1. Find out about the new courses: If you know where you or your child is going the next school year, you can request a syllabus from the school or teacher in order to prepare for the course. If the course description sounds like a foreign language, than the class will probably be challenging for the student on the first few days and it will be hard to keep up. Start researching the new terms, reviewing notes from last year's classes, or talking to other students about their impressions and experiences.
2. Read the assigned books and make notes to remember the books when they are discussed in the classroom, weeks or months later. In fact, skim the books the week before school starts. Read some extra books that were not necessary, but are the appropriate grade level or equivalent in scope or topic.
3. Get back into the study habits: regular bedtime, early rise, do intellectual things from 8-2 with time limits: read for an hour, five minutes of Facebook (if you are 18), watch...
I have a student who needs to take a test to enter a school, and many of the points he needs comes from the vocabulary portion of the test. It is very hard to study for these tests one-on-one with a tutor, even multiple times a week. The student needs to focus his or her energies to becoming a full-time reader. In fact, if the student has not been an active reader all of his or her life, now is the time for them to start, when they need to demonstrate that they understand the subtle variations between words to pick out the correct answer to synonym and analogy questions. Please, kids, read now, read often, and read for awhile.
I finally got my first student last week. His mother would like him score higher on the SAT, which is a week from Saturday. She is asking me to work with her son more often than he would like to meet with me, as he is on vacation this week. She also requested that I work with him on SAT English. I'll do the best I can there, but I think I'll have to focus on math as we are down to the last nine days.