SAT Math – Percents | Part 1

So you want to take the SAT? This is quite the challenge for nonnative English speakers as it’s even a challenge for native speakers! Luckily, half the test is given in the universal language… MATH. Even so, I’ve noticed some of the math is taught differently in US schools and some of the questions seem to be more focused on this style of problem. I am talking about percentages specifically. I have seen many students struggle with percentages and they almost always make the same mistakes. I’m hoping the strategy that I lay out below will simplify the problems and help you solve them more quickly, but with most maths there are many different ways to approach the same problem. Some approaches will be easier for some students and the same approach will be more difficult for others. This is the technique with which I’ve had the most success.

Part 1: Increasing by a percentage

Ex: What is 180 increased by 5%?

The quickest way to solve this is to write this 180 * 1.05 = 189.
Hold up.
Why is there a 1.05?
I took a shortcut! 180 increased by 5% can be written as:

180 + 180 * 0.5 which is rewritten 180 * (1+0.5) which simplified is 180 * 1.05

I am using the distributive property of multiplication to get 180 * (1+0.5). An easy way to think of this without the steps is to use this formula when increasing Y by percentage X.


Side note: My thought process for solving this on the exam would go something like this. “180 increased by 5%. Do I know 5% of 180? No. What is 10% of 180? Move the decimal to the left so 18, and 5% is half of 10% so 5% must be 9. 180 plus 9 is 189.”

Part 2: Decreasing by a percentage

Ex: What is 120 decreased by 10%?

The quickest way for solving this would be 120 * 0.9 = 108.
Where did 0.9 come from?
I took a shortcut again. 120 decreased by 10% can be written as:

120 – 120 * 0.1 which is rewritten 120 * (1-0.1) which is equal to 120 * 0.9

In short, if you have a value Y and are decreasing by percentage X use this formula:


Side note: If you are doing this math in your head, which is necessary for the “no calculator” portion, this is my thought process. “What is 10 percent of 120? Just move the decimal point to the left so 12. Okay, so 120 minus 12 is 108.”

SAT Math - Percents

Practice: Solve these problems using the technique I described above. Try my thought process as well and see if it helps!


We hope that satisfied your hunger for learning! If you’re looking for a little more for dessert, here’s the rest of our menu: Happy with your service? Give us a like on Instagram or swing by our English school in Milan for an English feast!


Maybe you are trying to give someone directions or your friend needs help cooking and you do not know which verb form to use. Choosing the correct verb form in English is very important and can often times lead to confusion. For that reason, we will look at something called IMPERATIVES.

HINT: it is actually very easy!

Imperatives are used to give instructions or orders. An imperative is formed from the infinitive form of the verb (base form). An imperative comes from the second person, which means we use it to talk directly to someone else.

We can use imperatives to:
Give orders
Give directions

Here are some examples of imperatives in the positive:
Be quiet, the students are working.
Let’s go home
Close the door.
Turn right at the next street.

For the negative, we simply add do not (or don’t) before the infinitive.
Do not shout, I can hear you.
Don’t walk on the grass
Do not run near the pool.
Don’t do that

Try these exercises and test your understanding.


Choose the correct answer.


I hope this went well for you. Thank you for working so hard in and out of the classroom. The more you practice the better your English will be. Let us know if you have any questions in the comments below.

Metal Clouds and Raining Precious Gems

Way out in space it seems like anything is possible. Massive planets that make our sun look like an ant, matter in all forms flying around, and even planets where the clouds may be metal and the rain might be precious gems. It’s almost too hard to believe, but who knows! Join Adam as he dives into this weeks Learn English with the News.

Watch the video and then do the accompanying English language exercises on our website.

The news is a consistent source of entertainment, knowledge and discovery that never ceases to exist and always comes out with more and more material each day. Because it plays such a vital part in our lives and is so important to keep up with, it is without a doubt a piece of your everyday routine that can’t go ignored.

Whether it is to understand the ramifications of recent legislation passed, to hear about recent events and grasp the potential consequences to your country, or simply hear about what is happening in other countries in order to compare them to what’s happening in yours, the news is certainly a staple in our lives and the most consistent way to get information.

This is why Scrambled Eggs has decided to unite two of your biggest worlds: learning English and keeping up with what is happening in the world. We hope our challenging daily exercises, composed of listening, vocabulary and comprehension exercises in English, will satisfy both of those above worlds in a satisfactory and also entertaining way.

So enough about introductions, let’s get to today’s Learn English with the News topic:

Adapted form this article.


Metal Clouds and Raining Precious Gems | Definition Match

Put the following words to the correct definitions.

Metal Clouds and Raining Precious Gems | Fill in the Blank

Fill out the text below with the correct answers.

Metal Clouds and Raining Precious Gems | True or False

Indicate which sentences are true and which ones are false.


And that’s it for today’s English lesson, where you can improve your English with the news and current events. Do you have any comments or special requests for us for the next edition of Learn English with the News? Be sure to leave any feedback you have in the comments section below, as we would love to help you on your quest to learn the English language!

For other Learn English with the News segments, be sure to check out the rest of our posts:

Full text:

855 light-years from Earth, a massive gas giant orbiting a star may have metal clouds and rain made of liquid gems, according to new research. The planet, WASP-121b, was first discovered in 2015 and is similar to Jupiter.

Every 30 hours, it completes one orbit and is tidally locked, much like the moon is to Earth. That means one side of the planet is daytime while the other is night. On Earth, water evaporates and its vapor condenses into clouds, which then release rain. On WASP-121b, this cycle is more vicious.

On the dayside, temperatures range from 2,227 – 3,227 °C in the atmosphere. These blazing hot temperatures rip apart water atoms. These atoms are carried over to the nightside by winds that reach more than 17,703 km/hour. There, the molecules become water again and the process repeats.

On the nightside, things are cooler: the temperature is between 1,527 – 1,227 °C. This difference between the two sides of the planet also means it is cool enough for metal clouds made of iron and corundum, a mineral found in rubies and sapphires, to form.

Much like water vapor that gets cycled around on WASP-121b, these metal clouds may get pushed to the dayside where the metals vaporize into gasses. But before the clouds leave the nightside, they could release rain made of liquid gems.