If There Were A Third Floor, There Wouldn’t Be A Pool On It



It’s that time of year again!

The transition from middle school to high school is notorious for being overwhelming for students. It is a time when everything you were comfortable with in middle school is turned upside down. However, the truth is that you are over prepared to be successful in high school. Sure, you’ll get lost trying to find your classes on the first day. So what! Everyone inevitably does. With the right attitude, high school will be some of the best years of your life and in the blink of an eye, you’ll be walking across the stage in a cap and gown getting your diploma.

The one thing you can’t be afraid of going into high school is change. Best friends are going to drift, lunch tables from middle school are going to be irrelevant, and “inseparable” friend groups are going to break apart. There are three times more of you than there were last year and the label of what town you’re from will become insignificant faster than you’d think. It becomes so much easier when you embrace your identity as a Nashoba student instead of segregating lunch tables by town. Talk to new people and make new friends. It won’t hurt to talk to the person sitting next to you in class, I promise. 

While embracing change and being open-minded, it is important to remember that you are never alone in what you are experiencing. Part of maturity is developing personal independence and integrity. Never feel the need to follow a group or crowd blindly. There is always someone in a similar situation, the hardest part is just finding that person or group of people.

That being said, there are many opportunities to get involved in school activities. Joining teams and clubs is a great way to make friends with peers who have similar interests and talents. Take advantage of the activity fair at the beginning of the year. All clubs are represented in the courtyard and are all looking for more members. There is almost always a club that you will be interested in to some extent but if there isn’t, you can always find a group of people and a faculty advisor and start a new one! 

Sports try-outs are much more competitive than in middle school, but don’t let that deter you from trying out. The worst thing you can do with school athletics is give up because a try-out didn’t go your way. Coaches need to think of the team as a whole as opposed to individual performance, so if you weren’t the best fit for a certain team, that doesn’t mean you won’t be next year with continued practice and demonstrated commitment to the program.

Another way to get involved in the school is attending dances and other school functions. The Spring Fling dance is the biggest and most highly attended school event for freshmen and sophomores and is a great opportunity to socialize with new people. 

Academically, high school definitely gives you more opportunities to challenge yourself. Most classes now have levels, which make for a different classroom setting from what you were used to in middle school. It is important to manage your course load and make sure it is reasonable. It is also important to take classes that challenge you, but to choose classes that you know you can excel in with not only the other classes you’re taking, but the activities you participate in.

Choosing the right classes sets up your year for academic success. However, if you are in a class you feel is too challenging or overwhelming with your other classes, you do have the option to drop to a different level that you feel will better suit you. Don’t be afraid to talk to your teacher if you are struggling in any way, whether with understanding a concept or managing workload.

Teachers are humans too (I know, shocking) and will always help to the best of their ability. There are also many electives to choose from and, as your schedule frees up in higher grades, you will have more options. Make sure to check the Program of Studies and ask teachers and guidance counselors about elective opportunities when choosing classes. 

Freshman year is a time of change for all students entering high school and it is important to navigate that transition with ease. Time management and good mental health are as essential to success as studying. As long as you make the right decisions, seek help when needed, and take advice with an open mind, there is no doubt that the next four years will be an overwhelmingly positive experience.

Never be afraid to ask questions and advocate for yourself to those who can help. Respectfulness, inclusiveness, and kindness always matter and can only help in your journey through the next four years.  Oh, and of course, make sure to have fun!