Write an essay where you tell us what test preparation practices work best for you and why.

Test preparation can be a tricky thing for a high school student. Let’s face it. No teenager wants to think about tests. However, being a senior in high school has shown me that test preparation is going to be a part of my life for a long time especially since I want to go to college.

My favorite teacher, Mrs. Bowles, has given me some awesome tips for preparing for tests. First, she helped me out by giving me some SAT practice flashcards that have definitions, language questions, and math problems. The cool thing about these cards is that they provide an explanation of the correct answer. I prepared for the SAT by studying at least one card each night before bed.

The other tips Mrs. Bowles gave me included getting a good night’s rest and making sure not to take the test on an empty stomach. That being said, some of the tips Mrs. Bowles gave seemed very unconventional. For example, Mrs. Bowles suggested that I start meditating. I experience a lot of test anxiety. In the past, I have second-guessed my answers. On timed tests, I always ran out of time, and on untimed tests, it always seemed like I was the last one to finish. One time, the teacher had to bring my lunch to the testing room from the cafeteria because I was still testing. All my friends made fun of me. So, when Mrs. Bowles suggested meditating for test-taking anxiety, I was willing to give it a try. In the weeks before an important test, I meditate for about 15 minutes a day. Per Mrs. Bowles’s instructions, I just sit or lie quietly and focus on my breathing. I imagine what it would feel like to have passed the test. I assume the feeling of having passed the test, and I focus on that feeling during my meditation. Sometimes, I can hold the feeling for most of the entire meditation. Other times, I can only hold on to it for a few minutes. No matter how long I can hold on to that feeling, I know it works. My anxiety at test time has decreased to where it is almost non-existent.

Natasha from West Virginia
High School Senior
Greenbrier West High School