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8th Grade

Now that you are in 8th grade, you are about to make the jump to high school. This is a great time to make sure you are ready to succeed when you get there. Here are some steps to help you stay on track:

Work hard in school.

  • Do your best every day in your classes and try to get good grades.
  • Explore options for high school. (DCPS students)
  • Plan your courses for high school. Talk to your school counselor to make sure the courses you choose keep you on track for graduation and prepare you for college. Plan to use your electives to explore your interests. (DCPS students)
  • Find out about advanced classes you might be able to take in high school, such as Advanced Placement, International Baccalaureate, and dual credit, which can help you get started early on college credit. Make sure you know what courses you have to take ahead of time (also known as prerequisites) to be able to enroll in these advanced classes.
  • If you haven’t already, take a learning style assessment, which will identify how you learn new information best. (DCPS students | other students)

Prepare for college.

  • Explore colleges online or visit colleges in the DC area. You and your family can drop by any time to get a feel for the campus. (DCPS students | other students)
  • Keep a list of at least one teacher or another adult whom you would ask for a recommendation letter. (DCPS students)
  • Save an example of good work that you did in class this year. (DCPS students)
  • Try to save some money for college. If you can, attend programs about how to pay for college (your school counselor or college access provider can hook you up).
  • If you don’t have a Social Security number, you can request one online. You will need it for financial aid and job applications.

Explore careers.

  • Think about what you like to do and find out what areas of work — as well as specific careers within those areas — suit your interests. (DCPS students | other students)
  • Find out more about additional careers that might interest you and what kinds of skills and education you need for those jobs. (DCPS students | other students)

Get involved.

  • Volunteer in your community, play sports, or join clubs. Getting involved will help you explore your interests and discover new things that you like to do. Plus, many scholarships require students to demonstrate a history of community service.
  • Keep a list of your extracurricular activities as well as any awards or recognition you receive — you will need this information for college applications and for many financial aid opportunities.
  • Talk to your family, teachers, and other adults about your plans so they can help you stay on track!

( 5 Votes )



Valeria graduated from Wilson and wants to be a diplomat ... view video (0:47)


Math is an important skill you will need in the future, so you should plan to take as much as possible.