Tips for Navigating High School

By Guest Blogger Scout McNealy

For upcoming freshmen, the older students, larger campus, and tougher classes may seem intimidating at first. However, you will quickly find that your high school days are going to be some of the greatest times of your life.

Choose the Right Classes

high school gradution

This could be you in 4 years (Source: Pixabay.com)

The classes you decide to take are arguably the most important decisions you will make in high school. While you may capable of taking many different classes, make sure that you are interested and intrigued by the ones you choose. Working on projects and homework for a class you love is much easier than working for a class you do not enjoy.

For example, if you love STEM, challenge yourself in science and mathematics. If you do not enjoy history, then maybe taking AP World History is not the right decision for you. This does not mean to take the easiest possible course oad, but instead to challenge yourself in the subjects you love rather than the ones you do not.

By choosing classes that you love, you will find that in addition to succeeding in your classes, you will enjoy your high school experience even more.

Get Involved

Within the first few weeks, you will be given the opportunity to join countless clubs ranging from robotics, to history, to anime, you name it! There are also different opportunities to play on sports teams.

While all of these clubs and sports are exciting, be careful to not pile too much onto your plate. In addition to a rigorous course load, you can be overwhelmed if you are doing too many extracurriculars at the same time.

Balance extracurriculars with studies (Source: Pixabay.com)

This does not mean that you cannot focus on sports as well as school. Instead, you will need to manage your time better by working ahead on assignments when you have the time. If you stay on top of your schoolwork, you can invest more time in extracurricular activities such as clubs and sports.

Time Management

Possibly the most important aspect of high school is time management. When teachers give you two weeks to work on an essay, for example, this is normally for a reason. Long- term assignments are meant to be spread out over time, not to be started at two in the morning the day that they are due. If you avoid procrastinating on tests and other assignments, you will be able to live a much more stress-free life.

Balance Is Everything

By choosing the correct load of courses and activities, you will be able to enjoy your high school experience without too much stress. If you properly balance your social life, academic life, and extracurricular life, you will love your days as a high schooler.


Scout McNealyGuest Blogger Scout McNealy, 15, has just finished his sophomore year at the Harker School in San Jose, CA.

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Summer Learning for Homeschoolers

By Lani deGuia, Guest Blogger and Curriki Member

Summer:  it’s the time of year when school is officially done!

…or is it?

For many homeschooling parents, the learning doesn’t end in June. Homeschool can be extremely effective when implemented year round. This doesn’t mean the format for the school year strictly remains unchanged throughout the summer months. That could easily burn out children and parents alike. One of the key underpinnings of homeschooling is allowing the child’s curiosity drive learning.

Louvre Museum (Source: Pixabay.com)

Summer is the perfect opportunity to capitalize on that. Summer months are a good time to lay out flexible learning options for both content and a daily schedule. Several reasons for continuing homeschool throughout the summer include:

  1. Maintaining structure and routine. Most children benefit from some type of routine as it helps foster a sense of well-being and purpose.
  2. Providing extra time for re-teaching and remediation. Summer is the perfect time to regain ground on concepts that were a struggle during the year.
  3. Avoiding summer slide. If skills are maintained throughout the summer, there is no opportunity to fall back on progress!
  4. Focusing on passion projects. Make the child’s curiosity the driving force in what they want to learn and explore this summer. When kids are driving the direction of their learning, they stay engaged and appreciate the new knowledge and skills even more.
  5. Experiencing the world-. Use summer months as a chance to go out and see what your communities have to offer through field trips.

Here are additional resources that can help you map out your experiential homeschooling summer plans!

Discovering National Parks

In this ArtsEdge lesson plan from the Kennedy Center, students will learn about the history of national parks and the connection to environmental and political activism. This is the perfect introduction before you explore a national park that is closest to your home. To get you started, check out  for contacts for national parks from the American Museum of Natural History.

Museum of Online Museums

If the weather or your location limits museum excursions and exploration, check out this resource which hosts a directory of virtual field trip experiences. Your child is sure to get enthralled following a rabbit hole through the vast options in the directory!

Encyclopedia Smithsonian

Have a chance to visit the Smithsonian museums in Washington, D.C. this summer? Whether you will or not, this resource can act as a guide through the various artifacts on display at the museum as well as an opportunity to research what you missed in more depth.

Fundamentals of Piano Practice

Is perfecting their inner Beethoven or Elton John on your child’s summer wish list? This is particularly good for older children who are self-directed and have prior experience with piano. This free online course is downloadable as a PDF and breaks down piano practice into a science. If guitar is more of their interest, check out this resource from the Wolfram Demonstration Project which shows demonstrations of 350 different guitar chords.

Make your own Craft Cartoons

Perhaps your child has a talent or interest in art? How much more fun is it to put humor and art together to create their own cartoon? This resource allows you to choose characters, set a language, and design your own comic strip. Finished comics can be printed or emailed to friends and family!

Have any additional homeschooling summer fun resources to share? We hope your homeschool “summer session” is off to a great start!


Lani DeGuiaLani deGuia is a Norfolk, VA-based Educational Consultant with experience writing and developing curriculum and managing school technology.

