Though it may not feel like life is completely back to normal, being able to send your students to school is one small step back toward life as we knew it. With a little semblance of normalcy comes a renewed desire for parents of middle schoolers to make sure their children are ready for high school. Preparation for high school will be a joint effort between parents, teachers, and students. We want to help make sure you have the tools and resources you need. In this article, we are providing five tips for making sure your middle schooler is ready for high school:
How to Make Sure Your Middle Schooler is Ready for High School
1) Implement Effective Study Strategies
One of the most important steps you can take in middle school and even elementary school is helping your child establish effective study habits. If studying can feel like second nature to your student, they will be able to conquer high school and beyond. Some tips for studying effectively include:
- Creating a quiet place that is their own if at all possible
- Provide all the necessary tools for studying
- Helping your students develop a plan for completing work in advance
- Establish the habit of you and your child reviewing homework before the due date
- Make sure you are available for assistance
- Help students establish a morning or evening devotional time with the Lord
With effective study strategies in place, your child will not only be ready for high school but college as well. Furthermore, if you can reduce the occurrences of procrastination, it will be easier to decipher whether your child is advancing or falling behind in some subjects.
2) Implement Healthy Sleeping and Eating Habits
Hand-in-hand with effective study is establishing healthy sleeping and eating habits.
"There is pretty solid evidence that children who are hungry are not able to focus, so they have a low attention span, behavioral issues, discipline issues in the school," said Sibylle Kranz, an associate professor of kinesiology and a registered dietitian nutritionist in the Curry School.
It is not just making sure your kids feel full; they should be eating the right kinds of foods. Fruits and vegetables, whole grains, and protein-rich foods will help children feel satisfied and full while improving their ability to focus and commit what they are learning to memory.
Furthermore, getting outside, discovering nature, and imaginative play is excellent for helping young middle schoolers' mental health. With the surrounding beauty and nature near Waynesville, your older middle school students may enjoy mountain biking and kayaking as well.
3) Begin Choosing Long-term Extracurricular Activities
Extracurricular activities will be a significant part of high school, so it is good for your child to begin exploring options in middle school. Ideally, the activities you and your child choose will be something they thoroughly enjoy.
At Haywood Christian Academy, we have competitive athletics, even in Middle School. We believe that our athletic program should instill positive, Christ-like character that is expressed openly through competition. We also have fine arts programs such as visual art and graphic design, music, drama, and yearbook.
4) Address Weaknesses
As you establish effective study and eating habits, parents and teachers will be able to discover weaknesses and deficiencies. Whether your middle schooler is struggling to grasp a subject area, read on their grade level, or write, middle school is not the time to assume these things will work themselves out. Now is the time to seek mentorship and tutoring to help your child overcome these challenges.
Middle school may also be a season for discovering your child struggles with dysgraphia or dyslexia. Many children experience and overcome these learning challenges, so it is vital to help ensure they are correctly diagnosed and given the tools they need to excel. It is also essential, as a parent, to help your child know that they are not alone. Overcoming challenges will help them feel strong and accomplished.
5) Be Patient with Changes
Your middle schooler will transform from a young child to a teenager during this time. It is important to remember that they need your patience and support.
6) Talk About Their Future
A sixth grader does not necessarily need a map of the future; however, thinking about college and beyond is important even during middle school. If they have goals or careers in mind, you can help your child figure out what subjects will be most important during their high school years. They should take their schoolwork and grades seriously during these years so that it is second nature, by the next step, to pursue excellence. If your middle schooler would benefit from private Christian education, contact Haywood Christian Academy. We can help your student transition to high school with excellence and Christian character.