Academics may seem a bit challenging, but for most freshman, there is still time to experiment with different extracurricular interests.
The most important things a freshman learns are about herself.
The social order of high school means that kids largely stay in their grade groups.
But in clubs, sports and other activities the grades mix fluidly.
Sleep for teens is like water for plants, it is not pretty when they don’t get enough.
A wise headmaster once suggested to ninth grade parents that they think long and hard about curfews.
In ninth grade, teachers will not mind a bit of input from parents if there are hiccups along the way. Students, by now, should be able to speak up for themselves, but sometimes teachers or counselors need a bit of background and helping a 14-year old. Many high school classes have prerequisites and freshman need to be aware of these and the order in which classes should be taken.
In an ideal world, each student would have a counselor who guides them through the process of course selection and planning their four years. Freshman need to imagine where they would like to end up academically senior year and draw a path of classes that will get them there.
2) Don’t talk to your child about college, but as a parent, start learning about the process, costs, and financing.
Plans change but it helps to set goals from the start.
Finally, freshman year is a year of our kids finding their feet as a high schooler and us finding our feet as the parents of one.
They may choose to defy us, but they should never for one moment be unclear of both the rules and the values our families espouse.
Ninth grade is the year to start (or for some kids, continue) one thing that will carry your student through high school (the newspaper, a drama group, a sport or art activity) and to try other things along the way.