As you prepare for a new school year (and maybe even a new school), here are some simple tips to calm any jitters and help you rock this exciting new adventure!
1. Check out the school before it starts.
Attend orientation if your school offers it. It’s a great chance to explore the campus and get your schedule for the upcoming year. If you have any older friends or siblings, ask them to show you around!
2. Get involved.
Many clubs hold meetings in the first month of school, and there might even be a club fair where you can see all the student organizations available. Get involved in clubs or sports that interest you. You’ll meet new people who share your interests!
3. Pick fun electives.
If your school offers electives like music, art, photography, creative writing, carpentry, or computer science, pick one or a couple that interest you and don’t feel too overwhelming. Start by sprinkling these classes between your core classes (math, science, English, history, and world language) before you start adding more challenging electives later in high school.
4. Show up to class.
First impressions matter, and attendance counts. Some schools even include your absences on your transcript. Showing up to class also means you won’t miss quizzes and tests that could affect your grades.
5. Do your best.
Even though most people think junior and senior years of high school are the most important, all high school grades count toward your GPA! College might not be on your radar yet, but you may consider it in a few years. You don’t want your grades from early high school to haunt your college applications!
6. Ask questions in class.
Half your class probably has the same question as you but are too afraid to ask. Your peers will be grateful you have the nerve to raise your hand and ask. Asking questions also shows your teachers that you are engaging with the lesson!
7. Learn to manage your time.
If you struggle to balance school work and extracurriculars, don’t worry, time management is a skill you can learn. Get started by checking out these 10 time management tips.
8. Write down all of your assignments.
Use a planner (paper or online) to start writing down your assignments. Log deadlines into your reminders on your phone. Choose an organizational style you like most, and it will be easier to stick with it!
9. Learn to speak up for yourself.
When you were younger, the adults in your life probably took care of most of your challenging situations. Now that you’re older, your teachers expect you to come directly to them with your concerns. If you’re having trouble in class, dealing with a bully, or experiencing challenges at home, don’t be afraid to talk privately with your teachers or school counselors.
10. Do your homework.
Your homework is your responsibility. Doing your homework will help reinforce everything you’re learning in class. If you forget your homework or have an emergency, talk to your teacher right away. Most teachers will give you partial points for turning in late assignments. Ask for extra credit opportunities to help raise your grade!