This is where new posts begin. All questions or discussions about any of Heart of Dakota's curriculums start here. If you wish to share a one-time post about your family's experience with our curriculum, you may post under the specific curriculum title (found beneath this "Main Board" heading).
Post Reply
Posts: 717
Joined: Mon Aug 04, 2008 9:21 pm
Location: Cartersville, GA


Post by mrsrandolph » Wed Dec 27, 2017 10:52 am

Your Experiences?

Advise me wise ones! To prep or not to prep? If we prep, how many minutes a day? Do I help prep or have her prep independently?

Take both tests? Take them cold?

Shannon Randolph LOVING HOD & Running 4 Guides & DITHOR
Mommy to 4 Precious Blessings
Cassie (15- World Geography),
Will (14- Rev2Rev,
Ellie (12- Res2Ref), and
Jack (10- CTC)

Posts: 1552
Joined: Tue May 21, 2013 7:10 pm


Post by StephanieU » Wed Dec 27, 2017 2:26 pm

My oldest of only 10, so we have a ways to go. But I think the main thing we will do to prep is to take a free standardized tests over the years. We aren't required to test in our state, but I think taking a standardized test every few years will be good practice for the SAT/ACT.
Mom to 4
DD (13) MtMM (completed LHFHG, Beyond, Bigger, Preparing, CtC, RtR, and Rev2Rev)
DS (11) RtR (completed LHFHG, Beyond, Bigger, Preparing, and CtC plus some of LHTH)
DD (9) Preparing (completed LHTH, LHFHG, Beyond, and Bigger)

Posts: 1611
Joined: Sat Sep 14, 2013 5:08 pm
Location: Cincinnati, OH


Post by Nealewill » Wed Dec 27, 2017 3:43 pm

I think the prep books are very helpful for test taking, especially the strategies. I plan to get a book and have my kids go through the test prep book over the summer between 10th and 11th grade. They will probably do it independently mostly but I will follow up with them regularly to make sure they understand the strategy. I don't think it matters which you take but where I live, the ACT is more popular. But I would look at the colleges you are considering and see if they have a preference.

DD 13 WG
DS 12 R2R
DD 10 R2R

Enjoyed DITHOR, Little Hearts, Beyond, Bigger, Preparing, CTC, R2R, RevtoRev, MtMM

Posts: 717
Joined: Mon Aug 04, 2008 9:21 pm
Location: Cartersville, GA


Post by mrsrandolph » Wed Dec 27, 2017 8:00 pm

ACT has essay correct?
Shannon Randolph LOVING HOD & Running 4 Guides & DITHOR
Mommy to 4 Precious Blessings
Cassie (15- World Geography),
Will (14- Rev2Rev,
Ellie (12- Res2Ref), and
Jack (10- CTC)

Posts: 430
Joined: Sat Apr 11, 2009 9:00 am
Location: GA


Post by 3sweeties » Wed Dec 27, 2017 10:07 pm

My oldest just took the PSAT as a 10th grader in order to practice taking the test in a high pressure situation, when the score didn't really "matter". I'm so glad he did it and had the experience! He scored very well, which I honestly attribute to the amazing education he has gotten through HOD. He practiced all online and it prepared him well. He practiced for about 30 min, 3x or so a week for 2-3 months. Hope that helps you a little!
Jessica~married to my sweetie for 21 years!
[DS17]~U.S. HISTORY 2~2019-20
[DS14]-World Geography~2019-20
[DD12]~ RTR, DITHOR 6-8~2019-20
Enjoyed LHFHG, Beyond, Bigger, Preparing, CTC, RTR, RevtoRev, MTMM, WORLD GEOG, WORLD HIST, US HIST 1~LOVING HOD!

