Road Map for Freshmen

How have your first few weeks of high school been going? Are you settling into a routine and understanding expectations? You’re probably finding that teachers expect more of you in high school than they did in middle school. Remember, however, that you’re not expected to do everything completely on your own. If you’re starting to get grades and they’re not what you would like them to be, connect with your teachers to make sure that you understand the best way to be successful in each class. Your peers are another resource. Make a study group with classmates to support each other and hold each other accountable. Also remember that it’s early in the year and you’ve got plenty of time to improve, as long as you take the opportunities you have.

The biggest mistake I see students make is simply not staying on top of their work. When a student tells me they’re getting a C in a class but their grade will go up because they’re missing assignments, that’s a sign that they need to improve their time management, executive functioning, and other study skills. Don’t be that student! When you get an assignment, make a plan for getting it done with plenty of time before it’s due.  It’s a good idea to actually identify a specific time that you’ll work on it that matches up with how long you expect the work to take. And if you don’t have a scheduling system that you’re already using, put one in place. (I love Smith Rivas’s time management worksheets.) It doesn’t matter if you use a paper planner, apps on your phone, or some other method, but it’s essential to develop a system that works for you.