Tips for Homeschool Teens: Taking Tests

As far as I’m concerned, taking tests is a school subject in itself. It requires a certain amount of logic, a certain amount of intuition, and a whole lot of memorization. Not everyone has the same aptitude with filling in the correct boxes and circles. Just like any subject, though, it can be learned and improved on. I’ve picked up a few tricks from taking tests in homeschool so far, and I’m happy to present them here.

Take notes… on paper!

Taking notes during class is useful for more than just studying them later on. The very act of writing down important information helps our brains memorize it more easily. And for some students, taking notes Ye Olde Fashioned way – on paper with a writing device – is even better for memorization than taking them on, say, a laptop.

Computers can also malfunction or lag, and don’t give us the extra speed boost from making our notes in the form garbled, incoherent scribbles. So have your ink and tree entrails at the ready when you’re learning new things in school!

Flashcards: they actually work!

Granted, the kind of learning that memorizing information from a set of flashcards nets you usually only goes as far as the end of a test. After that, all of the information you regurgitated will be swiftly replaced by rumors about Kim Kardashian transplanted from the Internet directly into your brain. But a lot of times, tests are just a measure of how much information you can memorize and retain until a test, and flashcards are a speedy way to do just that.

Don’t feel like you’ve learned something? Ask the teacher!

This is one I learned the hard way. If you go into a test only 40% sure of the information you’re being testing on, you’re not going to ace it. That’s just how it is. Teachers, especially homeschool teachers, have it in their job description to help you learn, and there’s no shame in asking your teacher to go over some confusing information with you. It’s worth both your and their time to bring your C all the way up to an A.

Put these tips into action in your schooling and you’ll be preparing for a test the easy way in no time. More important than homeschool tests, though, are college tests, and if you’re going to get your college degree, these very same pieces of advice apply all the way through the rest of your education. Memorize them just as you’d memorize those flash cards, homeschoolers!

July 6, 2012


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