TeenLife Blog

Supporting teen success, one post at a time
Posted Nov. 17, 2017, 11:40 a.m. by Suzanne Shaffer | View Comments
How to Narrow a High School Student's College Application List

Did you know there are over 4,000 four-year colleges and universities in the United States? This makes choosing a college overwhelming. How does your high school student start with a dream list and narrow it down and settle on ones that are good fits academically, socially and financially? First, let’s take a look at some illogical college choices. Colleges might make a student’s list for all sorts of emotional reasons, but in the end, the reasons should be rational, not emotional. Look at your student’s list and determine whether or not any of them fit these criteria: Choosing a college ...

Posted Nov. 16, 2017, 8 a.m. by Suzanne Shaffer | View Comments
10 Tips to Help High School Students Ace the Common App

Most high school seniors use the Common Application to apply to colleges. Since over 600 schools now use this application, students can apply to multiple schools with one application. That doesn’t mean your student should “phone it in,” however. Taking the Common App seriously is the first step in completing an application that will help you stand out and receive an offer of admission. Here are 10 tips that will help high school students ace the Common App this year: 1. Start early and familiarize yourself with the application. Students can now access the Common App site, log in and ...

Posted Nov. 13, 2017, 8 a.m. by Ruth Wilson | View Comments
Our Four Best Tips for Organizing Your Student Without Nagging

Homework is a problem in many families, especially those with high school students who have executive function difficulties and depend upon their parents for help or even to remind them to start a homework assignment. Then, as students get older and want greater independence, homework creates stress as they push back against parental intervention. It can also be a frustrating time for parents, who now have to spend their evenings arguing about homework until both parent and student are exhausted. This also leads to students hearing the message that they’re the problem and seeing homework as a system designed to ...

Posted Nov. 11, 2017, 8 a.m. by Mary Grauerholz | View Comments
Is Your Teenager Ready for a Co-ed Overnight Summer Program?

Summer is the perfect time to challenge high school students with new risks and adventures - but does a coed summer program for teenagers lead to exploits that aren't exactly the sort parents have in mind? Several summer program leaders we talked with say that fears about mixing the sexes on overnight summer programs are often unfounded. The key, they say, is clear communication at all levels: between parent and student; between parent and program; and between program and student. Christina Reiff is director of programs at the High Mountain Institute (HMI) in Leadville, Colo. The institute, which claims to ...

Posted Nov. 2, 2017, 8 a.m. by Bill O'Neill | View Comments
8 STEM Summer Programs That Are Just for High School Girls

Kate Ballantine, assistant professor in environmental studies at Mount Holyoke College, has a favorite memory from her years running a summer STEM program for girls. “My students were walking past the tennis camp to a field. We’re carrying all our equipment – all the science-y stuff. One of the tennis campers yells, ‘What are you guys doing?’ “One of my students said, ‘We’re scientists.’ She was just radiating with this sense of ‘this is who I am now.’” Ballantine’s Restoration Ecology Summer Scholars Program gives high school students a chance to do hands-on research in environmental restoration. Summer programs like ...

Posted Oct. 31, 2017, 8 a.m. by Greg Belanger | View Comments
Ocean Passages Gap Year Navigates Seas of Change in Cuba

Historic change is underway in Cuba – and Maine-based Ocean Passages gap year program combines traditional hands-on sailing with a chance to experience this transformation along the island’s spectacular southern coastline. Aboard a 131-foot schooner, you’ll navigate by the stars, snorkel on remote reefs, explore cays and mangroves – and engage directly in the dialogue about a post-embargo Cuba. Ocean Passages gap year voyages seize this moment to explore the causes and effects from the unique perspective of a Tall Ship and with a commitment to responsible stewardship of the marine environment. Ocean Passages offers fall and spring sailing adventures ...

Posted Oct. 30, 2017, noon by Marie Schwartz | View Comments
Guide to STEM Colleges and Programs

Whether you want to probe space or the human brain; build a bridge or a DNA molecule; work on climate change or emerging technologies, TeenLife and the National Association for College Admission Counseling (NACAC) have a new tool to help you do it. The 2017 Guide to STEM Colleges & Programs is the result of an exciting collaboration between TeenLife Media and NACAC. It not only has valuable advice just for STEM students but also lists more than 300 universities, colleges and other programs that want to recruit creative and dedicated students, including women, minorities and the underserved. Science, technology, ...

Posted Oct. 28, 2017, 8 a.m. by Casey Hoke | View Comments
How You Can Balance on the High School Time Management Tightrope

5:30 a.m. Wake up. 6:20 a.m. Catch bus. 7:20 a.m. Arrive at school. (Two options: Study in the library or hang out with friends.) 7:40 a.m. School day begins: Four 90-minute classes. 2:20 a.m. School day ends. 2:30 p.m. Extracurricular begins. 4:00 p.m. Arrive home. This was an average day of high school for me. After 4 p.m., I had homework – as do many of you reading this. But along with homework, I had other priorities as well and wanted to spend time with friends and family…. And If you also mix in a job, volunteer work, or anything ...

Posted Oct. 25, 2017, 8 a.m. by Capt. Tom McClelland U.S. Navy (Ret.) | View Comments
At Farragut, Military School Training Develops The Right College Skills

One important habit that Ashley Patterson Beaty learned by attending military school at Admiral Farragut Academy: Don’t overlook the details. “There were rules to abide by with demerit consequences,” says Ashley, class of ‘02, who now handles government relations for a clean energy company in Washington, D.C. “For example, black socks were required while in uniform. I initially thought this was totally arcane and with open defiance I wore leopard print socks resulting in two demerits. I was infuriated. But I never got another demerit after that. It was a lesson learned: Details matter, sometimes even for … socks.” Farragut, ...

Posted Oct. 19, 2017, 8 a.m. by Dan Lipford | View Comments
Here's the Secret to Making This School Year the Best Ever

Keep your thoughts positive because your thoughts become your words. Keep your words positive because your words become your behavior. Keep your behavior positive because your behavior becomes your habits. Keep your habits positive because your habits become your values. Keep your values positive because your values become your destiny ~ Mahatma Gandhi The single most important element to make this school year great is your thoughts, because that’s where it starts. Elena Aguilar wrote a blog on edutopia.org in August 2012 aimed at teachers, but it’s equally applicable to students. Here’s part of what she said: “If I could, ...

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