I remember when I was a teacher we had all sorts of benchmark tests to prepare our students for the BIG State Test. I also remember finding fun tests that would prepare them, but were more interesting and didn’t feel like a test. I found one yesterday that I wish I had during my classroom days. It’s called the U-SAT. There are three levels, with questions for math, science and of course reading. The questions are of high interest. This one even has the bubble boxes and response space just like my old state’s test.

Here’s a sample question:

Agent J, one of the Men in Black, is speaking with an alien on his first visit to Earth. The alien notices that, unlike on his planet, Earth switches from daylight to darkness every day. Which of the following explanations is Agent J most likely to use to explain why this phenomenon occurs?

  • A. The change is caused by the movement of the moon around the Earth
  • B. The sun rotates around the Earth as the Earth orbits the sun.
  • C. The sun spins around the Earth.
  • D. The Earth rotates on its axis as it orbits the sun.

Need help with the answer? Check out Cosmeo for the Night and Day video, which is a segment from TLC Elementary School: Liftoff Into Space.

Let’s try another question. We’ll go for math this time.

For an upcoming concert at Hard Rock Live, a band is using two price structures. There are 80 seats set up on the floor that are selling for $75.00 each. The rest of the venue is general admission. The cost for admission if you’re not in a seat is $40. The whole concert completely sold out. If total admission receipts equaled $29,600.00, what’s the maximum occupancy of Hard Rock Live for this show?

Again, Cosmeo’s math power is phenomenal. Have you checked this feature out yet?

The reading passages deal with things like history of a park that opened doors to their new other park in 1999, a visit to the Lost Continent, the history of filmmaker Carl Laemmle, and Dr. Doom. Can you guess where I found this U-SAT?

If you can answer the science and math question, plus tell me where I got this wonderful test by leaving a comment below, I’ll put your name in the hat for a fun prize.

Have a great weekend!


  1. Michele Futch

    I’ll see what I can do?

  2. Tom Turner

    I emailed you the answer to the questions….I just can’t find any mention of U-SAT anywhere yet…other then the USA Triathalon team

  3. Nathan Guteras

    Cosmeo is a great resource for my school. We plan our first introduction beyond the Library Media Center sometime in December to our parents, as a holiday gift for their children.

  4. Kathy Bunch

    I couldn’t find U-Sat or the scenarios either; now I don’t feel so bad!

  5. Cheryl Woolwine

    I am looking!Not giving up yet!

  6. Danielle Abernethy

    Hint: It’s not online yet. You need to think of a place – a physical place. Dr. Doom. A Park with another park that opened in 1999. Agent J. Hard Rock. A film maker named Carl. Come on — you can figure it out!

  7. Cheryl Woolwine

    I believe I have found it.It is Universal STudio Education Program they have downloadable lesson plans and talk about a teacher resource guide with Lessons that are designed to prepare for standardized testing like the Florida Comprehensive Assessment Test, encouraging students to analyze, synthesize and evaluate information presented to them. Like the FCAT, the guidebook includes science, math and reading subject areas.
    But it does not say how to get it! I guess you have if you register for one of their educational programs you receive it, as it does say complimentary.

  8. Danielle Abernethy

    Great Job Cheryl! The U-SAT is the Universal Studios Achievement Test. I got my copy (with permission to post some of the questions to the blog) the other day. I found it very entertaining, and it really did meet the standards. Reading for meaning was so much more fun when reading about Dr. Doom.

    But, now what are the answers to the questions? Which explanation did Agent J give and how many general admission seats were sold at Hard Rock?

  9. Cheryl Woolwine

    The answers are:(D) The Earth rotates on its axis while it orbits the sun. And the second answer: The Hard Rock Live Show has 590 general admission seats.

  10. Wendy Norton

    I know I am part of South Florida but cannot help but become engrossed in your blog. I new the answer to the first question since it is an FCAT 5th grade practice question and I too found the information after I called the Hard Rock, easier than searching, that the hard rock show had 590 generatl admission seats. Does this have something to do with FETC??? This si sooo much fun.

  11. Wendy Norton

    Oops, I think I wrote that wrong actually I called after I got the math answer to see if it was true and the guy told me it was correct. It sounded like I didn’t do the math. I am having brain drain.

  12. Danielle Abernethy

    I can’t believe you called Hard Rock. LOL- that is too funny. Can you imagine what it would be like if kids could use a “life-line” on the FCAT. Who would they called?
    South Florida, North Florida – doesn’t matter. Georgia and any other state is welcome here too. We’re all STARS!

