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Best Methods for the STB Test Prep

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There are several effective and creative ways to prepare for the STB Test. Below are some methods that can help your child to build their skills in preparation for the questions that they will see!

  • Practice Visual Memory

On the STB Test, your child will be expected to demonstrate his or her recall for irregular shapes. This can be challenging, as the student is expected to remember exactly what they saw  30 minutes after the initial learning phase. Practice this skill by helping your child to enhance their memory for certain items! This is an opportunity for your child to design his or her own items, such as lists of words, visual shapes, colors or even names of people. Draw a series of irregular shapes that are filled in with different colors. After your child takes some time to memorize what they saw, plan a 30 minute activity. You and your child could go to the grocery store, run an errand, play a game, or watch a favorite television show. Once the 30 minutes is up, have the child try to identify the shapes (from the list), that they believed to have previously seen! As time progresses, their memory should improve.

  • Object Relationships and Perspectives

Although the Perspectives subtest is only reserved for the older students, it is an incredibly important part of the STB! When it comes to preparing for this section, it often helps to interact with a series of different objects. For example, one could take a simple object such as a Legoand examine it from the right and left, as well as from above, below, and behind. Start by rotating the object in a series of different ways, maybe you will start by turning it to the right. Make sure you don’t show your child the rotation, then ask them which way you rotated it. It is best if they identify in what way (i.e. to the right or left) the Lego has been moved. Although this activity may seem simplistic, it will allow them to become more comfortable with the logic behind perspective.

  • Practice folding

During the surface development subtest, the student will see a series of flat shapes such as pieces of paper. They will then see boxes that are created by folding the flat shapes. The student’s objective is to discover which lines on the flats shapes match up with the lines on the box. On the actual exam, the solid lines represent the edges of the shape, while the dashed lines show where they can be folded. Begin by collecting a few flat boxes that have not yet been put together. On the flat box, have your child experiment with marking up dotted lines on the folds of the box, and solid lines on the various edges. The child can play around with how the box opens and closes. It may even help to take a picture of the original unfolded box, and a second picture of what it looks like closed. Once again, being interactive and hands on with visualization may prove to be an effective study method.

Take advantage of the STB sample items on the Johns Hopkins CTY website!

By going to the website, you can find additional practice question! You will be provided with a helpful description of the subtest as well as insight into how to approach the question. Included is an answer key. Have your child practice the questions before looking at what they answered correctly and incorrectly. STB Practice offers a wide selection of practice questions for students who are in 5th through eighth grade! For each question, you and your child will be provided with detailed instructions to each question. You will also be given an answer key to check all answers. Lastly, the site provides you with bonus questions for additional practice. Happy studying!

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