Action Plan for Freshman Year
Freshman year is an exciting time for your student (and you!) -- a new school, new friends, and challenging new classes. Though your student has a lot going on, it's important that together you start to plan for the future.
The phrase "college preparation" may bring to mind images of campus visits, college applications and the SAT®. But these days, college prep involves much more, and it starts earlier than Junior Year. Review your child's college options now. Learn what resources the High School has to offer and encourage your student to take advantage of them.
There are many exciting events that happen in highschool. With over 40 clubs, many athletic events and over 180 teachers it is hard to stay on top of what is important. If your student is interested in a club, sport, class teacher it is strongly suggested that they follow those on Twitter to ensure they do not miss out on important information.
The first week of school the counselors will be working on time sensitive schedule requests. Once they complete this, they will open their online appointment calendars. Your student has plenty of time to get to know their individual counselor, as they are assigned by alpha and will be with your student for the remainder of their time at AFHS.
● Find out what courses our school offers, the graduation requirements for WCPSS, and how the grading system works.
● Make sure he/she is enrolled in strong college preparatory classes.
● Learn what extracurricular activities are available, join a club. A list of available clubs can be found on our website.
● Help your student create a four-year schedule of recommended classes that meet the basic requirements for high school graduation and college admission. Colleges prefer four years of English, History, Math, Science, and a Foreign Language.
● Your student should also select meaningful electives, Advanced Placement courses if appropriate, and other academics in which he/she shows an interest.
● Just like his/her academic schedule, help your student plan a four-year extracurricular and athletic activity schedule. Encourage your student to stick with commitments.
● Honors level students may consider taking the PSAT/NMSQT® (Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test). Most students take the PSAT/NMSQT in the FALL of their Junior Year however 9th,10th and 11th grade students are able to register. It is recommended that your student has taken/passed Math 1 before signing up for the fall PSAT. Registration begins the second week of school and the test is given at the school in October. When the registration window opens it will be posted on the MAIN page of the website. Follow the student services Announcements page for the latest details.
● Encourage your student to read, read, and read some more. Reading develops interests, expands knowledge, and improves vocabulary and reading comprehension skills needed for college and for standardized tests.
● Together with your student, review how the student is doing in each of their key subject areas. Encourage them to keep up the good work, and set goals for improvement in weaker subjects. Learn how you can help your student develop good homework skills.
● Motivate your student to keep up with independent reading.
● Get informed about college costs. Explore your family's options for financing your child's college education and learn how financial aid works.
● How much money will your family need to pay for college? Use the online College Savings Calculator.
● Calculate your Expected Family Contribution (EFC) to get an estimate of how much your family can reasonably be expcected to pay towards college. Use the online EFC Calculator.
● Now is a great time for your student to start looking for a summer job, internship, or volunteer opportunity. The summer is a good time for him/her to learn more about an area in which she's interested. For example, being a camp counselor can give a student who's interested in teaching a taste of what to expect.
● Your student can check with his/her school counselor and search online for summer learning programs offered to high school students at colleges and other institutions.
● Have your student finalize his/her summer plans.
● Encourage your student to read great literature this summer. Your student can ask their teachers or the school librarian for book suggestions.
*Partial Resource: CollegeBoard .com