Can you believe it? Although it seems like just yesterday that you were taking your child to their first day of school, they are now coming to the close of their senior year in high school. And, after just a few short months, they’ll be on their way to another first day: their first day of college.
Although it’s a very exciting time in any young people’s life, as we all know, with change comes the need for adjustment. That’s why we wanted to provide you with a few tips on how you can help your teenager make a (relatively) smooth transition from high school to college.
Give them a bit more responsibility. Most teens are between the ages of 17-18 when they graduate from high school. This means that they are far from being little kids, so during the summer leading up to college, make a point to give them a bit more responsibility. If they’ve never had a part-time job, encourage them to get one. If they’ve never paid a bill before, put them in charge of their cell phone expenses. Also, extend their curfew a bit. Not only will these kinds of things make them more accountable, but they will also help you to see their maturity level too.
Have them go shopping with you. If they are planning to live on campus, while it might seem easier for you to simply pick up the things that they need for their dorm room or apartment, opt instead to have them go on each trip with you. That way, they can get (better) used to pricing out items before making actual purchases.
Teach them some basics. There are a lot of teens who go to college and end up calling their parents a few times a day to ask “general life questions”. You can eliminate some of that by making sure they know certain basic things: How to budget, when take their car in for routine maintenance and how to sew on buttons and hem pants or skirts. Simple things like this will make their life a lot easier.
Introduce them to some necessary apps. Your teen is probably on their cell phone all of the time as it is, so why not introduce them to some apps that can make college life easier? Share Your Board is an app that will actually take pictures of what their professor has written on the board. iStudiezPro will help them to keep up with their class schedule. And Amazon Student allows them to take a shot of a barcode on a textbook that they need for a class. That way, the app can let them know where they can get the book for the cheapest price.
Let them figure some things out on their own. Say that your child has been accepted to a few schools in the South and they want to learn more about Maryville College. It might be a habit of yours to do a lot of the research for them, but by suggesting that they do it for themselves, you are encouraging them to be a bit more independent. Remember, while you always want your child to feel like they have your support, you also want them to be aware of the fact that going to college means they are moving into adulthood. Therefore, they need to prepare for that just as soon as they possibly can.