General Tips for Incoming High School Freshmen

Monday, May 3, 2021

What Should Incoming Freshmen Do to Prepare for High School?

As the school year draws to a close, many middle school students are looking forward to their first year of high school and how to prepare. The start of high school is a major milestone that every incoming freshmen student should celebrate. High school is an opportunity to further develop your study skills, challenge yourself with advanced courses, and explore your interests and passions.

While the transition to high school is undoubtedly exciting, many students are likely to have questions about how to make the most of the next four years. Keep reading to learn some of our top tips to help incoming freshmen start their high school career off on the right foot. 

Stay Academically Engaged

Some incoming freshmen may feel tempted to go on auto-pilot during the summer before the start of high school. Although it’s beneficial to give yourself some time off to unwind, students should strive to stay academically engaged over the summer. It’s important to remember that high school will bring new challenges and the best way to succeed is by preparing ahead of time. If you have summer assignments, avoid putting them off until the final weeks of your vacation. Similarly, keep up with independent reading by consulting a college-approved list of must-read books

Develop Strong Study Habits Right Away

Some incoming freshmen may mistakenly believe that their first year of high school doesn’t count and that college admissions officers only review their academic performance during junior and senior years. In reality, all four years of high school are taken into consideration during application reviews, so you’ll need to have a strong academic start. Consequently, it’s important to prepare for the tests and quizzes that will be coming your way by developing strong study habits. Make sure you have a designated, distraction-free zone in your home that can become your go-to spot for studying. Start creating a daily calendar for yourself and begin blocking out periods of your day that you can devote to reading and preparing for future exams. Stay on top of important dates by adding them to your calendar as soon as possible. 

Explore Different Extracurricular Activities

Admissions officers look favorably upon students with interests and passions that they have pursued at an advanced level. However, incoming freshmen shouldn’t panic if they don’t have designated fields of interest just yet. Freshman year can be an excellent time to explore several different extracurricular activities and discover what you’re most passionate about. If you’ve always been eager to learn guitar, join the tennis team, or write for the school paper, consider the beginning of high school as the ideal time to turn these wishes into realities.

Look Ahead to the Future 

While there’s no need to start preparing for the SAT or drafting your personal statement just yet, that doesn’t mean it’s too soon to start thinking about college. Incoming freshmen can begin doing some research about various institutions and attending virtual tours to get a feel for different types of campuses. Ultimately, the college application process is a multi-year journey and freshmen year is only the beginning. Take some time to familiarize yourself with the different components of the application process and start noting the general timeline that students will follow throughout high school.

The beginning of high school is an opportunity to start fresh and lay the foundation for a strong academic career that will extend beyond graduation. If you’re an incoming freshman student who’s looking to make the most of their high school experience and prepare for the college admissions process, our team can guide you throughout your next four years. 

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