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Praxis Core One-Month Study Plan

So you want to become a teacher and have to take the Praxis Core exams?  As someone who has devoted his life to education, I think it’s absolutely fabulous that you want to be a teacher.  As for the Praxis, I know that may seem daunting at the moment, but with Magoosh’s help, you will fly through the Praxis Core with no problem.  In this study schedule, I will assume that you are starting from scratch, just starting to learn about the exam.  If you already have some familiarity with the layout of the different Core exams, feel free to skip whatever introductory material you feel would be redundant.

 

Required Resources

1) a subscription to the Magoosh Praxis product; one of the invaluable feature of Magoosh is that on every single page inside the Magoosh product there’s a “Help” tab.  If you press the help tab, you will generate a Help ticket: you can ask your own personal question, and someone at Magoosh will email you back an answer.

2) This blog, the Magoosh Praxis free blog

3) the ETS Official Guide to the Praxis

4) the three ETS pdfs summarizing the three Core tests

a) The Praxis’ Study Companion for the Core Mathematics test

b) The Praxis’ Study Companion for the Core Reading test

c) The Praxis’ Study Companion for the Core Writing test

5) The three online Praxis Core practice tests: you can purchase these here.

 

Recommended Resources

1) The REA Praxis Core book: if you feel you want more practice problems, this would be a good source.

Note: I will assume that you have a full four weeks before you sit for the three Praxis Core tests.  If you have less time, you will have to accelerate this plan, deciding for yourself what things you can skip, and what things you can do faster.

Note: With all the lesson watching, this is a thorough and demanding schedule.  I am assuming that you have a few hours to devote each weekday, and can devote a more extended block of time on at least one weekday day (“Day Six”).  There is a great deal of material to cover so that you are sufficiently prepared for the Core Tests.  If you are busy on weekdays & weeknights, but have more time on the weekends, you might make the schedule more workable for yourself if you push some of the weekday work to the weekend.  If you are working full time or a full-time student, and can’t devote this much time each day, you might consider doing everything in this schedule at half-pace, essentially turning this into a “two-month” study schedule—that is, if you have that much time before you have to take the tests.

Note: before you schedule your test, be sure to skim the end of this schedule.

 

Week One

The first part of this first week is devoted simply to information gathering.  During this week, I want you to get the “lay of the land.”

1) Read the three ETS pdfs listed above (Resources #4); do each question included in the pdf.  This will start to give you a sense of the difficulty of the tests for you.

2) Read carefully these four Magoosh blogs

a) Five Strategies for Studying Praxis Math

b) Introduction to the Praxis Core Reading Test

c) Introduction to the Praxis Core Writing Test

d) Beating Test Stress: practice deep breathing and perhaps some more formal stress-release exercise consistently, so that you are a pro by test day. Believe me: being proficient at stress-management techniques is more valuable than gold for a classroom teacher!!

3) Read the introductory sections of the Praxis Official Guide: pp. 19-30; pp. 55-76; pp. 95-112; pp. 127-137.

That should take a couple days.  During the end of this week, I want you to do some practice questions.

4) Watch Magoosh Lesson Videos

The first 11 Math Lessons

The first 6 Writing Lessons

The first 3 Reading Lessons

Note: be judicious about watching Magoosh lessons.  If the topic is something you know well already, simply skim the lesson; many lessons have a summary at the end that you can check.  Conversely, if a topic is new and/or difficult to you, you may have to watch the video more than once.

5) Do about 30 practice questions in Magoosh: approximately 10 each of Math, Reading, and Writing.

Note: for every Magoosh question you do, if you get the question wrong, read the text explanation and, if the question has a video explanation as well, watch that.  Keep an error log on your questions.  If you don’t understand something, click on “Help” and send a Help ticket to Magoosh asking your question.

Note: Most of the Reading questions come in batches associated with passages.  When you practice, do all the questions associated with a passage in one sitting.  You will know you have exhausted all the questions for a passage when the next question presents a new passage: when you get to that first question with a new passage, you can exit, leaving this new question unanswered for the moment.  Some of the Reading questions are stand alone.  The Revision-in-Context questions on the Writing test are similarly organized around a passage: again, do all the questions associated with a passage when you practice those.  Most of the Writing questions are stand alone, and all of the math questions are stand alone.

Note: When you do Magoosh questions, you get a choice.  If you are feeling challenged by the material, then you can go the Practice page inside Magoosh and choose just the topics that you have covered in lessons and the topics with which you feel comfortable; you will expand this set as you watch more lesson videos.  Conversely, if you are feeling relatively good about this material, then challenge yourself by doing “mixed practice;” forcing yourself to do questions on materials you haven’t mastered yet will actually prime your mind for deeper learning when you come to those topics in the lessons.

