By Ella Thomas
It is finally that time of year again. For 10 months I have anxiously sat at my desk and awaited the time when I could trade school for the pool, the chill of the classroom for the heat of the sun. I think you know what I am talking about…
SUMMER BREAK! (I may be exaggerating a bit because school is not all that bad, but I have a point to make.) This summer break is a little different, however, because it is the last one before I start high school. Although I am very excited, I do have some reservations as I am sure nearly every freshman does. Therefore, my goal is to provide 10 key tips to ensure an easier transition.
First, you are not alone. Everyone is typically nervous about their first day. I know this sounds like something you hear a lot, but it is easy to forget. Sometimes it feels like you are the only one who has no idea what they are doing and everyone else has it all figured out, but that’s not true. It’s easy to hide your apprehensions (because everyone does it and that’s what makes it confusing), but remember that everyone feels pretty much the same way you do.
Second, get involved in as many clubs or sports as you can handle (but not too many because over involvement could impact your grades). It is a great way to meet new people in a big unfamiliar school. Of course you have your core group of friends now, but it is very important to know some other people in your new school. Like the old song says, make new friends but keep the old.
Third, get things DONE. It took me a very long time to learn this (and let’s be honest, I still don’t do it 100 percent of the time), but procrastination only makes things harder on yourself. In high school, there will be a lot more assignments, projects, tests, and deadlines and if you don’t tackle them as soon as possible they can pile up and become overwhelming. So make sure you are meeting deadlines and not leaving anything until the last minute.
Fourth, don’t be afraid to ask questions. Sometimes we stop ourselves from raising our hand and asking questions because we get a little shy, or are scared of embarrassing ourselves in front of the class. It will be especially difficult with new teachers, new peers, and a gigantic school to navigate. But, we shouldn’t just keep ourselves from asking questions due to our fears. Truth be told, most of the time someone else may have the same question or concern. You never know what the difference between an “A” or a ‘B” can be!
Fifth, try to be organized. I have heard that it is rare to get a locker near all of your classes, so organization is very important if you are going to have to keep all of your stuff in your backpack. I know that I relied very heavily on my locker to keep things in order. It will take a lot for me to stop just shoving loose papers in my book bag when I am pressed for time. It does give a bad impression to turn in crumbled and torn up papers or spend half of class time searching through your book bag for your assignment.
Sixth, work hard (because now it really counts). The grades you get now will stick with you so make sure you do your best! Don’t make excuses for yourself because you are “trying to adjust” or “too busy”. Grades are very important! I don’t mean to sound like your parents, but its true. There’s no going back now, and these grades may determine your college options and therefore your future! (no pressure)
Seventh, follow the rules. I know this is an obvious one, but you don’t want to mess up your record or reputation for being careless. You never know who will notice! (And now it counts for a lot more than middle school, so think about that!)
Eighth, go to bed earlier. I know I am sooo not ready for having to wake up at the crack of dawn to get to school! I don’t know about you, but it takes me a while to get ready in the mornings! And I know I am the one to say “just one episode won’t hurt” before starting my homework, but I’ll have to stop that in order to get to bed on time! So make sure that you get to bed sooner so that you are ready to wake up refreshed and ready to go!
Ninth, diligence and dedication will pay off in the end! All of your late night studying and hard work will be so worth it when you achieve your dreams! So don’t forget about your future plans, and don’t give up when it gets hard!
And last of all, have fun! You are only going to be a freshman once (well, hopefully) so don’t let your worries weigh you down. Make sure you enjoy yourself as much as possible, but don’t lose sight of your grades and goals!
That’s everything with Ella! (For now…)
Questions? Comments? Suggestions?
Contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org!