: November 20, 2018 Posted by: Maureen Comments: 0

By Maureen Santini © Copyright. All Rights Reserved.

This is Chapter 2 in Write Your Life Story for Posterity. You’ve just written about your first decade of life according to the decade-by-decade method. Congratulations on beginning this journey. Let’s keep going.

The second decade of life begins in childhood and ends in adulthood. The ages 10 through 19 are formative ones, spanning middle school, high school, and post high school.

The simplest way to cover all this territory is chronological. Divide the decade into specific years and write everything you recall about each year. For instance, if you were born in 1960, you were 10 years old in 1970. Begin with your 10th birthday.

Middle School

In most cases, your first decade ended with fourth grade. Begin writing about your second decade with the fifth grade or wherever you were at the age of 10. For each grade, write as much as you recall about relevant topics including:

  • The name of the school, city and state, important teachers, coaches, classmates, events. The type of school – public, private, religious, home.
  • Your home address, city, and state.
  • Your main school activities, class subjects, projects, and interests. Include highlights of each grade such as things that were especially fun, rewarding, or challenging.
  • Your main activities outside of school including playmates, home life, religion, games, sports, outdoor activities, television, movies, music, fashion, dreams, challenges. Write in depth about topics of greatest significance.
  • Your awareness of current events in your town, state, nation, or internationally. Be specific.

High School

Most of us were about 14 years old as freshmen and about 18 at graduation, although not everyone was in school during these years. For each year from 14 to 18, write about the main preoccupations and activities in your life.

  • If you were in school, write the name of the school, city, and state, and the type of school. Include relevant facts about the school itself.
  • Your home residence street address, city, and state. Names and relationships of others in your household.
  • Those who had the most influence in your life during this time including teachers, classmates, coaches, family members, friends, and others.
  • Your major interests and activities, such as trips, sports, class subjects. Describe yourself as a student. If you were not a student, explain how you occupied your time.
  • Your main interests outside of school such as friends, home life, religion, games, television, sports, movies, music, clothes. Describe interests and skills you developed during this time.
  • Your health and preoccupations during this time.
  • Your awareness of current events in your town, state, and nation. Explain why specific events piqued your interest or concern.
  • Most of us began driving around age 16 and became legal adults at age 18. Write about your experiences driving, voting, drinking if applicable, and dealing with peer pressure and family expectations.
  • Relate your status as a student, including whether you graduated and whether you were working during high school.

Post High School

After high school you may have gone to college or vocational school, entered the job market, joined the military, traveled, or just hung out. Some of you may have married and had children.

Write in detail about as many of the following as apply to your life:

  • College
  • Vocational school
  • Military
  • Job / Career
  • Moving away from home for the first time
  • Dating, marriage, and children
  • Travel

For each category, write the basic facts, dates, and addresses: where and when you were in college, vocational school, the military and/or the job market. Write about your areas of study in college, your vocational and/or military training. Write about your first jobs or first travels. Describe your skills and abilities.

Describe gratitude or regret for opportunities you took advantage of, or didn’t. Explain factors that, at the time, seemed to impel you in one direction or another.

Address the status of your private life, such as whether you were in a relationship or married with or without children. Describe your private and family life in detail.

In addition to the categories above, write about additional challenges, events or stresses that had a major impact on your life during this decade, including your health and welfare and that of your family and friends.

Now that you’ve jogged your memory, new insights are likely to arise. Keep adding to each chapter as they do.

Get ready to start writing about your third decade

Tell us about your writing experience so far in the comments section on this website. Feel free to share these posts to encourage others to write their own stories.

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Note: This post has been updated from the original.