Today my oldest child, Megan, starts high school.
While it’s really easy for me to get self-reflective and think about my own high school experience and how having a high school aged child makes me feel old, none of that really matters to her.
I want to share one thing that I shared with her last week about the start of high school: Make high school about high school.
- High school isn’t about preparing for the next thing. It’s about today.
- It’s not about picking a career. Very few 18 year olds know what they want to do for a career. Very few 35 year olds seem to know, either. Chill about a career.
- It’s not about prepping a resume for college. Being really busy and joining 5 clubs and volunteering 1000 hours isn’t going to help you get into a top school. We’re more interested in “college fit” than some stupid number in a magazine anyway.
- It’s not about learning job skills. You’ll have decades to work on that.
- Your school might require “professional attire” but don’t make high school about preparing for a profession. And if you end up doing a profession you love, you’ll wear what you need to wear and love it.
High School is About High School
Do stuff just because.
Try new things.
Do something you love and something you hate.
Push yourself to learn and let grades take care of themselves.
Learn how you learn.
Learn how to study.
And learn how to get by without studying…
Complain. Rage against the machine. Dream about making things better.
Understand that the best parts of high school aren’t even in the classroom, don’t miss the good stuff.
Make really good friends.
Waste time with them.
Laugh until you snort.
Make friends that you’re OK laughing so hard that you aren’t even embarrassed that you snort.
Don’t worry about us, we’ll worry about you enough for both of us.
Don’t worry about college, you’re on the right path.
Just chillax. Enjoy.
If you make high school about preparing for adult life or trying to get into the “best school” than you’ll miss out on something great.
Make high school about high school.
Get after it.
Don’t devalue today by making high school about tomorrow.
You’ll be glad you did.
Mr. Keating sums this up pretty well…
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