Saturday, October 21, 2017

Senior Year Check-List

Planning for Senior Year of High School

I truly can’t believe I am here, sitting on the precipice of my first-born child’s graduation year. It sounds cliché, but I do remember looking into her eyes for the first time. Those moments of snuggling with her baby soft brown curls against my cheek and holding her tiny fingers in my palm. Now, like so many parents, I am entwined in a mix of hand-holding yet watching from afar as my child prepares for her official entry into the world of adulthood. Senior year has really just begun, but already the clock is ticking on so many things. Time for my hand-holding mom-side to at least map out a checklist – are you seniors ready (and parents, too)?

Steps for High School Seniors

Make Two Lists of Goals

College is definitely not for everyone, especially for those who are unsure what exactly they would want to actually do with a college degree. Sit down and make two separate lists – one for what you hope to accomplish your senior year, and another for the goals you want to meet after graduation. College doesn’t have to be on the list, but just make sure there are some goals that will help you propel your life forward. Then talk with your parents, guidance counselors, coaches, teachers, and role models so you can get as much advice as possible about how to meet those goals. Your goals for during your senior might include:

  • Make the honor roll each semester
  • Write an article for the school newspaper
  • Attend at least 2 college fairs
  • Attend at least 3 careers fairs
  • Interview people who are doing the jobs in areas I’m interested in pursuing
  • Buy a used car
  • Volunteer at least one hour each week
  • Reach athletic team goals (i.e. letter in a sport)
  • Find a job/work “x” many hours each week

Know the Deadlines

Keep a calendar just for the deadlines you will be facing your senior year. Depending on your goals after high school, your calendar might look very different from the calendar of a classmate, but consider the following things that might need to land on your own calendar.

  • Deadlines for standardized tests – If you haven’t already taken the ACT or SAT and you plan on academics after high school, sign up for one of these tests, now. If you have already taken these exams but you want to try to improve your scores for scholarship or admission purposes, sign up now.
  • College admission deadlines – These start in the fall and usually only continue for regular entry until mid-winter. Don’t wait, though, your options will be greater if you start sooner.
  • Deadlines for financial aid for school – Knowing how much money you might get in grants will definitely help you narrow down your college selection process.
  • Deadlines for scholarships – These can come and go in the blink of an eye, so make sure you write down the deadlines of the ones for which you think you are most qualified.
  • Deadlines for
    • Taking and ordering senior pictures
    • Ordering yearbooks
    • Ordering class rings
    • Ordering graduation announcements
    • Applications for internships, apprenticeship programs, and the military – even if you’re headed in a direction other than college there are still going to be deadlines to meet in order to be successful

Learn (or Practice) Some Practical Skills

As a parent now is the time I reflect on all of the things I intended to teach my child, and all of the things I never did. It is a scary and sobering thought, and I desperately feel like I’m running out of time. Here is an incomplete, but good start, on life skills our kids need by the time they graduate (still working on a few of them in our home).

  • Balancing checkbooks
  • Budgeting and saving money in the most effective ways (our bank offers a special savings account just for older teens with a higher interest rate)
  • Laundry, including the reds, delicates, and dry clean only items
  • Vehicle maintenance
  • Write a resume
  • Smart shopping (grocery, clothing, personal items, and bigger ticket purchases)
  • Healthy cooking – something that doesn’t have to come from a frozen meal or package of processed foods
  • Time management – balancing work, school, and a bit of fun
  • House cleaning – I never realized how many steps there are to adequately clean the toilet until I had to teach that art to my kids…
  • Home maintenance – checking the fuse box, hot water heater, water softener, air conditioner, furnace, and smoke detectors to make sure that they are working, as well as to take care of minor issues independently

So many of these skills we can teach our children by just doing them with our children – instead of just doing them for them. These might seem like the small stuff that just gets in the way of homework and sports, but most of them can just be integrated into daily routines. I’m not certain who worries more about senior year – parents or their kids – but I do know that we both look forward to it, even if in different ways. It marks a point that changes the dynamics of our lives. (Even if for parents we’re not quite sure how we made it this far already.)

