Getting ready for college doesn't have to wait until middle or high school. Elementary school students are thinking about their futures with creative activities that help visualize career aspirations and the steps they will have to take to achieve success. Sandy Grade School Principal Rachael George summed it up:

We wanted to foster a college going culture at the  elementary level as the foundation for future educational years starts now.

Sandy Grade School recently hosted its first ever College Week where students of all grades had the opportunity to learn, plan, explore, and discuss future plans involving high school graduation, college, and other post-secondary opportunities. Teachers could choose from a variety of activities for each day of the week, including virtual field trips to college campuses and sharing their own college experiences with students. "We had a strong need," said George. "We did a quick inventory of kids and their plans for college or post secondary plans at the start of the year and it was hit or miss."

College acrostic poem

Future laser technician
Photos via Oregon Trail School District


Similarly, Lowell Elementary School had a variety of activities for students as part of their district's College Application Week in November. Counselor Abbey Rius led all grades in a college-themed door decorating contest and had students complete a Picture Me With A College Degree worksheet which was displayed on bulletin boards and sent home to parents.

UO-OSU decorated door

Picture me with a college degree

For more elementary school resources, see NELA's I'm Going to College activity book.