Multiple classrooms, busy hallways, tougher subjects, more homework… sounds terrifying! And transitioning to high school can be terrifying for both students and parents alike, but the right approach can smooth out the process. Follow these tips to help you and your child prepare for high school.
The amount of work students are expected to do in high school is a major step up from elementary school. While grade 7 teachers work with students to help them prepare for high school, it isn’t always enough to give them a clear picture of what to expect.
In elementary school, kids can usually get by without doing much homework or studying, which can lead to lazy habits. If a student doesn’t need to do something, why do it? Approaching high school in the same way will drastically lessen a student’s odds of success. Strong studying skills are essential to thriving in high school, and the earlier students develop them, the better.
Encourage your child to create an after-school study routine. It might not look like much—an hour of math homework, half an hour of reciting literary devices, making personalized notes based on what the teacher handed out—but it makes a massive difference. The key is to make homework and studying part of a true routine that students follow every night, even if they don’t necessarily have to. Then, when they receive high school’s increased workload, it’ll feel natural.
It isn’t always easy to create and stick to a routine, so we’ve come up with some ways you can help with homework and studying. If you would like some professional help coming up with an effective study plan, we encourage working with a high school tutor. A tutor can have an overwhelmingly positive impact on a student’s development!
Life Skills Are Hard to Measure, but They’ll be Tested Too!
As kids get older, it’s expected that they take on more responsibility. For some, it feels long overdue, and they can’t wait to have more freedom to do what they want. For others, it feels like too much too soon. Regardless, high school forces kids to adopt higher levels of personal responsibility, and you can help them prepare for high school by easing them into new responsibilities ahead of time.
Do It Yourself
Adolescence often comes with the potent side effect of inflating kids with a distorted sense of autonomy. Rather than seeing it as a negative thing, the desire for autonomy—mixed with a bit of guidance—is wonderful because students need to be autonomous to succeed in high school.
Confidence stems from the feeling of “I can do it,” and enabling your kid to do it is one of the best ways to prepare them for high school.
When purchasing school supplies, let your kid choose their own (as long as they fit the budget). Making those choices will help them feel like their input matters, and they’ll actually enjoy using their supplies. The importance of comfort can’t be overlooked! Plus, choosing the right supplies has a lot to do with organization.
In high school, teachers won’t be checking in with students as often to make sure they’re organized. This can lead to clumsy habits like haphazardly shoving homework and notes into backpacks instead of putting them in binders. This is where it’s important for a student to have their own say; if they know they won’t use a binder, they need an option that will work for them, like separate notebooks for each of their classes. Every student is different, so help yours figure out what works best and let them roll with it.
Choose What’s Right for You, Not Your Friends
In high school, students have an opportunity to choose their own classes for the first time. Since they’ve always been in the same class as their friends until now, they might feel obligated to choose the classes their friends are choosing in hopes they’ll get to spend more time together.
But high school is different from elementary school in that it strongly encourages a sense of identity. Kids will have to start making their own decisions according to what they want to do and not what they think others want them to do. Choosing the classes they’re most interested in will make high school much more enjoyable than signing up for all the classes their friends like. Don’t worry, they’ll still have time to hang out at lunch!
Prepare for High School with Integration
Before your child graduates elementary school, take advantage of all the resources available to help prepare for high school. Many high schools offer tours and orientation days for upcoming students, and these can help make the school feel more familiar before a student’s first real day.
Consult the school’s website or talk to the principal to see what sorts of clubs and extracurricular activities the school runs. If your child is interested in a program organized by the school, they might feel more excited than anxious to attend.
If there’s an opportunity for your child to interact with and befriend kids already in high school, it’ll make the transition a lot smoother. They can lend insights and field any questions your child has, and they can be a familiar face among the crowd on the first day of school. Also, they might be able to help with homework!
We Can Help!
Transitioning to high school isn’t easy, but we’d like to make it easier. Our twisted tutors are happy to offer transitional tutoring for students wanting to prepare for high school. We’ll ensure your student is academically and mentally ready for any challenge awaiting them—they’ll be so ready that it won’t feel like a challenge at all!
If you’d like to learn more about how Tutoring…With a Twist* can make a difference, don’t hesitate to contact us. We can’t wait to work with you!
To get a head start on the transition to high school, check out our hand-picked education resources. There’s tons of good stuff in there!
*Services provided by With a Twist Education Ltd.