GAINING EARLY AWARENESS AND READINESS FOR UNDERGRADUATE PROGRAMS (GEAR UP)

Soap Lake Freshmen and Sophomores take PSAT

Soap Lake HS Freshmen and Sophomores took the PSAT College Entrance Test this fall. Students who take the test are preparing themselves to take the SAT which is the actual college exam for colleges to use when making admission decisions. “Our students take the exam during their 9th, 10th, and 11th grade years in the Fall. When they take the actual SAT test in the Spring of their Junior year, they have seen the practice test three times. GEAR UP supports our students by preparing the students for the test with test-taking skills that will improve their score. “There are a lot of tricks to taking this test” says Site Director, Roger Chamberlain. “There are strategies to use on a multiple choice test that will help their score. Knowing when to guess and when to leave an answer blank will help their score a lot.” GEAR UP also prepares students for the test by providing vocabulary words to Soap Lake English classes. There are also reading strategies that will assist in scoring well on the test.

GEAR UP supports our students in preparing for college work. Preparing them for the SAT exam is only one of the things GEAR UP offers to support Soap Lake students.

Two FAFSA Nights Coming at Soap Lake HS

Soap Lake High School and GEAR UP will hold two FAFSA and Financial Aid Nights in January. All seniors are to be in attendance for information on college financial aid. On January 12, Soap Lake will hold an informational night for FAFSA and college scholarships. A special speaker will be in attendance and answer all questions about financial aid. “We are working with seniors and parents to ensure all seniors have their PIN number by the January 12 meeting” says GEAR UP Site Director, Roger Chamberlain. “Our meeting on the 12th will focus on all financial aid including scholarships. We will also assist anyone who would like to work on the FAFSA in our computer lab.”

January 29th will be focused strictly on completing the FAFSA. Anyone who has not completed it is encouraged to attend. Soap Lake High School has several good resource people who can assist in completion of the online form. GEAR UP’s computer lab will be open for use.

“This is a great opportunity for students and parents to take this big step in college financial assistance. We encourage all to attend.”

Soap Lake GEAR UP Seniors attend National College Fair

Soap Lake HS seniors attended the National College Fair in Spokane on Wednesday, November 5. Nearly every senior attended the fair which features college representatives from all over the country. GEAR UP seniors are now narrowing their college choices and they took advantage of the trip to talk to recruiters and admissions people to help with their decision.

Now is the time for our seniors to begin the application process. Most college application deadlines are after the first of the year but some have deadlines in December. GEAR UP encourages all seniors to get that early start on applications because things start moving really fast after the first of the year. Scholarship applications and FAFSA start early. Our seniors are starting early to avoid that last minute stress that procrastination brings!

Soap Lake Freshmen and Sophomores Look to Future

Freshmen and sophomores at Soap Lake HS are starting the year looking to build on past successes. Math has been a real emphasis at Soap Lake and most of our freshmen find themselves challenged in geometry after passing algebra I in the 8th grade. In addition, most of our sophomores are enrolled in algebra II because of the accelerated math track. GEAR UP has been supporting our students through in class and after school tutoring for years and students are getting the dividends.

Soap Lake is also emphasizing classroom note-taking strategies and organization. Each student is issued a binder, pencil pouch, and dividers to help them with organization. Cornell Notes are emphasized school-wide now as all teachers are committed to expanding these strategies throughout the school. Some of our new high school students initially find these strategies more work but our students that have been using them for years know that they work and eventually save them a lot of effort.

Our freshmen and sophomores also have some events to look forward to such as college visits and the National College Fair in November. GEAR UP is ready to help our students be a success!

Senior Parent Night September 23 in Soap Lake

September 23rd is Senior Parent Night in Soap Lake and all seniors should attend with at least one parent. Parents and students will be able to ask questions of the administration, counselor, or GEAR UP staff. Presentations will be made by the counselor and GEAR UP staff for all those who attend.

In addition to senior projects and graduation requirements, GEAR UP will be presenting information on college applications, scholarships and FAFSA. All parents and students will receive valuable information on all of these topics and they will leave the meeting with a valuable timeline for their seniors. These deadlines are important to know because scholarships and college applications all have different deadlines that they will need to know in a timely manner.

Seniors bring your parents and parents bring your students to this important first meeting of the year for seniors!

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