As a continuation of the original Welcome thread (if you haven't gone there, go there fist) I think we need a separate introduction thread for highschoolers.
Who: As a demographic, I think that we can probably be characterized by:
1. Our newness to LW.
2. Our uncertainty about which college or career to choose.
3. (if we are in a public school) Looking for ways to game the system (because we're not learning much in it).
4. Our potential to make a huge impact (the best advantage is an early start).
5. An lack of face to face interaction with intellectual people.
Why: I can think of several things this could help highschoolers with.
1. See where you stack up compared to others your age (We're probably all big fish in small ponds. At least I am. Let's get an idea of what the big pond is like).
2. Make friends with people like you.
3. Consider college and career ideas you hadn't considered before.
4. Perhaps find people to apply with for the Thiel Fellowship.
5. Find a chavruta to go through the sequences with you.
What: Tell us the following:
1. How old/what year are you?
2. How have you tried to enhance your education beyond what's normally offered at schools?
3. How many rationalist/philosophical people are at your school/family?
4. What careers/schools are you considering?
5. Are you going to apply for a Thiel Fellowship?
6. EDIT: link to your old "introduce yourself" post.
If you're not in highschool, tell us what you would have told your old highschool self.
Hello! I'm Allison, 16, a Junior in high school.
Yes, I've tried to enhance my education.. I mean, my GPA is 3.6, so I don't think I fit in with the LessWrong community very well. I'm not gifted with a natural born intelligence. I'm not saying I'm stupid, I'm just saying I'm not a genius and have to work pretty hard what comes easily to others. I struggle in math at school, despite being interested in it. I'm a thespian, so I'm fairly right-brained. But even though school is challenging for me, I also sometimes find it boring. And as I like learning, but not learning boring things, I've turned to the Internet for knowledge. This Christmas, I'm getting some textbooks found on the LessWrong textbook recommendation page. I try to independently study quantum mechanics (albeit largely unsuccessfully), philosophy, and probability theory.
Heh. Well, my family, none. They're devoutly religious. I'm not. They don't know... I'm sort of a closet atheist. And yes, I know I probably shouldn't care what other people think of me, and just tell my family that I'm not religious. But I do care. So for now, I'm keeping silent. For the longest time, because I've been raised in a highly religious e
As for the other things yo... (read more)
It should probably be the other way around: once he gets better epistemic tools, which doesn't require not being a Catholic, he'll probably cease being a Catholic. Confronting religion directly seems significantly counterproductive if training in rationality is a feasible plan.
And if you don't care about college, make sure that you actually have a realistic plan for what you'll be doing after high school. There are all kinds of near-far/hyperbolic discounting/wishful thinking/self-deception -related issues where you might go from thinking "oh, college isn't really important" when you're starting high school and then realize "oh, but I don't actually have any realistic plan for no-college" near the end of high school, when the decision of what to do next actually becomes relevant.
Personally, the farther off I was from the point where I'd actually need to find a job, the more vague and ill-thought my plans for what I'd do at that point were. I went from "I'll just take whatever courses seem easy and interesting" in early high school, to "oh crap all the interesting career paths involve math which I haven't studied much" in late high school, to "I'll major in cognitive science and figure out some job later on" in early college, to "getting a job with just a cogsci degree is actually pretty hard, I'll switch my major to compu... (read more)
I was lucky in that my high school had a program that wasn't a totally miserable waste of my time, but even in there most of the vaguely ambitious kids become ambitious kids at different times, get lonely, and fizzle out.
Primates need friends.
Would anyone be interested in a weekly or biweekly Google+ hangout? I'd set one up if like, 3 people felt like joining.
Edit: So we're doing this. Any preferences on days?
Also, please join this group: http://groups.google.com/group/lesswrong-highschool?hl=en
My name is Matt, Graduated 1.5 years ago.
