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Publication Date: 2011
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A Christian SAT Preparation Expert Coaches You into College
Getting ready for college includes performing well on the SAT. The SAT score helps determine acceptance into college and the acquisition of scholarships. In the new expanded edition of the SAT & College Preparation Course for the Christian Student, Dr. James Stobaugh offers the Christian student a unique opportunity to be well prepared for the test. Also, students will focus on the spiritual disciplines of Bible reading, study, Scripture meditation and memorization, and prayer. A former SAT scorer, Stobaugh reports, "the best SAT scores come from students who have serious, disciplined prayer and devotional lives." For this reason, the introduction to each lesson includes Scripture reading and a devotional journaling exercise.
Critical thinking and essay writing are major themes within the SAT. Stobaugh coaches the Christian student who might otherwise passionately respond to a leading essay question without hitting the marks that the test is measuring.
Dr. James Stobaugh was a Merrill Fellow at Harvard and holds degrees from Vanderbilt and Rutgers universities, and Princeton and Gordon-Conwell seminaries. An experienced teacher, he is a recognized leader in homeschooling and has published numerous books for students and teachers. He and his wife Karen have homeschooled their four children since 1985.
Dr. Stobaugh notes that a major factor in scoring higher in the SAT is reducing stress, and the best way to do this is through Bible study and memorization. Even so, he reminds students that scores have nothing to do with their worth in the eyes of God (p. 9). We dont want to confuse doing our best with earning Gods love, which is an important point to make before beginning this course with your teens.
The lessons in the book contain devotions, reading and vocabulary help, math and verbal exercises, and test-taking strategies. The layout is very clean, with each lesson taking one to two pages. There is a nice-sized margin on every page for note taking; some margins include a tip, quote, or short story for inspiration. In one lesson titled, "Dare to Be Daniel," students read about Daniel's capture and subsequent excellence under King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon. After a paragraph devotion, they're asked, "How can you prosper in Babylon without becoming Babylonian?" (p. 54). Students are expected to keep a devotional journal, and would take time to consider their answer. This meets two needs: a spiritual challenge and meditation, as well as practice for essay writing. The lesson continues with vocabulary review, a MindTrap logic puzzle, a critical reading passage and question, and a brief story from D. L. Moody's life explaining character. This coursework could easily take 1 hour per lesson (longer if you count free reading time), and I wouldn't suggest rushing your student through the lesson.
Along with the 150 lessons, the extras in the book are worth the purchase alone: 3-year, 2-year, and 1-year plans for preparing; typical SAT day schedule; active reading tips; vocabulary helps; a book list broken down by grade, with a paragraph explaining each book's importance; sample reading journal (students identify character, setting, theme, worldview, etc.); devotional journal template; sample transcripts; and 50 sample college admission essays. A free SAT essay workbook is also provided online to those who buy the book.
This is an excellent resource that not only prepares students for the SAT, but puts knowledge into proper perspective and importance next to spiritual growth. I recommend the SAT & College Preparation Course for the Christian Student for high schoolers the sooner the better as well as their parents, who can learn alongside. Stacy Oliver, www.ChristianBookPreviews.com
Meg VerityAge: 25-34Gender: female5 Stars Out Of 5Fantastic! A must-read for every student!September 8, 2012Meg VerityAge: 25-34Gender: femaleQuality: 5Value: 5Meets Expectations: 5Is your child hoping to attend college in the near future? Do you want to make sure he is prepared to write his SAT or ACT test? Do you also want to shore up your child's Christian faith before he pursues higher learning? If so, then look no further than James P. Stobaugh's SAT or ACT & College Preparation Course for the Christian Student.
In the SAT or ACT & College Preparation Course for the Christian Student, James P. Stobaugh has written a comprehensive program for mastering the SAT or ACT in the context of developing one's spiritual maturity. Although the books include practice in each of the necessary skills required for mastering the specific test, the focus of each guide is on working hard to grow one's faith with the aim of becoming one of the next generation's godly leaders. As such, the books are as much about one's spiritual journey as they are about getting into college.
Each book is very similar in content, although they do also have their differences. Both include information about their specific test as well as a sample test day schedule, a free download for helping hone essay-writing skills, and instructions on how to use the particular guide. Both also emphasize the importance of actively reading challenging literary works as the best possible preparation for writing the tests. Interestingly, Stobaugh states that he has "found that the best SAT scores come from students who have serious, disciplined prayer and devotional lives." Although this seems paradoxical, this is something I can attest to from personal experience.
Since each book is geared toward a different test, each contains a different amount of lessons: 150 for the SAT and 50 for the ACT. The SAT guide is intended to be used over the course of one, two, or three years. The ACT guide is intended to be used over ten weeks or 50 days, preferably in grade 11. The SAT takes more time to prepare for because it is an aptitude rather than a knowledge-based test.
