I’m reading a great book The Time Paradox: The New Psychology of Time That Will Change Your Life.
There are numerous subtleties and nuances that make the following just a blunt force statement but nonetheless:
Most high school students are present oriented hedonists (enjoying themselves in the present) but those that are most successful balance that natural orientation with a greater future orientation.
This made me recall a story from a few years back: “My son might think about what he’s doing on Friday.” Mrs. Abernon laughed as she discussed her junior age son heading into Guilford High School. “He’s not a bad student but he just does what’s needed and then he’s off with his friends or playing video games. Whenever I want to talk about college or the future, he either blows me off or tells me don’t worry about it. But he is a high school junior and I told him that getting into UCONN would be great but he needs higher scores than his PSATs. That was how I convinced Liam to take your class.”
Liam came to our fall SAT class with that vacant look of “why am I in a classroom in Madison on a Sunday? During my opening lecture in SAT class, I discuss the future in ways that most students either haven’t heard or haven’t paid attention to before. I don’t recall noticing that Liam had paid more attention than any other student during this part of class. But,
But, something must have clicked. When he came home, he asked his mom if they could discuss visiting college. Mrs. Abernon immediately e-mailed me to express her delight. “I hope his SAT scores go up. But just making him think about the future made the course worth every penny.”