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This Summer’s Mission: Grow Curriki’s Spanish OER Library

By Kim Jones, CEO, Curriki

Curriki’s new Spanish language site, www.curriki.org/es/, just keeps growing, and we appreciate your contributions and support! We are making a big push this summer to beef the site up before the school year begins, so that more Spanish-speaking students can gain the benefits of Curriki’s hundreds of thousands of online learning resources.

Spanish

Source: Pixabay.com

We created Spanish Curriki in response to growing interest in Open Educational Resources by educators, parents and students who speak and/or teach in Spanish, all around the world. Our mission is to ensure that all children—no matter where they live or what language they speak—receive a world-class education. Access to Curriki’s free OER Library is critical to their success.

Can we count on you?

How to Help

There are four ways you can help grow Curriki’s Spanish-language library of resources:

1. Upload your best Spanish curricula! Curriki has amassed 596 Spanish OER resources after just six months. And although we are extremely proud of this growth, we believe Spanish-speaking students deserve more. Please publish your lesson plans, units, assessments, instructional videos in the areas of language arts, mathematics, science, social studies and history on www.curriki.org/es/.

2. Share the curriculum! If Curriki’s Spanish curricula have value to you, please share it with your fellow teachers and educators. Whether it’s by email, social media, in a blog or on a website, we appreciate your help getting the word out.

3. Volunteer to translate. If you are bilingual, you could help grow the Spanish OER library by volunteering to translate some of Curriki’s more than 256,000 English-language teaching and learning resources into Spanish to reach more students from more countries. Contact Janet Pinto, Curriki’s Chief Academic Officer and Chief Marketing Officer, at jpinto@curriki.org to learn more.

4. Donate! Curriki is a non-profit with no money to spend on translation, but with your help we could hire translators to create Spanish versions of our high-quality English language resources. Donate here and choose donate by Credit Card.

Here at Curriki, we believe that offering Spanish-language curricula is a significant step toward providing teachers, schools and parents around the world with the support they need to reach every child, and for students to access resources in their native language. Thanks in advance for your help!


Kim Jones is the Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer of Curriki.Kim Jones is the Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer of Curriki. Kim is active in driving policy initiatives and is regularly featured as an honorary speaker on the impact of technology in education at influential meetings around the world. Learn more at Curriki.org.

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La Misión de este Verano: Aumentar la Biblioteca Española de OER Curriki

Por Kim Jones, Director Ejecutivo, Curriki

¡El nuevo sitio en español de Curriki, www.curriki.org/es/ , sigue creciendo, y apreciamos sus contribuciones y apoyo! Estamos haciendo un gran esfuerzo este verano para mejorar el sitio antes de que comience el año escolar, para que más estudiantes de habla hispana puedan obtener los beneficios de los cientos de miles de recursos de aprendizaje en línea de Curriki.

Creamos Curriki Español en respuesta al creciente interés en Recursos Educacionales Abiertos por educadores, padres y estudiantes que hablan y/o enseñan en español, en todo el mundo. Nuestra misión es asegurar que todos los niños, no importa dónde vivan o qué idioma hablan, reciban una educación de clase mundial. El acceso a la Biblioteca gratuita de OER de Curriki es fundamental para su éxito.

¿Podemos contar con usted?

Como ayudar

Hay cuatro maneras de ayudar a desarrollar la biblioteca de recursos de Curriki en español:

  1. ¡Sube tus mejores planes de enseñanza en español! Curriki ha acumulado 596 recursos de OER en español después de sólo seis meses .Y aunque estamos extremadamente orgullosos de este crecimiento, creemos que los estudiantes de habla hispana merecen más. Por favor, publica tus planes de enseñanza, unidades, evaluaciones, videos instruccionales en las áreas de artes, lenguaje , matemáticas , ciencias , estudios sociales e historia en www.curriki.org/es/ .
  2. ¡Comparte el plan de enseñanza! Si los planes de enseñanza Curriki en español tienen valor para usted, por favor, compártelos con tus compañeros maestros y educadores. Ya sea por correo electrónico, medios de comunicación social, en un blog o en un sitio web, agradecemos tu ayuda para expandir el mensaje.
  3. Voluntario para traducir. Si eres bilingüe, podrías ayudar a hacer crecer la biblioteca de OER en español, ofreciéndote como voluntario para traducir algunos de los más de 256,000 recursos de enseñanza y aprendizaje de inglés de Curriki al español para llegar a más estudiantes de más países. Póngase en contacto con Janet Pinto, Oficial Jefe Académico y Oficial Jefe de Mercadeo de Curriki, para obtener más información.
  4. ¡Donar! Curriki es una organización sin fines de lucro sin dinero para gastar en traducción, pero con su ayuda podríamos contratar a traductores para crear versiones en español de nuestros recursos en inglés de alta calidad. Haga una donación aquí. 

Aquí en Curriki, creemos que ofrecer programas de español es un paso importante para proveer a los maestros, escuelas y padres alrededor del mundo con el apoyo que necesitan para llegar a cada niño y para que los estudiantes accedan a los recursos en su lengua materna. ¡Gracias de antemano por tu ayuda!

Kim Jones es el Presidente del Directorio y Director Ejecutivo de Curriki. Kim es activo en la conducción de las políticas de iniciativas y regularmente aparece como orador honorario sobre el impacto de la tecnología en la educación en influyentes reuniones en todo el mundo. Obtenga más información en Curriki.org.