According to a recent survey 39% of high school students said they were tired while at school and 29% said they felt stressed. High school students are overwhelmed with carrying a heavy course load, being involved in extracurriculars, playing sports and preparing for exams like the SAT and ACT. So how can you help your student prioritize? What are two things your students shouldn’t spend their precious time on?
1) SAT Subject Tests in areas they don’t already excel.
SAT subject tests help students stand out among the crowd, but they should be submitted in areas your student intends to study and naturally excels. The exams will require some study to make sure the material is fresh in their mind. However, they can take the exam as soon as they have finished the relevant coursework. All of their hard work they have already done for school will help them on the test.Also, if your student is not interested in a career in math or the sciences, don’t make them become an expert in those subject areas. Focus time only on the subjects that come naturally. You don’t need to add to your student’s burdens by expecting them to become a whiz in areas they don’t intend to study in depth in college.
2) Taking advanced courses in all subjects.
When a student excels in one subject they are often forced into advanced courses for all subjects. Many students feel pressure to perform equally well in all subject areas. This can be a huge burden for students that don’t love literature or can’t stand math. Just because a student takes an AP course in history does not mean they should take an AP course in calculus. Evaluate the subjects your student enjoys studying and pursue that coursework. Those are probably the subjects you student will study in higher education and use in their career path. When you allow your student to pick and choose which advanced coursework they will take, they will be free to excel in the subjects they love without the pressure of overachieving in everything.
Encourage Your Student
When students are encouraged to pursue the subjects that they enjoy and do well in, all of their grades may improve. It is important to have a well rounded education, but not every course needs to be advanced. Free your student up to enjoy school and help them evaluate their hopes for the future so that they can choose the best courses and SAT subject tests that will allow them to pursue their goals.