If you are a high school senior, there are probably only two things on your mind right now: summer and college. We've been told countless times before that these are the best years of our lives. If that's really true, then why live in the future? Pull yourself out of your summer day dreams for just five minutes and check out what I think are the top six things that you should do before your high school years are over.
Cherish your yearbook
A yearbook is worth a thousand words. A yearbook is also a very easy way to reminisce on your high school memories. Plus, the yearbook staff put in a lot of hard work to make your yearbook as memorable and special as possible. Later in life you might regret not buying your senior yearbook. If you don't want to spend money to purchase a yearbook, I recommend gathering a bunch of pictures of you and your friends throughout the past four years and creating a scrapbook that you can save as a special keepsake.
Go to prom
Senior prom is notoriously known as the best dance in all of your high school experience. Whether you have that dream date or have chosen to fly solo, you're sure to have a fun and unforgettable time dancing the night away with your friends and classmates. If your prom has already passed or if dances are "so not your thing," consider attending your senior trip or grad night. These are events that are usually exclusively for seniors, and because of this it will be a lot easier to bond with your classmates on a more personal level.
Hang out with family and friends
It might be exciting or even scary to hear, but you are growing up. Sooner or later you will be moving out of your parents' house and entering the adult world. Maybe you're going to college thousands of miles away from your family and friends, like I am, or maybe your friends will be the ones moving away. Whatever the case, you are bound to miss your family and friends very much, so make sure you hang out with them equally. It might be fun to party with your high school friends but don't forget about the ones who love you and will miss you the most: your family. You don't want to leave for college in the fall and regret not taking time to show your loved ones how much they really mean to you.
Write letters to favorite teachers
Now that you've taken time to appreciate your friends and family, don't forget about your teachers! Write a thank-you note to the teacher who wrote your college recommendation letter or write one to the librarian who always helped you check out books. Make sure you tell your social studies teacher how much they've inspired you to major in history, or tell your calculus teacher that they given you a passion for math. It's important to take time to thank the faculty and staff of your school because they work incredibly hard to make sure you are prepared for your future. Your educators would love to know how big of an impact they've had on your high school experience. A hand-written letter is a very touching gesture and will leave your recipients something positive to remember you by.
You are graduating from high school -- this means that you are about to start a new chapter in your life. Why close the current chapter on a negative note? Maybe you had a falling out with your best friend from elementary school, or perhaps you and an ex never really made up. You don't want to still be holding grudges when you're walking down the graduation aisle. Be the bigger person and make the first move towards healing a broken friendship. Approach the person you want to make amends with so you can graduate grudge-free!
Show some school spirit
Be an energetic alum and show your school spirit! The relationship between you and your school might be a love-hate one, but if you take a step back and realize how far you've come since freshman year, ou might find yourself being a little more grateful than resentful. Take advantage of your school's end-of-the-year rallies, spirit weeks and sports games. Put on your school colors and cheer for the Braves (or Lions, or Knights or whoever your school mascot is) one more time! If you do this, graduating will be a lot more sentimental and meaningful. Plus, you'll be able to look back on your high school years and say, "Yeah, I was the one dancing like crazy during the spring rally."
You should also ace a test, fail a test, learn how to do laundry, confess your feelings to a crush and maybe even break a stereotype... The possibilities are endless! Don't forget to take full advantage of the opportunities that are at your feet. Follow this list to make your senior year and high school experience one to truly remember. Be able to stand with your classmates at graduation with no regrets or disappointments. I know that I will be checking each activity off this list before I graduate in just under a month. It's not too late to make your senior year the best year ever, and to the classes of 2012, I dedicate my cap-throwing to you.
Follow Cassidy Hopkins on Twitter: www.twitter.com/cassidyjhopkins