How to Ace your Freshman Year of High School
Mackenzie Warren is a junior at Carnegie Vanguard High School, and founder of a club called Swimming Downstream. Carnegie Vanguard is the #6 high school in the nation and that ranking doesn't come without a lot of hard work . . . and homework. Mackenzie’s club helps new students get a head start, and learn how to deal with the high expectations. She is a very impressive student and a great soccer player, but the thing that surprises her club members the most is that even with the amount of homework that she gets at Carnegie, she gets to bed before 10:30 every night.
At our interview, Mackenzie told me that she had a learning curve when it came to being a successful student at Carnegie. Here I'll tell you what she learned and her main tips to succeeding in high school with the grades you want and a reasonable amount of sleep.
Start off with the right mindset.
"A lot of freshmen come in thinking that this is middle school. Coming in thinking that is anything like middle school is already putting you at a disadvantage." The homework loads are much larger in high school and it's important for incoming freshmen to realize this so they can mentally prepare.
Time utilization and organization.
"These are two things that you [really] need to have under your belt . . . If you know how to prioritize your time, that will help you be more efficient when you're getting through your work. If you work hard you'll be able to pound through it, and it'll allow you to have a lot more endurance versus procrastinating. As a freshman, you will have a lot of different classes that you will tend to struggle with." she explained. "Time utilization and organization are not only skills for a freshman to master for high school, but they are also life skills that will prove extremely valuable when you possibly start a business ten years down the line but they are also skills for life when you start a business or something 10 years from now."
Find some time for yourself.
Many ambitious high schoolers cram many extracurriculars into their already booked schedule. It may sound impossible but it's important to leave some time for yourself. "I play soccer, and it really helps me just by being able to balance myself. If I'm feeling stressed it's a great way for me to really release that anxiety." Mackenzie told me.
“I'm proud of where this club has come and I'm glad that I get to interact with freshman. I know there are those stereotypes like ‘fish are food not friends ‘but I'm happy just for freshman to be able to use it as a social outlet."
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