Most high school kids take the PSAT. Scoring high on it is both an indicator of good SAT performance and an opportunity to earn a National Merit Scholarship. It pays to treat the PSAT seriously. It just so happens, though, that doing well on the math portion of the PSAT may have more to do with having a good foundation in the subject than having advanced, harder-to-obtain skills.
A study performed by the Journal of Neuroscience found a positive link between basic, single-digit math calculation and success on the PSAT. An MRI scan showed that students with high activity in the left area of the brain, which focuses on simple mathematical exercises, had higher PSAT scores. Although the PSAT and SAT are designed to measure advanced high school-level skills and concepts, this study shows that doing well on the PSAT can be as simple as possessing basic math reasoning (and using a little memorization).
Mathnasium offers a Numerical Fluency program which assists students of all ages who don’t have a complete grasp of computation with single-digit numbers. We define fluency as the effortless recall of number facts, for example, counting by 6s, 7s, and 8s, as well being able to effortlessly calculate “7 + 8 + 9.” Mastery of exercises like these ensure that students have the mental math skills that leads to success on the PSAT and beyond.
Mathnasium’s customized lesson plans and individualized attention make sure that dedicated students attain Numerical Fluency, paving the way for success on the PSAT and beyond.
- Larry Martinek