Related posts:

  1. My Parenting Bucket List
  2. 21 Kids Not On Santa’s Nice List
  3. Pole Dance Class Offered to Three-Year-Olds

View full post on Parenting Tips For Raising Successful Kids | BetterParenting.com

Senior Year Check-List

Planning for Senior Year of High School

I truly can’t believe I am here, sitting on the precipice of my first-born child’s graduation year. It sounds cliché, but I do remember looking into her eyes for the first time. Those moments of snuggling with her baby soft brown curls against my cheek and holding her tiny fingers in my palm. Now, like so many parents, I am entwined in a mix of hand-holding yet watching from afar as my child prepares for her official entry into the world of adulthood. Senior year has really just begun, but already the clock is ticking on so many things. Time for my hand-holding mom-side to at least map out a checklist – are you seniors ready (and parents, too)?

Steps for High School Seniors

Make Two Lists of Goals

College is definitely not for everyone, especially for those who are unsure what exactly they would want to actually do with a college degree. Sit down and make two separate lists – one for what you hope to accomplish your senior year, and another for the goals you want to meet after graduation. College doesn’t have to be on the list, but just make sure there are some goals that will help you propel your life forward. Then talk with your parents, guidance counselors, coaches, teachers, and role models so you can get as much advice as possible about how to meet those goals. Your goals for during your senior might include:

  • Make the honor roll each semester
  • Write an article for the school newspaper
  • Attend at least 2 college fairs
  • Attend at least 3 careers fairs
  • Interview people who are doing the jobs in areas I’m interested in pursuing
  • Buy a used car
  • Volunteer at least one hour each week
  • Reach athletic team goals (i.e. letter in a sport)
  • Find a job/work “x” many hours each week

Know the Deadlines

Keep a calendar just for the deadlines you will be facing your senior year. Depending on your goals after high school, your calendar might look very different from the calendar of a classmate, but consider the following things that might need to land on your own calendar.

  • Deadlines for standardized tests – If you haven’t already taken the ACT or SAT and you plan on academics after high school, sign up for one of these tests, now. If you have already taken these exams but you want to try to improve your scores for scholarship or admission purposes, sign up now.
  • College admission deadlines – These start in the fall and usually only continue for regular entry until mid-winter. Don’t wait, though, your options will be greater if you start sooner.
  • Deadlines for financial aid for school – Knowing how much money you might get in grants will definitely help you narrow down your college selection process.
  • Deadlines for scholarships – These can come and go in the blink of an eye, so make sure you write down the deadlines of the ones for which you think you are most qualified.
  • Deadlines for
    • Taking and ordering senior pictures
    • Ordering yearbooks
    • Ordering class rings
    • Ordering graduation announcements
    • Applications for internships, apprenticeship programs, and the military – even if you’re headed in a direction other than college there are still going to be deadlines to meet in order to be successful

Learn (or Practice) Some Practical Skills

As a parent now is the time I reflect on all of the things I intended to teach my child, and all of the things I never did. It is a scary and sobering thought, and I desperately feel like I’m running out of time. Here is an incomplete, but good start, on life skills our kids need by the time they graduate (still working on a few of them in our home).

  • Balancing checkbooks
  • Budgeting and saving money in the most effective ways (our bank offers a special savings account just for older teens with a higher interest rate)
  • Laundry, including the reds, delicates, and dry clean only items
  • Vehicle maintenance
  • Write a resume
  • Smart shopping (grocery, clothing, personal items, and bigger ticket purchases)
  • Healthy cooking – something that doesn’t have to come from a frozen meal or package of processed foods
  • Time management – balancing work, school, and a bit of fun
  • House cleaning – I never realized how many steps there are to adequately clean the toilet until I had to teach that art to my kids…
  • Home maintenance – checking the fuse box, hot water heater, water softener, air conditioner, furnace, and smoke detectors to make sure that they are working, as well as to take care of minor issues independently

So many of these skills we can teach our children by just doing them with our children – instead of just doing them for them. These might seem like the small stuff that just gets in the way of homework and sports, but most of them can just be integrated into daily routines. I’m not certain who worries more about senior year – parents or their kids – but I do know that we both look forward to it, even if in different ways. It marks a point that changes the dynamics of our lives. (Even if for parents we’re not quite sure how we made it this far already.)

Related posts:

  1. My Parenting Bucket List
  2. 21 Kids Not On Santa’s Nice List
  3. Pole Dance Class Offered to Three-Year-Olds

View full post on Parenting Tips For Raising Successful Kids | BetterParenting.com

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