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By Melinda Sacks
It can seem as though every month is an important college-related milestone once your child reaches junior year in high school. There are certain time periods, though, that can create extra stress for those who are not college-bound. Being aware of such time periods and helping your child prepare for them can relieve some of the pressure.
It's helpful to be sure your child is involved in his own activities during these times. Anything from sports to volunteering provides a different environment where your child can shine without having to report a test score to do so.
Our son found respite at the local elementary school where he has been a classroom volunteer for going on three years. When he doesn't feel connected at his school, he has been able to find his community elsewhere.
Not everyone goes to college, and certainly being a good student is not a prerequisite to being successful and happy. One way to help your child if he is feeling badly about not following his peers to college is to look for examples and role models who have successfully taken a non-college path.
Help your child find examples of successful and famous people with learning and attention problems whose paths were also unusual. Their stories can be can be inspiring and motivating:
You might also find that if you talk to family members you will discover other role models to whom your teen can relate. Our son was impressed to find out his very bright uncle, who runs a thriving print business, never attended college and went to work right out of high school. Another cousin opted out of the college path and instead traveled around the world to help build clean water systems in places such as Africa and South America.
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