The lessons in each book are similar in content, although they are laid out differently. Both include daily devotions and scripture passages, with a sample devotional journal to help students focus their time. Lessons also include vocabulary development, a reading journal for studying great literature, test-taking tips, and practice questions on math, grammar, vocabulary, critical thinking and reading. The ACT also includes science questions since science is a component of the ACT test. Attention is paid to essay-writing skills in both volumes. Answers are included for all questions.
The Appendices include vocabulary helps, a book list for each grade, a reading journal sample, and a devotional journal sample. The ACT guide finishes with indexes for Greek and Latin morphemes. The SAT guide includes suggested scriptures for prayer time (presented in the ACT guide as prayer points), test-taking strategies, a list of resources for developing critical thinking, information on the college admission process, an essay on the rise of secular universities, a sample transcript, and 50 sample college admission essays.
I cannot speak highly enough of these guides. Not only do they prepare students for acing their college entrance tests, but they also help students focus on what is really important in life. Students will consider what is true, honest, just, pure, lovely, virtuous, and praiseworthy (Philippians 4:8) while also getting ample practice in the skills needed to succeed on their test. Furthermore, if your student has already mastered the art of essay writing, each volume could easily be used as the spine for credits in Bible, English Literature, and English Composition. I have not used these guides as of yet with my students, but I fully intend to do so before they graduate high school. In fact, I can't wait until we can get started!
These books were provided free, for review purposes, from Master Books. All opinions stated in this review are my own, and I was not required to post a positive review.
leftelaineDublin, TXAge: 55-65Gender: female5 Stars Out Of 5Prepare your student for the SATFebruary 1, 2012leftelaineDublin, TXAge: 55-65Gender: femaleQuality: 5Value: 5Meets Expectations: 5There are two basic ways to prepare for college entrance exams. One way is to study the test and take multiple practice tests while memorizing a vocabulary list. That is the most common way. While this may help some students it can also do more harm than good and even lower test score results in the long run. I know. Our family has tried this method in the past and even with the use of testing software the results were disappointing.
Another, far better way is to actually teach the student the material that is used to make up the test in the first place. Enter the ACT & SAT College Preparation Courses for the Christian Student by James Stobaugh. Both of these books are COMPLETE courses of study that are in a devotional format and literature based. I believe that home school parents will find these courses to be a very valuable help in directing their students toward preparing for the SAT & ACT exams. Let's examine them more closely.
The ACT & College Preparation Course for the Christian Student is a large 332 page soft cover volume that consists of fifty lessons to prepare a student for the test. In the introduction, you will find out exactly what to expect from the ACT test and be able to choose from a ten week plan or 50 day plan to complete the lessons and prepare for the test. Each lesson begins with a scripture and prayer points. There is also a short passage to read and study. The lessons contain vocabulary, math, reading and English components as well as writing and science. There are answer keys in the back of the book and you can download a free essay workbook to use along with the course.
The SAT & College Preparation Course for the Christian Student is a 425 page soft cover book that consists of four different components: A daily devotion, reading and vocabulary exercises, math and verbal exercises and test taking strategies. The introduction answers common questions and has a handy chart to help in plotting the course as a three, two, or one year plan in completing the fifty lessons. The book also includes sample essays and a downloadable workbook to be used along with it. There is great emphasis on critical thinking and essay writing as well as a comprehensive reading list in the back of the book.
I find both of these courses to be wonderful resources and think that they would be beneficial even if your student is not planning to attend college at all. After completing either or both of these books, your student will have a solid background in literature and vocabulary as well as learn essential writing skills that will benefit him throughout life. He will also have spent a great deal of time in scripture reading and prayer which will help greatly in the test preparation process.
One word of cautionâ€”while I recommend these books highly, I must also state that the parent must be aware of the fact that these are very intense and structured courses and may not be a good fit for all students. I only say that because some students do not do as well with a course that requires a lot of writing and might find it difficult to adhere to such a rigorous course of study. The parent and student will have to make that determination together. That being said, I would highly recommend these books for all homeschoolers who intend to make college the next step in their academic careers. They will give a solid foundation in preparing for college level materials and serve the student well.
I received this complimentary copy from New Leaf Press for this review. A positive review was not required and the opinions expressed here are my own.
Alyssa LiljequistAge: Under 184 Stars Out Of 5January 10, 2012Alyssa LiljequistAge: Under 18The title is a mouthful. But it's nice that James P. Stobaugh has taken the time to write a SAT and college prep book for Christians.
On the front cover, it lists three of the benefits students receive from reading it:
~Test-taking insights and strategies
~Timely tips for thriving academically
~50+ sample essays sharpen your skills
My SAT prep books are old so I was excited to get the chance to review a new edition! I think this is a unique resource for students preparing for the SAT. This book is not the same as The Princeton Review or Kaplan books which include sample tests and focus on the "right" way to take/crack the SAT. Academically, those are probably more helpful and to-the-point. This is especially so for someone like me who waited until after highschool to start studying for the SAT. Don't make my mistake. Start studying ASAP! There is a 3-Year Plan (for those starting in 9th grade-recommended), a 2-Year Plan, and a 1-Year Plan. I've been going at my own pace and mixing this book with other SAT prep books.
