Some time ago I slipped a college directory into the car. My thinking: when we are on long drives, going through different states, we can read about colleges located in the areas we're driving through. Just a no-pressure way to get a sophomore to start thinking about the kinds of schools that might appeal. It is, right now, just a game, pre-PSAT, pre-results from the academically challenging year coming up.
But even games can reveal some truths. On a 10-hour drive back from a camping trip in Maine, I would ask what colleges the teen wanted to hear about then read the descriptions from the Fiske directory.
What we learned is that right now our teen seems more interested in an urban setting and she is already beginning to clarify her thinking on what her academic interests might be.
It's a time of dreams and unlimited horizons. Reality will set in soon enough.