As your child settles into the high school experience, it’s a great time for them to take on new challenges. It’s also not too early to explore colleges, college majors, and career goals. Use the list below to make 10th grade count.
- Make sure your child meets with the school counselor. Your sophomore should schedule a meeting to talk about college and career options and to make sure he or she is taking the most appropriate classes.
- Encourage your child to set goals for the school year. Working toward specific goals helps your high schooler stay motivated and focused.
- Make a plan to check in regularly about schoolwork. If you keep up with your child’s tests, papers, and homework assignments, you can celebrate successes and head off problems as a team.
- Talk about extracurricular activities. Getting involved in clubs and other groups is a great way for your child to identify interests and feel more engaged in school.
- Help your 10th-grader get ready to take the PSAT, if their school offers it to sophomores. Taking the test this fall can help your child prepare for the SAT or ACT and get on track for college. Sophomores can also use their score reports to figure out which academic areas they need to work on.
- If your child was not offered the PSAT as a 10th-grader, they may be offered the PSAT 10 in February or March. They are the same test, just offered at different times of the year.
- Review PSAT 10 or PSAT results together. Log in to the student score reporting portal with your child to learn what she or he is doing well and which skills your child should work on to get ready for college and career.
- Start thinking about ways to pay for college. Most families get help paying for college costs.
- Discuss next year’s classes. Make sure your child will be challenging him- or herself and taking the courses college admission officers expect to see. Learn more about the high school classes that colleges look for.
- Make a college wish list together. Talk with your 10th-grader about qualities he or she may want in a college in terms of location, size, majors offered, and so on. Check out How to Find a College That Fits You to learn more about deciding on college must-haves.
- Help your child make summer plans. Summer is a great time to explore interests and learn new skills — and colleges look for students who pursue meaningful summer activities. Find out five ways your high schooler can stay motivated this summer.
- Visit a college campus together – in person or online. It’s a great way to get your 10th-grader excited about college.
- Get the facts about college costs.
- Help your sophomore explore career ideas. He or she can make a list of interests, talents, and favorite activities and start matching them with occupations.
- Come up with fun reading ideas. Look for magazines or newspapers your child may like and talk about the books you loved reading when you were in high school. If your family makes reading enjoyable, it can become a daily habit.
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Founder, Weil College Adfvising, LLC