It is your first year of high school, which means, the first step towards college. High school is an exciting and important time for self-growth and experiencing new things. It is also a time to put the right things into priority. As early as it may seem, the road to college really starts your first year of high school. Though right now, your first priority as a high school freshman may not always be about college, it is important to avoid some common mistakes that freshmen make in order to head towards the right direction for your future.
Your time in high school is going to pass pretty fast. Before you know it, you are going to be a senior in high school, applying for college admission. So, even a little preparation during your first year of high school can go a long way to help you get into the college of your dreams. A good way to start is by avoiding the 3 critical common mistakes made by high school freshmen:
1. Believing Your Freshman Classes and Grades Don’t Really Matter In Your Transcript
Too many freshmen think that they can take whatever classes they want during their first year and that their grades will not count until junior year. This is absolutely incorrect because college admissions boards will look at the cumulative GPA, as well as your junior and senior year GPA. If you slack off during your first year, it will be hard to catch up later. Your first year GPA could pull down your overall GPA, even if you get really great grades during the latter years of high school.
It is also important to remember that your first year classes will determine what you can and cannot take the second year. For instance, if you slacked off in Algebra 1, you may not be allowed to take Honors Algebra II your sophomore year. This could hurt your chances of taking an AP Calculus class later on your senior year. So take the right courses that are right for you: challenging, but doable.
2. Placing Too Much Importance on Your Social Life
Having a social life is great, but your grades should never be sacrificed for it. Your grades are what is going to get you into a good college, not your friends or your social life.
The trick to it is having a good balance. For instance, you can set up a study group with your friends. This way, you can still hangout with your friends, but still finish your homework and put in a study session or two. Just make sure that you are still getting your work done and that your study group doesn’t turn into social hangout.
3. Not Being Involved In Extracurricular Activities
Do not ever think that you don’t have time for extracurricular activities. Everyone is busy with homework and studying for exams; however, just because you have good grades in school does not necessarily mean that you will get into a good college.
College admission boards are looking for well-rounded students. They are looking for someone who can balance schoolwork with extracurricular activities.
The other reason being involved in extracurricular activities is important is because it gives you a chance to take leadership positions. Sure, you may not become the President of the Art Club in your first year, but getting involved with the club can help you get to that position by your junior or senior year.