Monthly Archives: August 2014

Back to School Advice from Martin Luther King, Jr.

What is your life’s blueprint? How do you make it? What are your hopes and dreams? How will you make them come true?

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Student Futures wishes every student a successful and memorable school year with little stress and a lot of intrigue. As you embark on another chapter in your academic career please think about your goals for the 2014-2015 school year. What do you want for yourself? How will you achieve it? Who’s help do you need?

In the Academic Coaching program goals are referred to as “well-formed outcomes.” Rather  than stating your goal is to get all A’s this year. A well-formed outcome may look more like this: I will take organized notes and review them each night. A well-formed outcome is positive as well as specific and measurable. Try it out! Make three well-formed outcomes to start your school year. Write them down and tape them to your locker or bathroom mirror. Put them up somewhere that you will see them every day.

Before you go off making your well-formed outcomes read this inspiring speech made by Martin Luther King, Jr.. He has some important advice to teens and even though he wrote it 67 years ago, his message is timeless. Read on……

What is Your Life’s Blueprint? By: Martin Luther King, Jr.

I want to ask you a question, and that is: What is in your life’s blueprint? This is a most important and crucial period in your lives. For what you do now and what you decide now at this age may well determine which way your life shall go. Whenever a building is constructed , you usually have an architect who draws a blueprint, and that blueprint serves as the guide for those who are to build the building. A building is not well erected without a good, sound, and solid blueprint.

Now, each of you is in the process of building the structure of your lives, and the question is whether you have a proper, a solid, and a sound blueprint.

I want to suggest some of the things that should be in your life’s blueprint. Number one in your life’s blueprint should be a deep belief in your own dignity, your own worth, and your own somebodiness. Don’t allow anybody to make your feel that you are nobody. Always feel that you count. Always feel that you have worth, and always feel that your life has ultimate significance. Now, that means that you should not be ashamed of your color.  You know, it’s very unfortunate that in so many instances, our society has placed a stigma on the Negro’s color.

Secondly, in your life’s blueprint, you must have as the basic principle the determination to achieve excellence in your various fields of endeavor. You’re going to be deciding as the years unfold what you will do in life—what your life’s work will be. Once you have decided what it will be, set out to do it, and to do it well.

And I say to you, my young friends, that doors are opening to each of you—doors of opportunities that were not open to your mothers and to your fathers—and the great challenge facing you is to be ready to enter these doors as they open.

Ralph Waldo Emerson, the great essayist, said in a lecture in 1871 that if a man can write a better book or preach a better sermon or make a better mousetrap than his neighbor, even if he builds his house in the woods, the world will make a beaten path to his door.

That hasn’t always been true—but it will become increasingly true—but it will become increasingly true, and so I would urge you to study hard, to burn the midnight oil; I would say to you, don’t drop out of school. I understand all of the sociological reasons why we often drop out of school, but I urge you in spite of your economic plight, in spite of the situation that you’re forced to live—stay in school.

And when you discover what you are going to be in your life, set out to do it as if God Almighty called you at this particular moment in history to do it. Do that job so well that a the living, the dead, or the unborn couldn’t do it any better.

If it falls your lot to be a street sweeper, sweep streets like Michelangelo painted pictures.  Sweep streets like Beethoven composed music.  Sweep streets like Shakespeare wrote poetry.  Sweep streets so well that all the hosts of heaven and earth will have to pause and say: Here lived a great street sweeper.

IF you can’t be a pine on the top of the hill, be a shrub in the valley. But be the best little shrub on the side of the hill.  For it isn’t by size that you win or you fail.  Be the best of whatever you are.

Finally, in your life’s blueprint, there must be a commitment to the eternal principles of beauty, love, and justice. Don’t allow anybody to pull you so low as to make you hate them.  Don’t allow anybody to cause you to lose your self-respect to the point that you do not struggle for justice.  However young you are, you have a responsibility to seek to make life better for everybody. And so you must be involved in the struggle for freedom and justice.

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Go Forth……

Make your personalized blueprint for success. Start by making well-formed outcomes. If you are not sure where to start or how to put your words together, remember that Student Futures can help. We want to help you succeed! If school is stressful and you feel overwhelmed, don’t worry. Please contact Student Futures to find out how academic coaching can meet your needs. Read more about what we do by clicking here. Student Futures serves students in Jacksonville, FL and surrounding areas.

Keep smiling and reaching for the stars!

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Back to School 2014

 

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Photo Credit: https: https://www.flickr.com/photos/cali4beach/

It’s that time again!

Hopefully, you have had a fun and relaxing summer where you learned a lot. Now, it is time to switch gears!  Whether you go to public or private school, attend virtual school, or are homeschooled everyone has many things to do to get ready for the 2014-2015 school year.

Today is the beginning of Florida’s tax free holiday weekend. Yay! What is on your shopping list? Click HERE to see Duval County Public School’s shopping list for K-8. For high school lists go to the school’s website. On Saturday, August 2nd, Duval County Public Schools is hosting Back to School Fest at the Jacksonville Fairgrounds from 9am-noon. Lots of cool stuff happening there for parents and students! This year is Duval County Public School’s 150th anniversary. Wow! Let’s start this year strong!

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The Top Item on Your List

An organized student is a successful student. A successful student is a happy student.

Buying a planner is essential to having a successful school year. You can make your own on the computer for free or stores have tons of affordable planners for less than $20. For those of you that are tech savvy check out the My Study Life app. Check out our Pinterest Time Management board for cool stuff by clicking HERE. I know for most students using a planner seems like a chore or another assignment. Mastering how to use a planner will help you be successful not only in high school and middle school, but in college and beyond.

How can parents motivate students to utilize the planner? Buy or create a planner that suits your student. Have the student make it their own by using stickers, or drawing something unique. If students are allowed to personalize it then they will be more likely to take ownership of it. Create a planner routine with your student. Check in each night and review the planner together. Keep a planner yourself. If you can show your student how you use a planner too then, they will be motivated to use one themselves.

TIPS FOR STUDENTS

– Keep the planner accessible! Most students don’t use the planner because it is never at their fingertips when they need it.

– Write fast! In order to do this use texting language or abbreviations.

– Never be dependent on your memory! We all have tons of things to do. You can’t be expected to memorize it all.

– Keep a pen in the binding

– Mark your current page with a small binder clip.

Here’s to new beginnings! Student Futures wants to help you as you start the new school year. We provide academic coaching services that motivate and inspire students to succeed. Learn more about what we do by clicking HERE. If you know a student who needs some help starting the year off right then contact Student Futures today for an initial consultation.  We want to help you on your road to success!

Keep smiling and reaching for the stars!

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