In the Appendices, there are vocabulary helps, recommended reading lists, a reading journal, a prayer devotional journal, possible target Scriptures, and test-taking strategies. Then there are the fifty sample college admission essays that you can peruse. This book is written from a Christian worldview with an emphasis on the spiritual side of things. It begins each day with a Bible passage and the author's observations (whether he relates it to a personal or historical incident or literature, etc.) I was surprised that the recommended reading lists didn't have more Christian books on them. This book reinforces the importance of reading a lot but since I grew up an avid reader, it didn't apply much to me. I need serious help in math and there are math problems sprinkled throughout the lessons...I've mainly used the book for these. I like that the answers in the back of the book come with an explanation.
In the end, I feel that this book will help some students more than others. It's worth a look!
FayeAge: 18-24Gender: female5 Stars Out Of 5A Very Helpful ResourceNovember 29, 2011FayeAge: 18-24Gender: femaleQuality: 5Value: 4Meets Expectations: 5Designed for the Christian Homeschool student this course is strives to prepare young minds for the SAT test. As I have not taken the SAT yet myself, I a ton of questions, that were answered with this book. Also there are a ton of study and day-of-the-test-ideas, that I found helpful, and informative.
I should tell you though, that this book is not just a book, it's a full course, designed to help prepare one for the test. There are 150 exercises that take about less then ten minutes a day, that review basic Algebra, Geometry, Vocabulary, and Problem Solving Skills. There is an essay practice section that shows examples of the tops scored essays, so you have an idea of what is expected. Also all through the book there were these little side notes, that gave everything from tips on how to take notes properly, and how to take certain parts of the test, to how you should schedule the day of your SAT. There is also a daily devotional, and suggested Bible reading plan! There is just so much in this helpful book that I fear I am not doing it justice! I learned so much about the test and how to take it from this course, though only time will tell if it pays off :D
Not to mention the fact that the appendix is amazing! There are lists of recommended reading, meant to challenge the mind and grow the volcabulary of the student naturally. This course can be started as early as 9th grade.
So far I have enjoyed this course and I find it challenging, yet not overwhelming because of the short lessons. I haven't taken the SAT yet, but as a person who hasn't yet taken the SAT, but is taking this course, I highly recommend this book.
Final Rating: 5 out of 5
I received this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
BlossomBOHAge: 25-34Gender: female4 Stars Out Of 5Good Prep for StartersOctober 18, 2011BlossomBOHAge: 25-34Gender: femaleQuality: 4Value: 4Meets Expectations: 3SAT_. scary word! Well, acronym but scary nonetheless! I did not take the SAT when I was in high school. I did take the PSAT my 10th grade year and it went just fine (I had no idea what it even was!) but for some reason "SAT" was something that I never wanted to do. I also was not anticipating going to college when I was in high school so the SATs really didn't matter to me.
I have kids now and they do plan to go to college. My oldest is just now in 9th grade but she has already been looking into colleges. To me that means SATs are going to be taken! I was sent this book, SAT & College Preparation Courses for the Christian Student from New Leaf Publishing in exchange for an honest review.
The book aspires to:
Help build disciplined study skills
Develop an extensive vocabulary
Encourage in the development of writing skills
Provide practice for essay writing
Enhance critical thinking skills for both verbal and math problems through advanced reading selections
Answer general questions pertaining to the PSAT, SAT, and NMSQT tests
And it includes a free downloadable workbook at the publisher's website. Also in the book are test-taking suggestions, tips for academic success, and over 50 sample essays to help sharpen essay writing skills.
The first 250 or so pages are the lessons. This is followed by the answers and solutions to the lessons. The next 35 pages are the Appendices (Vocabulary Helps, Book List, Reading Journal, Devotional Journal, Target Scriptures, Test-taking Strategies, Critical Thinking Skills). At the end of the book is a sample high school transcript.
I was very surprised when I received the book. I know it says "for Christian students" but it didn't click with me that there would be so many scriptures throughout the book. Every single lesson has a verse and devotion. This is set up to be done either in 3 years, 2 years, or if preferred, 1 year. It is suggested that the senior year be devoted to college admissions.
I really like the reading suggestions in the back of the book. They are separated by grade (freshman/sophomore, junior and senior) but many of the books listed *I've* never read. Some my kids have both already read.
I believe this will be a book that will be a great benefit to both of my children as they prepare for not only the SATs for college but also for critical thinking that will help them in every day life. I received this book from New Leaf Publishing in exchange for an honest review.