By Adwina Jackson
College may be many years awayÖ or it may be just around the
corner. Whether your kids are 6 or 16, it is important that
prepare them for college long before the time comes for them
For many children going to college is a rite of passage. For
others it is an unknown, a world of mystery.
You never know, your child may not even be sure if they want
attend college to begin with.
Youíll never know if you donít take the time to sit down and
talk with your kids about college. While you are doing this,
you should also consider participating in 5 steps that will
help prepare your kids for college long before that first
Step 1: Communicate with your child about their goals and
dreams. You have to keep the lines of communication open at
times. If you never talk to your child about what they want to
do later in life, you wonít have a sense of what their goals,
dreams and aspirations are. If on the other hand you regularly
engage your children in conversations about education and
future, youíll learn early on the types of studies that might
interest them and can help them make important decisions about
their college career when the time comes.
Step 2: Stay involved in education. You have to be involved in
your childís education from day one. Itís not enough to take
active interest their first day of college. Ask them how they
are doing in school regularly, talk with them about the
they like and the ones they are struggling with. They will be
more likely to lean on you for support during their college
Step 3: Encourage your children to explore new things and
subjects early. Donít wait until they are about to head off to
college to encourage them to try new things. Start when they
are young. Expose them to different subjects, music, sports
other creative activities so they have a chance to experience
much of the world as possible before they make the giant leap
Step 4: Donít push. You should be available for your children
when they have questions about college or pursuing a career,
but you shouldnít be overly aggressive about pushing them
toward attending or even going to a particularly school. Why?
Your efforts may actually backfire and you may find that your
teenager decides to forgo an education all together, not
because they arenít interested, but because they want to defy
your strict orders.
Step 5: Teach your child to start saving early. College is
expensive. As time goes on your child may find themselves
spinning a wheel of deeper and deeper debt. Teach them to be
financially responsible early on by helping them set up a
savings account. It doesnít have to be for school or college
only, but it will help teach them the value of saving a
While you are at it, save some money too.
Preparing your children for college is a big step, but a
one. Youíre children will thank you one day for taking time
of your schedule to help them through their college years.
About The Author: Adwina Jackson is a wife and mother of a
young boy. She's also the editor of Inspiring Parenting, an
online source of valuable parenting information. Please visit
www.InspiringParenting.com for helpful and free
parenting info. Observe your children's health, growth and
development by clicking the website.