6) Do all of the practice questions in the Praxis Official Guide, pp. 30-53; pp. 76-94; pp. 114-125.

 

Some of the question practice may spill over into Day Six.  If you bought the REA Praxis Core book, you can also take time to review what they have to say about each section.   By this end of this first week, you should have a reasonably clear idea of the types of things you will be likely to see on the three Praxis Core tests.

 

Week Two

Now that you have the layout of the test, we will get in the meat of the studying.

During the course of the five weekdays

1) Watch the Magoosh math lessons, through the end of the Integer Property module

2) Watch the Magoosh writing lessons, through the end of the Verb Form module

3) Watch the Magoosh reading lesson, through the end of the Passage Types module

4) Do about 20 Magoosh math questions

5) Do about 20 Magoosh writing questions

6) Do about 20 Magoosh reading questions

 

Week Two, Day Six:

7) Set an hour limit, and in one hour, do the paper-based Math Practice test in the back of the Praxis Official Guide, pp. 187-200.

8) Set another hour limit, and in this hour, do the paper-based Writing Practice test in the back of the Praxis Official Guide, pp. 226-236.

9) Once you have done both tests, review your work.  For any questions you got wrong, read the explanations carefully.  If there is anything you don’t understand, send in a Magoosh Help ticket.
 

Week Three

During the course of the five weekdays

1) Watch the Magoosh math lessons, through the end of the Power and Roots module

2) Watch the Magoosh writing lessons, through the end of the Logic module

3) Watch the Magoosh reading lesson, through the end of the Questions module

4) Do about 30 Magoosh math questions

5) Do about 30 Magoosh writing questions

6) Do about 30 Magoosh reading questions

 

Week Three, Day Six:

7) Set an hour limit, and in one hour, do the paper-based Reading Practice test in the back of the Praxis Official Guide, pp. 151-169.

8) Take the online Praxis Core Writing test that you purchased online.

9) Once you have done both tests, review your work.  For any questions you got wrong, read the explanations carefully.  If there is anything you don’t understand, send in a Magoosh Help ticket.

 

Week Four

During the course of the five weekdays

1) Watch the rest of the Magoosh math lessons

2) Watch the rest of the Magoosh writing lessons

3) Watch the rest of the Magoosh reading lesson

4) Do about 30 Magoosh math questions

5) Do about 30 Magoosh writing questions

6) Do about 30 Magoosh reading questions

 

Week Four, Day Six:

7) Take the online Praxis Core Reading test that you purchased online.

8) Take the online Praxis Core Mathematics test that you purchased online.

9) Once you have done both tests, review your work.  For any questions you got wrong, read the explanations carefully.  If there is anything you don’t understand, send in a Magoosh Help ticket.

 

Approaching test day

If you are at all worried about your prospects of passing one or more of the Praxis Core tests, I would urge you, if possible, to schedule them for three different days.  That way, you can approach each one fresh.

 

In days leading up to the tests:

1) Rewatch any Magoosh video lessons you think you need to see again

2) Once you finish all the practice questions in Magoosh, you can go to the Practice page and practice all the questions you got incorrect the first time.  This will be your chance to see whether you learned from those mistakes.

3) If you have the REA book, you can do more practice from that book.

 

Day before a Praxis Core Test

1) Do no studying.  Treat yourself to a relaxing day.  Exercise.  Enjoy yourself.  Eat a good healthy dinner the night before. Go to bed early, and get a good night’s sleep.

 

Day of the test

1) Eat a healthy breakfast

2) Absolutely no last-minute studying.

3) Do relaxing fun stuff until you have to report to the testing center

4) Make sure you bring everything you need to bring.

5) After the test, take it easy, especially if you have another test the next day.  Repeat the instruction for the “day before the test” for the remainder of the day.

 

Best of luck!

 

By the way, sign up for our 1 Week Free Trial to try out Magoosh Praxis Prep!

2 Responses to Praxis Core One-Month Study Plan

  1. Brian November 12, 2016 at 8:34 AM #

    The Praxis Official Guide is the out-dated book written by ETS right?

    • Magoosh Test Prep Expert
      Magoosh Test Prep Expert November 13, 2016 at 5:34 PM #

      It’s quite dated, yes. But the Praxis OG is still quite valuable, so long as you know which parts of it are still relevant to the current test, and which are not-so-relevant anymore. For a guide to the Guide, check out Mike’s very useful review of the Praxis Official Guide.


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