October 5, 2015

The High School Puzzle

Piecing Together The High School Puzzle

Welcome to The High School Puzzle! After many years of serving homeschooling high school families, this past year I expanded my horizons and joined the online world. This site is designed to provide you with all of the tools to successfully homeschool your high school student.

Look around and you will find lots of information. Things like ways to earn credits, how to keep records, volunteering, starting the college application process, links to scholarships, a connection to Piecing Together the High School Puzzle and for those who want more individualized attention – a link to set up guidance counseling sessions or speaking engagements for your local group.

I am also a teacher for the Master-the-SAT Boot Camps that are designed to help your student improve their SAT scores. Check out that information under the 'Master the SAT' tab.

My goal is to publish new information regularly, bringing in more and more pieces, so bookmark us and check back often, sign up for our emails, put us in your RSS feed, follow us on Twitter, like us on Facebook – you know – all those things. I’m excited to be here!

~to your success!


(Image courtesy of photomyheart at FreeDigitalPhotos.net)

The Latest!

New SAT/PSAT Test Overview

Here’s a wonderful overview of the upcoming changes to the SAT and PSAT.  This information was recently prepared by Jean Burk of College Prep Genius:


  1. The new SAT will be in effect spring of 2016.
  2. The new PSAT will be in effect fall 2015.
  3. The College Board only released a full-length test at the end of June.
  4. The College Board released their new study guide the first of July 2015.
  5. CPG is currently analyzing the new test to finalize question formatting and any new information.
  6. Same strategies will still apply-same logic test.
  7. Current students will receive the new CPG program for FREE




  • Scoring 320-1520 with similar sub-scores as the SAT.
  • It will be 2:45 minutes long.
  • There are 138 questions.
  • Still similar questions as the SAT.
  • Try out this PSAT/NMSQT Practice Test and Answer Key


  • Each section can receive 200-800 (Maximum 1600 for both sections)
  • Cross-scores and sub scores are 10-40 (not added into 1600)
  • These are designed to pinpoint weaknesses
  • Detailed explanations for evaluation


  1. Scoring returns to 1600 with two sections.
  2. Critical Reading and Writing are combined into one section.
  3. The SAT essay is optional.
  4. PSAT is still shorter and no essay.
  5. No penalties for guessing.
  6. Math has less geometry.
  7. Students still get about 45-70 seconds.
  8. Four answer choices instead of five.
  9. Current students can gain an edge by learning strategies now.
  10. 4 long sections instead of 10 shorter ones. (similar to ACT format)
  11. The Equating section is omitted.



  • 2 Long Passages-10 questions each
  • 2 Long Passage with graphs/tables-10-11 questions each
  • 1 Dual Passage Section
  • This section is 65 minutes long.

 Writing & Language-

  • This sections combines the existing 3 Sections of the Writing portion into passages with underlined sections.
  • 3 Passages- 11 questions each
  • 1 Passage with a graph -11 questions
  • The Essay is optional and not factored into the 1600
  • This section is 35 minutes long and scored with the Reading Section.


  • 1 Section-no calculator- 25 minutes (20 Multiple-Choice/5 Student-Response)
  • 1 Section-calculator permitted-55 minutes (38 Multiple-Choice/8 Student-Response)
  •  Less geometry, more algebra and problem solving and data analysis. Some trigonometric skills and linear equations are added.


I hope you have found this information from Jean Burk helpful.

~to your success!


Image courtesy of nongpimmy at FreeDigitalPhotos.net