  13. Michelle Brown

    I could not find the U-SAT either, but now I know where to find it after reading the blog (Universal Studios). The science answer is d and the math is 670.

  14. Danielle Abernethy

    Hmmmmm…..interesting….two different math answers. Only one is correct. Who is it? Michelle, did you do the right computation? Wendy did Hard Rock tell you the right numbers?

  15. Danielle Abernethy

    To be fair, Tom emailed me earlier. He didn’t want to post his answer on the blog for some reason. He finally emailed me the right answer. Here is his first response:

    D and 670 are the 2 answers….still looking for your practice test though :)

    So we have 2 who give the 670 and one who gives 590. Who’s right?

  16. Cheryl Woolwine

    80seats@$75per seat = $6000 earned seated by guests

    $29600 total minus $6000 = 23600

    $23600 Divided by $40 general admission = 590

  17. Kathy Bunch

    Danielle, I bet you have laughed real hard today!! This dialog cracks me up!! I think it’s cheating if you used a resource not online! Pretty sneaky!!

  18. Cheryl Woolwine

    Danielle you had two people say 590 did you for get me!? And I am sticking by it!

  19. Cheryl Woolwine

    The resource is not online but the information about it is. I was able to find it before her hint. Oh well it is all fun anyway! I guess we all have nothing else to do on a Satyurday night!

  20. Michele Futch

    WOW! You all amaze me!

  21. Michele Futch

    Does the quiz and info mean there might be a Universal Studios Field Trip?

  22. Danielle Abernethy

    Cheryl, I apologize! I have your name in the hat too.

    Hmmmm…..a trip to Universal Studios would round out our Amusing Times with DEN, wouldn’t it?

    Hey – only a few more days to get your comments in for the contest! Make sure you are commenting on South Florida’s blog too!

  23. Teryl Magee


    Okay, I didn’t post my answers on your blog earlier…didn’t know where to get the USAT stuff…but now I know, and it sounds great. For the science question I answeree D and for the other I answered 670. I guess I will get to meet you on Nov. 1 at the NMSC with Gerard. I am still not sure if I will get to do dinner with you all…I have to be at work at 10:00 the next day in Knoxville and I didn’t get a hotel (teacher’s salalry, of course)! The drive is about 3 hours. Have a great weekend!

  24. Tom Turner

    I have no idea why I emailed you and didn’t post…

    OH YEA….sleep deprivation!

  25. Tom Turner


    Your math is RIGHT ON…however, the last step is what the question is asking…”what is the maximum occupancy?” Therefore, you have to add the 590 + the original 80 seats. Thus giving us the answer of: 670.

  26. Danielle Abernethy

    YEAH TOM! You read the entire question!

    Teryl, looking forward to meeting you this week. Welcome to the North Florida Blog!

  27. Cheryl Woolwine

    Okay Tom I stand corrected! I am as bad as the kids.

  28. Tom Turner

    No Worries Cheryl….

    I wasn’t trying to call ya out. I’m just proud of myself because I was always bad at word problems way back when I was in school.

  29. Danielle Abernethy

    And I’ll admit. I only got it right because I had the answers. The first time I solved it I had the same answer. :-)

  30. Bethany Rosenhack

    Hey Danielle, when do we find out about the free trial for Cosmeo? Is that still in the works? I would love to show it to PTA when I pitch United Streaming.

    ~Bethany R

  31. Debbie Bohanan

    If you are demonstrating COSMEO to your PTO make sure you are on a PC. We had Mac issues at my school. If your Macs run OS9, the latest version of flash is not available and COSMEO will not run on that computer.

  32. Debbie Bohanan

    It’s fun reading all the comments. Word problems were always tricky, especially if you didn’t read the entire question.

  33. Debbie Bohanan

    The answer to your science question is definitely D.

    I didn’t need COSMEO to solve the math but it was fun. I multiplied $75 X 80 seats to equal $6,000. Then I subtracted $6,000 from the total cost and divided that number by $40 which gave me 590. So 590 + 80 = 670 seats. Who knew you could get so many people in that place?

    U-SAT definitely deals with Universal’s Islands of Adventure. It’s hard to believe that the park has only been open for 7 years.

  34. Danielle Abernethy

    You’re right that it deals with the Islands of Adventure. It’s the Universal Studios AMUSEMENT Test.

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