Customer Review

35 of 44 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A fearless mom conquers the SAT, January 31, 2014
This review is from: The Perfect Score Project: Uncovering the Secrets of the SAT (Hardcover)
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Debbie Stier took the dreaded SAT as an adult. Not once, not twice -- but seven times! Debbie's teens were hurtling toward their date with this fearsome test when she embarked on a quest to uncover the most effective ways to study for it. What better way than to be your own guinea pig!

Debbie's enthusiasm will have you rooting for her and her kids all the way. She's a cheerful test taker and a creative student. At one point, she makes her kitchen into a "wall sheet" of SAT scribbles, actually writing in a rainbow of brightly colored markers on her cabinet doors. One of her chapters is titled, "An Absolutely Fabulous Month of Math." I'd never be able to put the words "fabulous" and "math" together!

The author makes a great guide for those of us in her shoes. She dives into the SAT test prep industry, sampling everything from homemade flash cards to an elite (and expensive) tutor. She tells us which books and methods to ditch, and which to sink our money into. I used an entire pad of sticky notes marking pages with advice I intend to follow!

How does all of Debbie's hard work pay off? Read the book to find out. Regardless of the actual outcome, Debbie was delighted to discover that studying together with her children, her son Ethan in particular, brought them closer together as a family. "In the end, what the project brought to my life was... happy bonding with my children," she says. (Although, lest you think her endeavor was continually blessed with big, yellow smiley faces, she admits her children weren't always as enthused as she was.)

Having just read Malcolm Gladwell's David and Goliath, I would love to hear a conversation between these two authors about how far to push academic success on our kids. In one essay, Gladwell demonstrates how pushing our kids to get into the top universities can actually detract from their success -- the stress of keeping up can deplete a student's love of his or her chosen field. Would acing the SAT land a student a spot in a college that he or she isn't suited for over the long haul? Or will the study skills learned carry over into a student's college years? Whatever the answer, I'm pulling for Debbie Stier and her kids!
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Showing 1-5 of 5 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Jan 31, 2014 6:41:21 AM PST
Debbie Stier says:
Now I want to read David and Goliath. That's his only book I haven't read!

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 31, 2014 6:46:58 AM PST
You'll enjoy it! That is, if your kids aren't taking organic chemistry courses at Yale...

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 31, 2014 11:23:54 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Jan 31, 2014 11:26:22 AM PST
Debbie Stier says:
haha. They are most definitely not taking organic chemistry at Yale.

Book is on order ... and it'll go to the big pile of new books sitting right next to me, waiting to be read.

Currently reading E.D. Hirsch's books.

Just finished Cultural Literacy. Then, immediately started The Knowledge Deficit.

After that, Hands Free Mama is up.

After that: David and Goliath.

Thanks for the tip!

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 4, 2014 6:13:52 AM PST
You've got some good reading there!

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 4, 2014 7:36:48 AM PST
Debbie Stier says:
Can't wait!!
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Review Details

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Reviewer

N. B. Kennedy
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)    (VINE VOICE)   

Location: Hopewell, NJ USA

Top Reviewer Ranking: 413