I have always studied my own interests and tend not to pay to close attention to what my teachers were asking the class. this often forces them to ask me questions just as often as I question them which usually sets us up as having some kind of discourse which leads to mentor-friendship. I quickly learned if the appearance of your intellect is large then you can usually form a friendly relationship with your teachers and they wont fail you if you put in a modicum of effort. I never really worried about my GPA in high-school and carried an SAT study book around about a week before my exam to force myself to study and absorb some of the carbon atoms through diffusion while I slept on the book. Somehow I got a good score and ended up at a nice cost effective CSU that people tell me is one of the best in the state. In college my GPA has been a good letter grade or so higher than high school but it feels like I'm doing a ton less work so I just applied for a few transfers to top tier schools because being lazy and getting accepted to good schools is what currently keeps my family supplying me with funds. Eliezer was the first writer to ever dr
Er, I'm not new, but I assume this is for high schoolers regardless of how long they've been on here? That seems most convenient, at least.
I graduated about a week ago, but I'm in Australia, so I'm going to sneak in here anyway.
I'm 17. I graduated year 12 last week.
To enrich myself, I chose to do the International Baccalaureate (IB), which is an international curriculum far more rigorous than the Queensland one. That was a great decision. I also attended the National Youth Science Forum, an event for Australian high school students. This was the most amazing fortnight of my life: the ridiculous level of intelligence of the participants made it incredibly entertaining.
My dad's fairly rat
At risk of other-optimizing:
How To Get The Most Out of High School
Take as many AP tests as you can. (in the U.S., at least. I'm not sure what the international equivalent is). Take AP tests even in subjects you haven't taken in school. You get credits towards college, it looks impressive on a college resume, and you get to go at your own pace. Specifically, microeconomics is very easy to teach yourself and very useful.
Take as many science and math classes as you possibly can. If your school limits you to one or two science classes simultaneously, go and ... (read more)
1) I'm a senior in high school in the USA; I'm 17.
2) Outside of school, I've done summer programs, the most recent one was studying creative writing at the California State Summer School of the Arts (also known as CSSSA)- we board down in Valencia for four weeks and work with professional writers. If anyone's interested in writing, it's an amazing program. There's a math and science equivalent- COSMOS, which is supposed to be pretty good. I'd probably be going to that next summer if I hadn't got a job. At school, I've been taking as many APs as are all... (read more)
1) I'm 16, a sophomore in high school.
2) I thought that LW counted as enhancing my education, so a lot of that (good for disguised procrastination, but procrastination can be productive!) Also I go to a Music and Arts academy each weekend, where I learn music theory/history and volunteer. In the summer I want to volunteer for a professor at UCSB doing independent research, so I'm working on contacting a few. Besides that, nothing college application-noteworthy. In high school: I'm taking 3 AP classes and English 110 this year. In the summer I'll take tw... (read more)
17, senior year in a German high school.
Currently taking the ml and ai classes. I also participated (and will continue to do so) in various camps and courses, for example about physics. Moreover, I very successfully participate(d) in competitions about natural sciences ("very successfully" means twice on a national level).
I know about a few people at school with this sort of "spirit" though none of them reads lw.
I'm not quite certain, although it'll probably be something in the natural/comp science range.
Don't have one.
Nice idea. Be careful that "3. (if we are in a public school) Looking for ways to game the system (because we're not learning much in it)." is quite US-specific. Both in the way to game the system (since systems are very different from place to place), and in the relative quality of public/private schools (and the absolute quality of public ones). It may have changed since my time (almost 15 years already... time flies fast) but French public high-school used to be interesting places in which you could learn a lot if you wanted to.
Why are so few people interested in applying for the Thiel scholarshp? I feel that it's obviously more educational than going to school. Are you so afraid of not getting it that you don't bother applying?
1.Hello, I'm Anna Zhang, a high school freshman and a thirteen year old. I'm sort of new to rationality, and only started on this site half a month ago. It's nice to meet everyone.
Message me about joining the facebook group.
Also, why isn't the linking syntax the same for comments as articles?