Looking back to my first day of high school I remember being dazed in the chaos that ensues during the first week. Now that I am going into grade 12, grade 9 seems insignificant. However, at the time, I was so stressed during my first few days. This post will go through some important tips I wish I knew for the first few days of high school.

Prepare

High school is a big transition. There is a lot of vital changes that will pester you in grade 9. Though preparation may seem like an obvious tip for school, simple things like knowing where your classes are or what bus route to take in the morning can make a big difference in the first days of school. During the first week, I would recommend looking at your school’s layout from an image online or from one in the student planner. Knowing how to get from class to class will become important, as you do not want to be late for any tests or exams. Next, figure out how you can switch courses during the first couple weeks of school. Switching courses is becoming more relevant as schools shift to a semester system; many classes you have signed up for may not fit your timetable and switching them will become a necessity. Many high schools run course selection through the guidance department, so knowing who your guidance counsellor is and how you can book an appointment will be helpful. As well, throughout the first day of class find out what each teacher recommends in terms of supplies. Classes in high school will require a different subset of materials, so make sure to gather supplies and come to class prepared. Lastly, know that high school is not like its depiction in movies or TV. High school is hard work, and it can be stressful, but there are some amazing aspects of every school, know that every day is not going to be fun.

Be Social

During the first week of grade 9, there are usually some social events, designed to get freshmen excited for school and become comfortable with the school’s environment. Make sure to go to these events and try to socialize with new people. Even if you do not know many students, you will find that during the first few weeks of school you will meet people that could be your friends for the rest of high school. Also, these events are a lot of fun, even after grade 9 the committee for these events are impossible to get onto because so many students want to be a part of the thrill. As well, I know that when I was in grade 9 I found a lot of older students intimidating, but in high school a year or two difference is just that. Some of my closest friends now are older or younger than me and I learned to have a wide range of friends is important. Generally, the first few days might seem scary, but you will familiarize yourself and learn to appreciate certain aspects of high school.

Get Involved

Getting involved in grade 9 is by far the best school year to do so. You can test out clubs, events, and teams and see if it would be something you would want to be a part in future years. Some of the best parts of high school are the friendships built in teams or the trips with your favourite classes or clubs. Either way, trying new things and experiencing clubs and teams with others is a great use of your time at high school and will make your years so much more enjoyable. At many schools, there are so many different activities that you are bound to find a few that you will really enjoy. Grade 9 might seem like a huge step, but know that in the grand scheme of things it is not a huge deal. Try not to stress out too much and instead make the most of your first year in high school by coming in prepared, being social, and getting involved early on.

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