Posts: 1846
Joined: Sun Jan 25, 2009 12:41 pm
Location: OH


Post by LynnH » Thu Dec 28, 2017 5:21 pm

I would definitely prep. The days of going into these tests cold are over. They test the ability to catch tricks in the questions as much as they do knowledge. The ACT and the SAT are very different from each other so do some research online to figure out which one might fit your dc best. Taking the PSAT in 10th is a good way to get some real life practice in for the SAT. You will have to contact a school near you to see if they will let your dc take it at their school. It is given in October.
Mom to:
dd 22 college graduate and employed as an Intervention Specialist
ds 18 US2, Loved Preparing, CTC , RTR , Rev to Rev, MTMM ,WG, WH and US1

Posts: 170
Joined: Mon Feb 20, 2012 7:05 pm


Post by snadig » Mon Jan 01, 2018 4:08 pm

Hi Ladies.

I thought I would pass along our experience. Well we felt very overwhelmed with all this 2 years ago, as our oldest was getting close to graduating. Being on this side of it, as she has just finished her 1st semester at the university we live by, we have a bit of clarity.

Things to consider: test prep, act/sat, your child's personality and school career so far, what college they want to go to, scholarships.

Our oldest- we didn't do any test prep. She did take the psat as junior. She took the Sat the summer after her Junior year. She decide her senior year to take the Act.

Here's our take on the tests: We did not test prep but felt like the psat helped her get a feel of what the sat would be like. She did fine on the psat even not being in upper level math (only finished half way through algebra 1) When she took the Sat she was finishing Algebra 1 and doing Geometry as well but seemed to do fine. She could have scored better if she had finished geometry. She thought this test had longer time in each section than the Act.

She took the Act her senior year and did not do any test prep. She did fine. She felt like she didn't have as much time in each section. She came across some science that she wasn't familiar with and had to guess on some math.

Our oldest is very blessed and hasn't had any trouble learning things in school and reads very fast. I would say most things come very easy to her and she would only score lower because she was bored. She seemed a bit nervous going into the test more because of all the people but once the test began she was fine. She even was interrupted in her ACT with a fire drill. :D

She said the ACT was easier for her but had to work faster.

She wanted to go to college and we are pretty sure the schools she applied to required one of these test. Some have there own test. She did get some scholarship money from her score, something to think about. She also could have gotten more scholarship money if she would have applied sooner and filled out the scholarship form from the school. This scholarship you just need you to apply not based on test scores. So what we have learned here is start early which can be hard. The university she is attending has her fill out the scholarship application starting in Dec and closing in March for the following fall. So look into deadlines.

I have a junior and may have her take the ACT this spring, as we are required to test every other year. For my junior I may have her spend some time preparing for the the test, as things take her a bit longer to understand. She is a great student but learns different than her sister.

I hope some of this helps others. I do think it depends on the child if preparing for the test is helpful or not. I had a friend spend a lot of money preparing her daughter for these test and in the end it didn't make much difference. She scored the same both times. Some kids get test anxiety. I didn't want to put a lot of pressure on them either. I can say this now as I am much more relaxed about it. I was way nervous I had messed them up. The Lord will make their path straight just keep pointing them to HIM!
Stacey in Co

Married 21years to my best friend
my wonderful kids:
19-dd-College student Aug 18
17-dd-US 1 Histroy -Aug 18
13-ds-MTMM - Aug 18

Posts: 965
Joined: Tue Aug 26, 2008 4:49 pm


Post by 8arrows » Tue Jan 16, 2018 9:25 am

We used the real ACT practice book and Chalkdust math ACT/SAT review. I found them a good combo. I watched the videos with the first child, but then I just helped the second one with any problems. I reviewed the Real ACT tests to point out exactly what they were missing. There is often a pattern. Jean Burk also has a program for studying that I have considered for my next child as school is harder for him, and she points out patterns in the test and tips. The test prep really helped (especially with time) and many scholarships consider the ACT/SAT score.
Melissa, wife to Jim for 28 years
3 graduated, 2 using US 2, 8th grade dd using Missions to Marvels
Isaiah 40:11 ...He gently leads those that have young.

Post Reply