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Ossining SAT Expert Takes Fear Out of Testing

OSSINING, N.Y. – The SAT and ACT are often referred to as the most important and difficult test of a high school student’s career, but Ossining SAT/ACT expert and tutor Mike Goodman is letting students know there is nothing to fear.

From math questions about discovering the angle of a triangle inscribed within a circle, Goodman said the test is bound to cause students to feel intimidated. With roughly 200 students in the Ossining School District gearing up to take the SAT and ACT tests this spring, Goodman is offering a free crash course at the Ossining Public Library . In the class, students are given a certain number of questions to finish in a set amount of time to simulate what Goodman refers to as “testing sprints.”

In order to prepare himself to teach it, Goodman regularly takes the SAT and recently scored a perfect 1,600 a few months ago.

“It’s a long, difficult and boring process to take this test and I know that,” Goodman said. “So to make sure I know everything they’re going to throw at you, I go through it myself to teach these things that you wouldn’t otherwise know.”

Ensuring students are not surprised is what Goodman says is his most important goal in teaching the course.

“There is nothing like being prepared and practiced. Anything a kid does well, from learning a musical instrument to playing a sport gets easier through practice and this is the same thing,” Goodman said, later estimating that half of all students taking the test go in unprepared.

Suzy Zavarella, coordinator of the library’s teen services, said she became convinced of Goodman’s skill at teaching the SAT when her son Michael needed to take the test in high school.

Zavarella said the program could seem intimidating to students, but in the end it offers “peace of mind you can’t find anywhere else.”

“I’m absolutely sure he helps improve scores but I think it’s really awesome that we have someone who can give our kids the tips they need to get through it,” she said.

Goodman’s course continues at 1 p.m. Sunday with “40 ACT Science Questions in 35 Minutes.” Those interested in attending are asked to register by calling the Ossining Public Library at (914) 941-2416 ext. 336 or by stopping by the library’s teen services room.

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