How to Transition From Elementary School to High School

If you thought going from elementary school to middle school was big, then high school will be huge for you. But it can be a fun and pretty easy experience if you do several things.


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    Be excited! High school is a great experience that you can only do once, so be prepared for fun! If you have any friends who are upperclassmen, connect with them so you'll see familiar faces on the first day of school.
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    Pay attention at orientation. You might learn some of the school's traditions, rules, and staff. You should also get used to the size and feel of the school. However, if you're feeling uncomfortable, sit with some old middle school friends or talk with a guidance counsellor. Sharing problems will help ease the stress.
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    On the first day, meet up with old friends. Or, if you are at a totally new school where you know no one, try asking people about their interests, and eventually you'll be friends.
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    Don't be late to class. Your teachers will have a higher expectation of you than in eighth grade, but they'll be a little easier the first or second week. Also, you'll want to make a great first impression.
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    Try to act like you belong, but don't overdo it. Watching 10th graders and doing what they do is a good start, but don't try to fit in rudely, by pretending to like things you really don't like, just to be popular. Hang around people who can give info, as to what is acceptable for a freshmen to do.
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    If your school has a big-brothers/big-sisters policy where freshmen are paired with seniors, make use of it. Ask your big brother/sister questions and listen to the answers.
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    Don't offend the seniors. For example, if they have a business on selling stuff at lockers, don't start selling stuff out of your locker. They will feel like you're mocking them, so don't try to copy seniors. Let them be who they want to be, they're graduating.
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    Try a lot of clubs and activities, but not every one of them. There will be a wider range of things to do in high school, besides your academics, so pick 1-2 clubs and establish yourself. But don't try out for every club, as a freshman can only handle so much work and clubs.
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    Go to the Homecoming game and dance. You'll have so much fun, you'll realize that those 8th grade dances were nothing!
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    Participate in school bake sales, musicals, craft fairs, or anything you're allowed to.


  • Most upperclassmen won't like the freshman. It's just a fact of life. So always be a friendly and respectful person, but not a pushy person that maybe cool to hang out with, but really an annoying, chatty freshman.
  • Always be who you've always been since elementary school, because your real self can probably attract real friends and make a positive impression on the staff.
  • Give your peers a chance and try to hang out with all kinds of people, because you never know when you can find another friend.
  • Don't expect too much. You've still got three years in high school. Don't be discouraged if you don't make varsity wrestling, or the lead in the musical. It's not often a freshman is able to do so. Just keep aiming for the top!
  • If possible, hang around after school for a couple of hours to see what's going on. There's always something happening.
  • In real life, it's rare for freshman to get 'canned' and such by seniors.
  • If you have an older brother or sister in higher classes then just ask for advice or stick with them until you get to know some people. If you have old middle school friends then hang around with them!


  • Remember to have fun, but don't forget your studies and abandon them.
  • Don't be too eager to try things, as some activities are only for juniors and seniors. Making enemies with them is very bad!

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Categories: Back to School | Surviving High School