Have a child in their junior year of high school? Here’s some college advice you can use to help them prepare for applications now. Yep, now.
Make Sure They Dedicate Time Effectively…
At this point in the year your child probably has a lot going on. From homework, to sports, to clubs, to SAT prep courses, their schedule can fill up fast. Make sure you both are thinking ahead about how they need to spend their time. If their prep course meets every Wednesday and there’s an away soccer game on Tuesday night, make sure they get their work done a few days in advance. Nothing good happens when our kids are both stressed out and exhausted.
…And Know When to Say No
Being a well-rounded student is great, but not at the expense of grades and sanity. At this point in the year homework is ramping up, SATs are being taken, and college apps are coming. So if your kids can’t commit to baseball, choir and student government, it’s time to take another look at their schedule. Have them figure out what their favorite activities are and what they can live without. Adjusting their schedule now will help alleviate stress and, who knows, maybe come spring you’ll have more time to get back to it!
Have Them Put the Pen to Paper
Even during junior year, students can benefit from doing some practice college essay writing. It doesn’t have to be with a particular school or question in mind, just putting something down on paper is enough to get those creative juices flowing. It’s also helpful to show the drafts to teachers or family members and see what topics they find the most compelling or well written. With feedback from them your kid will be one step ahead when they have to write their actual essays and personal statements.
Help Them Reach Out
There are tons of post-high school opportunities out there for high school graduates so it can be overwhelming when they have to decide on just one. Figure out what possibilities your kids are most interested in and have them reach out for more information. Whether it’s speaking with a college representative, visiting a school, or talking to a current student, gathering information early on can help them narrow down your final choices.
Applying Early Decision?
Many early decision applications are due in early November. That means October is the time to focus on the application. Make sure your child is meeting with their School Counselor to ensure all the required materials are in order and act as a fresh set of eyes to review their application.