Preparing for School Checklist: Middle School

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Preparing for School Checklist: Middle School

You're only in middle school, and yet it's already time to take some initial steps to make sure you get in to college.

Do well in school.

Study hard and get good grades in middle school, so you're better prepared for high school.

Because once you're a freshman, your grades contribute to your overall GPA and your class rank, which are key factors that college admissions staff look at when you apply. The better your GPA and class rank, the better your chances that schools will accept you.

Participate in extracurricular activities.

Extracurricular activities will not only look good on your college applications, they can better prepare you for the college admissions process itself. That's because extracurricular activities can teach you character-building skills you won't necessarily learn in the classroom, such as enthusiasm, confidence, and how to handle defeat.

Start thinking about what you're looking for in a school.

Don't panic if you haven't yet decided where you want to go after high school. You still have plenty of time for decision making. But do start to think about what's important to you. For example, do you want to go to a school that's close to home or far away?

Start a preliminary list of what you are looking for in a school. Your preferences may change as you get older, but you'll at least have a starting point.

Talk to your parents about budgeting for school.

You're only in middle school, but it's not too early to sit down with your parents and discuss the money you'll need when it's time to go to college.

Find out if your parents plan to contribute to the costs. If that's not possible, there are a few things you can do to start to prepare for the college bills you'll face in the future.

Discuss your educational and career goals with your counselor.

Your guidance counselor is a great resource for helping you to define a path that will lead you to your future goals. What type of schooling will you need? What steps can you take when you get to high school to ensure you will continue with a quality education after high school?

Even if you don't yet have any educational or career goals at this time, your counselor can work with you to develop your educational and career interests.