and more jobs for people with skills in coding, programming, and front-end development. Both the staff and students of the Palos Verdes Peninsula Unified School District were invited to attend the event and learn more about code.

 

Computer Science classes are offered at both Palos Verdes Peninsula and Palos Verdes High School. These classes are offered at the AP level. Throughout the class students learn about different algorithms. Students also go through designing a program to fit their objectives, and then subsequently testing and debugging the program that they have designed. After that they learn about the different kinds of data class structures ranging from strings and classes to lists. Then the class will learn about searching and sorting through the code and algorithms, as well as different options that can be performed. The entire class is usually taught in the Java programming language, which is considered to be one of the more difficult programming languages.

 

Sometimes it can be difficult to find information on computer science online, and then it can be very dry and very complex. Luckily, if your student needs one-on-one AP Computer Science tutoring, we offer it at our Study Hut location in the Redondo Beach Rivera.

From a Tutor’s Perspective

September 24th, 2014

Study Hut tutors have the opportunity to work with the Academics Via Individual Determination (AVID) program at different high schools. One of these schools is Peninsula High School in Palos Verdes. During her freshman year, a student named Cindy was among one of the students I got to regularly help last school year. Now as a sophomore, Cindy comes in to Study Hut for tutoring and it seems fair to say that she is both enjoying it and benefitting from it. While waiting for her ride after one of her sessions, Cindy decided to hang around. Since I did not have a student at the time, I invited Cindy to sit at my table until her ride came (more like she invited herself to come sit). We chatted about her AVID class, school functions, friends, and life in general. Although the conversation only lasted about five minutes, it was one of those small events that happened to make my day that much better. It was a great feeling knowing that she was comfortable enough to talk to me like a friend and I was able to provide her with advice as a mentor. On behalf of the Study Hut tutors, we strive to provide an environment that balances serious styles and laid-back styles in order to allow students to succeed inside the classroom and beyond. This is just one example of the bonds that the tutors and students experience at Study Hut – I am sure there have been and will be plenty more.

Summer Tutoring

July 9th, 2014

Imagine if each year you allowed three consecutive months to pass without ever considering diet or exercise; the result would be low energy, an underperforming immune system, and many other undesirable consequences. Just like any other part of the human body, the brain requires regular attention and maintenance to perform to its potential.  Students often struggle to get back into the swing of academics after a long summer break, as their brains have been stagnant for weeks on end.  Here at Study Hut Tutoring, we make sure to keep our students sharp through the summer time, allowing an easier entrance into the new school year and helping them to start strong and maintain that impressive GPA throughout the course of the academic year.

Summer tutoring offers many benefits to students.  For some, summer tutoring serves as a valuable time to assess the strengths and weaknesses of the previous school year, and to clear up and solidify conceptual understanding that they will need to progress to more advanced courses.  For others, summer tutoring serves as an opportunity to learn new material before being exposed to it in the classroom, giving them more confidence and an easier route to an “A”.  And still for others, we help with writing enrichment, summer reading requirements, and preparation for the Fall SAT and ACT.

Of course, we at Study Hut Tutoring also appreciate the value of leisure time.  Our founders, Rob and Sean, along with our tutors have been making the most of this summer by spending plenty of time on and in the ocean, be it to surf, spearfish, or boat across the channel to Catalina Island.  We will be seeing off our managerial staff on an annual leadership trip at the end of July, and look forward to building an even stronger team to help our students through the remainder of the summer and next school year.

If you would like more information regarding our summer tutoring services, or you would like to sign up your son or daughter for summer help to prepare for the upcoming school year, please feel welcome to contact us at info@studyhut.com.  Enjoy your summer!