Planning for the future

As we enter into March, there are many things going on.  One of them is that we start looking forward to the next school year and what needs to be done to finish this year well and prepare for the coming school year.

Here are some helpful hints for each grade….

7th Grade

Keep working hard and stay focused.  Remember you are building the foundation right now, and it is important to have a strong foundation on which to build the rest of your education!

8th Grade

Start making a plan to read, read, read over the summer break.  Reading is one of the easiest ways to increase your vocabulary and to keep your mind working.

Make sure you keep on track in your math class so that you are setting yourself up for success during your high school career.  Use this time to develop good study habits.  Participate in class, ask questions, take good notes, and get your homework done and turned in on time.

If you use this time to develop good study habits and build a strong foundation, you will have a great time in high school!

Freshman

As you look forward to your Sophomore year, keep studying hard and establishing a strong academic foundation.  This is the time where you can develop good study habits that will follow you through your academic career. Please do not think that you can wait until your junior and senior year to be dedicated to your school work.  If you wait that long, you will have a difficult time bringing your GPA up, and you will not have developed the skills you need to be able to succeed in the harder classes.

In your math classes it is important to stay focused and to work hard.  Math is a building class, and so if you miss concepts early on in your academic career, you will struggle when you get to the more complex concepts.  Also, keep in mind that many universities want to see you accomplish 4 math classes in your high school career.  So it is important for you to focus now, instead of having to go back and retake something that you missed the first time.

Continue to read, read, read!

Sophomore

Make a plan to read, read, read over the summer.  This would also be a great summer to get involved! Adding extra-curricular activities and community service are great for college applicaitons.  Use this summer to volunteer at VBS, take a mission’s trip, find a job, or join a sports league.

This is an important time to make sure you know what is required for graduationand that you are on the right track.  If your goal is to graduate with an honor diploma, then you will need to take 2 Advanced Placement test classes, or 1 Advanced Placement class and 1 dual credit class.  You will also need to complete 4 years of math through Pre-Calculus and Spanish 3.  Keep in mind that colleges want to see you do the best you can at a level that is challenging without being impossible.

Junior

Junior year is an important and difficult year.  It is important to stay focused and to keep working hard to excel in all your classes.

You can begin searching for scholarship opportunites.  Search engines like fastweb.com and collegeboard.com are helpful in alerting you to scholarships available.

This is the time where you should start taking the SAT so that you have a chance to take it several times if you would like.  I would recommend that you not have your test scores sent to schools in which you are interested, so that you can continue to improve your scores without the schools seeing the poor ones.  To register for the SAT, go to www.collegeboard.com.  Collegeboard is also a great resource for researching universities and studying for the SAT.  If you have any questions or need help, please see me any time! :)

This is also the time when we will start planning your schedule for next year.  Keep in mind that colleges and universities want to see you maintain a rigorous schedule.  That means that you take a math class your Senior year, as well as any advanced classes you are prepared for.  I know it is tempting, but senior year is not the time to slack off.  Keep working hard and powering through, and you will see the rewards in college!

Senior

Make sure you fill out your FAFSA by March 11, 2011, so that you can receive financial aid.  Continue to get scholarship applications filled out in order to get the most financial help possible!

Now is the time to narrow down your college choices if not already done.  Visit any of the schools in which you are still interested and try to make sure you are there on a day where you can get an accurate representation of what a normal day at the school looks like.  You can also attend any Open Houses that universities might be having, which will give you a good idea of the school as well.

Seniors, keep working hard in order to finish well!  Keep in mind that schools look at your final transcript before the final admission.  Work hard to make sure colleges will like what they see :)

Graduation is just around the corner, so stay focused, and it will be here before you know it! :)

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