5 Activities That Can Make Your ACT Prep More Fun

test prep

With the ACT assessments looming in your future, you may find the prospect of ACT prep a daunting one. You understand how important the ACT can be for your college choice—but the prep sounds deadly dull. Try these five activities that can make your ACT prep more fun and effective.

Activity #1: Gamify Your ACTion Goals

As this article about gamification explains, the process ''encourages participation in something by adding game-like elements to a task that is not a game. Three common elements are points, badges, and leaderboards.''

Gamifying your ACT prep goals makes the study process more enjoyable.

Use a gamification app to set your ACT prep study goals. Get badges and rewards with each ACT prep achievement. Some apps to try include Bounty Tasker and Epic Win. Both of these are virtual to-do lists that mimic a role-playing game (RPG).

Activity #2: Prep InterACTively

Doing the same ACT prep activities over and over can quickly get boring. However, using a combination of tools can help you get dynamically involved in your ACT prep.

The neatly arranged, searchable ACT prep lessons on include different learning tools like videos, written lessons, worksheets, and quizzes. Use this handy Practice and Study Guide to get an overview of what's on the ACT, then figure out what areas may need additional prep.

Activity #3: ACT It Out

Is a certain part of your ACT prep holding up the study process? Consider acting out the more challenging material.

Try reading the material aloud. Really think about the words and ideas. When you're taking the ACT at the test center, you can act out the passages silently, in your head.

Acting out difficult concepts can make ACT prep more interesting and effective.

Here's another approach to ACTing it out: Imagine that you have to explain a complicated topic, like quadratic equations or scientific experimental design, to a close friend or younger sibling. Carefully describe and clarify each element out loud. Consider the questions your friend might ask and formulate answers to them.

You can also use drawing, music, or gestures to work through the concepts you're trying to learn. Engaging your other senses will strengthen your memory as you prep for the ACT.

Activity #4: Personalize Reading & Writing Prep

Are you mesmerized by music? Can't get enough of coding? Fascinated by filmmaking? No one knows your interests better than you do. There are special-interest publications covering virtually every topic imaginable. If you're tired of reading generic passages to prep for the ACT's Reading Section, practice with more intriguing articles.

Once you've identified some reading material that personally interests you, think about things like the word choices the writer made. Look for the main ideas of the passages you read. Think about the tone the author used. Can you summarize the article in your own words?

Personalized reading and writing activities make ACT prep more fun.

During the writing portion of the ACT, you might be asked to write an essay expressing a certain viewpoint. You may even have to explain two opposing viewpoints. To prepare, think about any current controversies that interest you. For instance, do you agree with the NFL's new rules about sacking the quarterback? Or, if you're a language lover, what do you think about bilingual education?

Ponder the different ways you could make your arguments—or maybe even argue for both sides. Then, practice writing persuasive essays based on topics you personally enjoy.

Activity #5: Get Graphic with Your ACT Prep

Some people struggle with the tables, graphs, and charts used in the ACT. Helpful videos, like this one, demonstrate how to interpret these visual aids. Once you have a basic understanding of them, get some hands-on practice by creating a few graphs, charts, and tables of your own.

Use a table to record your workouts or your gaming victories. For example, if you go running almost every day, you could record your distance and speed in a table. Then, take that same information and plot it on a line graph or a bar chart.

Understanding charts and graphs is an important part of ACT prep.

Or, maybe you're trying to save for a car, and you need to put more money into your savings. Make a pie chart to help you visualize where your money goes. With each slice representing a part of your budget, from food to clothes to entertainment, you can easily see where to make cutbacks. You'll get firsthand experience with building and interpreting a pie chart and other kinds of charts and graphs—which will add some fun to your ACT prep.

For more entertaining ways to prep for the ACT, use the engaging resources on You'll find dozens of dynamic video lessons and interactive quizzes to make your ACT prep come alive!

By Michelle Baumgartner
April 2019

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