Featured in NYMetroParents, the following article provides insight into college planning for 10th graders by Novella Prep’s founder. These tips will help your teen feel less overwhelmed in planning for higher education.
Helping your child figure out her future education plans can seem like a daunting task, from taking the PSAT, SAT, or ACT to writing essays and going on college tours and interviews. Starting the college planning process early can help your child be better organized, less stressed, make more informed decisions, and even get into a better school. This checklist, broken down by grade level from 10th through 12th grades, is designed to make the college planning and application process smoother—for you and your teen.
College Planning in 10th Grade
Beginning the college prep process as a sophomore will give your teen an idea of what areas he needs to improve in and get him thinking about what he might want to study in college.
Make sure your child takes the PSAT in October. His scores will provide valuable feedback about his current academic skills.
Have her sign into collegeboard.org once her scores are available and link her results to Khan Academy—it will recommend free online lessons to address her academic weak spots.
Discuss your child’s possible career interests. Reach out to people in these fields to find out what a typical day on the job is like.
Help your child begin a one-page resume to document his accomplishments and skills. He will need this information for his college applications next year. If his resume looks thin, have him consider what extracurricular activities he could pursue going forward to round it out.
Compile a list of colleges that you, your child, and his guidance counselor feel are worth considering, along with important information such as the schools’ admission requirements.
Consider having your child take summer pre-college classes at a college, to explore subjects of interest and get a taste of campus life. It will also give her experience competing against a broader range of students, and if she does well it can enhance her college applications.
Encourage him to do paid or volunteer work in a field of interest over the summer.