June 2013 Lesson Plans
Welcome to June and what I consider the beginning of the “school” year!
We have a group of parents leaving us—the parents of seniors attending college in two months. If they have been with us a while, their child has already picked their college for fall and are actively completing the activities their specific college requires them to do before starting the fall semester. They are prepared to continue applying for “free money”—scholarships and grants—while they are in college and are patiently waiting to hear the outcome of the scholarships they applied for this year who have still not announced their winners. Farewell to them and best of luck in your future endeavors.
Parents of students who just finished their junior year of high school, you are the new parents of seniors! Starting right now, your children are seniors. If you’ve been with us for a while, you’ve had your child take a couple of the entrance exams for college—the ACT or the SAT. You’ve researched the schools that your child is interested in attending and made visits to them. You’ve decided on at least three potential colleges. If you have more than five potential schools, you need to work on getting down to a more manageable number. Your child is already working on scholarships and will continue throughout this extremely important year.
If you are late arriving here, you might want to consider getting the basics down. You can go on my website and subscribe to the DVD and workbook for $25. It will give you access to this information for a year—more than enough time to get it set in your head. If you don’t know what I am talking about, you should go to my website at http://www.collegecommonsense.com and read my recent blog entries under social media.
For all other parents, this is the culmination of years of effort on your part. The more you do in advance, the less stressful the senior year will be. Do yourself and your child a favor—plan ahead and start this process right now. You’ll thank yourself later, I promise. Last month I graduated both my boys—one from college and one from high school. I’ve been a financial aid counselor for the last 10 years at a small liberal arts college in Texas. I know of which I speak. And even though I know that “business” it was still daunting going through this process with my youngest—trying to get into (and pay for) the big engineering college in our state. We did it, but I can tell you that it is much easier if you understand the process.
In my “day job,” summer is the busiest time of year for us. Financial aid is helping the new students and families get their aid in order along with all the current students. We are also sending off all the graduating students and everything that that entails. I will still be sending the weekly lesson plans but you will see a marked difference. The lesson plans are going to give you more assignments to develop your plan of action—who your child really is and what they wish to do in their future. You will see me giving you more assignments where I “turn you over” to someone who is an expert in this area. Still, feel free to email me if you have questions.
If you want to learn more about me and what I do, please check out About me on my website. I have advised thousands of families over the years. My job would be a lot easier if more parents understood this process and what they should be doing with their children before they ever reached the school. This is what I hope to do with my company—College Common Sense. Educate families.
My newsletters, lesson plans, and the resources on my website are free. The only service I charge for is my DVD and workbook, which I offer for a $25 online, annual subscription. This gives you unlimited access to the DVD and workbook for a year. This is the basic information in a concise format (DVD) and then the steps to determine how this personally affects you (workbook).
If online subscriptions are not your favored mode of information, I still offer DVDs and workbooks for sale at $50. On my website, you have the option to purchase this information “the old fashioned way.” If you have several children who will go through this process, then this might be the most economical way to get it.
If your child is in school, it is time for you to get started understanding this process. The earlier you start, the more opportunities you will see.
Each weekly lesson plan will have separate activities for:
Seniors (students going to college in 2013-2014)
High school students or freshmen—juniors (age 14-17)
Middle school students (age 11-13)
Elementary school students (age 6-10)
These are just my rough breakdowns. You can decide where your child’s maturity level falls and use the appropriate lesson plans. These are purely knowledge-gathering assignments. Enjoy them as such with your child.
June Lesson Plans
Week One: 6/3-6/8
Week Two: 6/10-6/15
Week Three: 6/17-6/22
Week Four: 6/24-6/29
Wherever you are in the process, start right now. You can’t go back to do things earlier. Just start where you are and move forward. Good luck to everyone!
Until next month,
Go Forth and Do Good!
Do you have a question for Denise? Try our new Ask a Question page.
My name is Denise Ames and I’ve been a Financial Aid counselor at a small private university in the Texas hill country for the last 10 years. I’ve talked to thousands of families over the years and helped them through this process. A student doesn’t have to feel they are totally dependent on the college to give them free money. This is not rocket science – it’s just never explained in a clear, concise, easy to understand manner. I explain the “Big Picture” and everyone’s responsibility so people can focus on what they can accomplish. I started this business, College Common Sense (www.collegecommonsense.com) as a way to reach more families to explain the processes I’ve developed over the years. I would like to help you and your students too.