Math department plans test prep

Sophomores and juniors study for upcoming ACT


Anika Hanson

Junior Jamie Sorenson studies for the ACT during his study hall. All Park juniors can take the ACT at school Feb. 20.

Emma Leff

According to math teacher Amanda Forsberg, as the ACT date for all juniors at Park quickly approaches, the math department is working to prepare students for the high-stakes test.

“The last couple years when we’ve hit second semester we have done an ACT prep class in our precalculus and advanced algebra classes,” Forsberg said. “We kind of talk about the different strands (of the test). We talk about some test-taking strategies, and kind of how you can mentally go into it.”

Kari Taylor, who teaches advanced algebra and geometry, said the department has previously included practice intermittently throughout the weeks before the February ACT date, but the plan for this year has yet to be set.

“I’m not sure what we will do this year,” Taylor said. “In the past, we have put in some practice problems here and there, and put in some training before the ACT.”

Junior Ava Bishop said because the topics on the ACT do not reflect what she is learning in math this year, some review during class would be useful.

“I take AP Calculus, and there’s not really any calculus questions on the ACT. The questions are from ninth grade or 10th grade and even some are from eighth grade. (It) is really hard to remember math questions from previous years,” Bishop said.

Forsberg said although there is limited time to spend on ACT prep during class, the time students do spend working on practice problems can still be very valuable.

“(The ACT practice we do in class isn’t enough) just because we don’t have time to target the ACT specifically, but I think (the practice we do) definitely helps; the more practice problems you can see, the better off you are,” Forsberg said.

Junior Muna Hussin said she wishes math teachers would spend more time during class throughout the year reviewing ACT topics as it can be beneficial to those preparing for the test.

“(I would like more ACT help in class) because it obviously improves our test scores, but it also makes us a little less anxious about such an important test,” Hussin said. “Also lots of people don’t have time outside of class to devote enough time to study for the ACT, so it would help if teachers set aside more time during classes, especially for juniors.”

Senior Gaidah Azem said although she would have liked more ACT prep during class when she was a junior, she recognizes math teachers have a lot of other content to cover.

“(I wish there was more help), but also I don’t think it is something we should have to burden them with,” Azem said. “But I do think the school should offer more things to help out.”

The next nationwide ACT test will be held Feb. 9, and all juniors will be able to take the test Feb. 20 at Park for no cost, according to the 6425 Newsletter.