As parents, we seek opportunities to support our children as they learn and grow into young adults. During these teen years, we step back from making many of the decisions. We relinquish the wheel so they can drive the proverbial bus.
For them, considering what happens after high school is often lower on the priority list than doing homework, spending time with friends, and getting through practice or a shift at work or both. But as parents, we know what is around the corner. Naturally, we want them to leave high school with a sense of purpose and a pathway to move toward work they will love.
Without a sense of direction, the idea of additional schooling after high school and navigating the college application process can feel pointless and confusing for our teens. This is an important time for parent support! There’s time to help our teen construct the scaffolding and help build the foundation. Our children deserve our time and effort to support them with early career thinking.
We’ll share a secret with you: early career thinking isn’t even about careers. In fact, we’d recommend they aren’t initially discussed at all.
The secret to early career thinking in grades 8-12
Early career thinking is about self-reflection, research, exploration, amassing experiences, and incorporating the various educational opportunities our students have. These are the pieces of scaffolding that, when put together, support our students in making the big decisions ahead with solid knowledge about themselves and the potential career fields that interest them.
When students begin this process during the initial years of high school, they are gifted a longed runway to have more experiences and hone the list of future possibilities instead of grasping at straws in the last hour.
Answering the question of what lies after high school requires effort, time, and tenacity. It also requires the time to revisit the thinking as a student has new experiences. A clearer sense of direction that results is the payout for this work. It will serve as a strong foundation of the college application process or in the search for other educational options.
Families need an easy way to get started or move forward.
Sometimes, you just need someone to talk to. If you’d like to learn more about how to build the scaffolding that will support your teen (grades 8-12), schedule a 30-minute free Career Call with us. Learn what steps to take first and why. Discuss what you’ve done and how it’s worked (or not worked!) Discover what resources we have to help. Together, we’ll discuss ways your student can move forward to make decisions based on sound knowledge of themselves and potential career fields.
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