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ACT Math Strategies


ACT Math*

*This is a free excerpt from our Online ACT Test Prep

The Piranha: Tiny Terror of the Amazon

Budding anglers, welcome to our first catch on the epic show River Monsters. The first math subject you must tackle successfully is the piranha-like pre-algebra. We're starting off easy here. Well, not exactly easy, but at least this guy is pretty tiny. That's something, right?

Let's meet...the piranha.

Usually only about as big as your hand, the piranha is by far the smallest river monster. But don't be fooled by its size: bigger isn't always better, and these guys are formidable predators. With their razor sharp teeth and tendency to hunt in massive packs, these tiny titans are definitely fishes you don't want to be swimming with any time soon.

How do I catch one?

Luckily for you, pre-algebra covers only the basics and isn't going to try to devour you bite by bite. However, like the piranha, it can sneak up on you when you least expect it, making hooking it a difficult task.

You've been learning pre-algebra since junior high, so much of it will be second nature to you. Because it serves as a foundation for all the other subjects covered in ACT Math, the best overall strategy is to review any parts of pre-algebra that make you feel a little shaky. Make sure you can evaluate an exponent or find the greatest common factor with your eyes closed. Nothing would be worse than forgetting how to turn a fraction into a decimal halfway through the test. Well, maybe getting your finger chomped by a hungry little piranha. But we have all the tools you need to make sure that will never happen.

Free excerpts from Shmoop's online ACT subject material:

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