A Day In The Life Of A High Schooler
October 31, 2018
Well, hello there, Coyotes! My name is Ajooni, and if you don’t know me, I was the previous editor of the AMAZING Day Creek Howl. I’m here to give you a completely honest perspective about high school, specifically Los Osos. If you’re going to Rancho/Etiwanda/Alta Loma, this stuff may apply to you, but no guarantees! Yes, this is the dreaded topic that will certainly come up once eighth-grade rolls to an end.
The words “high schooler” are typically accompanied with a fear of getting lost, nervousness and stress about the amount of work you’ll get, and the unhappiness of leaving old friends behind. The first day of school is accompanied with horror stories about walking into the wrong classroom or being late to that first class. I bet you’ll be pretty relieved to hear that most of that stuff doesn’t really happen. At orientation, you meet up with old friends and exchange schedules to see which classes you’ll have together. Someone will hand you a map and tour you around the school so that you know where you’re going, and you’ll be reassured by upperclassmen that the amount of work in your freshman year is NOTHING.
Here’s a little how your first day might go:
7:15 AM: You get to school extra early to ensure that you won’t get lost, be late or walk into the wrong classroom. There are a few other freshmen there, looking just as nervous as you are. You frantically text your friends: “WHERE ARE YOU GUYS?!?!” While waiting for a response, you decide to wander outside and explore your new campus.
7:25 AM: Your friends finally responded and you meet them across campus. Your feet already hurt because of how far you’ve walked, but the dread about starting class is much more prominent.
7:45 AM: The school begins to get a little crowded. You make your way, along with a few friends, to your first class, enjoying the newfound freedom of wearing flip-flops while you’re at it.
7:58 AM: The bell rings and you are the first one in your first-period class. The teacher is at her desk, deeply invested in her computer, so you find a seat near the back of the class, hoping to see some familiar faces.
8:05 AM: There is a rush of students coming to class before the tardy bell rings, and some of your close friends walk in and find a spot near you. You triple-check your schedule just to make sure you’re in the right class. The teacher finally gets up and addresses the class. She welcomes you to high school and immediately passes out a syllabus and an icebreaker activity.
8:45 AM: Your teacher has been introducing high school and going over her syllabus for some time at this point. You are given the rest of the period to work on your icebreaker, which forces you to get up and actually talk to your classmates. You realize that most of the other students in your class are just as nervous as you.
8:50 AM: You realize that your phone is in your pocket and scramble to bury it in your backpack before your teacher sees. This is until you notice plenty of kids with their phones on their desks, answering worried texts from their parents and checking the time every few minutes because they’re so worried about being late. (Seriously, it’s no biggie. You have seven whole minutes to get from one class to another. Most of the time you’re early and have to wait for the other class to leave the room. You take your time and stop to pick up club flyers and exchange high fives from old friends!). Pleasantly surprised, you leave your phone out. Your teacher notices, but says nothing. Dang, maybe high school will be fun!
9:01 AM: You rush out of your first period class as the teacher dismisses you after quickly addressing the class a final time. You run to your next class, which is in a different building. You get there in less than a minute, just to find students still exiting the class. You totally forgot you have a 7-minute passing period. Jeez. Now that you’re waiting, you check your phone. Your mom sent you a message: “I love you! Have a great day! Enjoy high school and pay attention in class!” You respond with a heart and proceed into your next class.
The rest of your periods go almost identically: an icebreaker, an introduction, and a syllabus. This time, your teacher has you leave your phone in a pocket at the front. But it’s no biggie, since you’re already so used to strictly enforced phone rules from middle school. As lunch peeks around the corner, you communicate with your companions, hoping you have the same lunch with at least one of them.
12:19 PM: The bell rings for lunch. You make your way outside through immense traffic in the hallways, only to find that all the tables are taken. You meet up with your friends and sit on a bench, discussing your classes so far. You are reminded that tomorrow, Friday, is a late start day. Wait. School starts at 9:05?! NO WAY! YOU GET TO SLEEP IN! Your stress level has gone down completely, as you realize high school will be a breeze.
12:30 PM: Your friends drag you over to the student store. You only have $2, but you go up to the window and see what you can order. There’s ice cream, chips, desserts, drinks, ramen noodles (that’s right – ramen!) and other snacks for under $1 each. You buy corn nuts and a Rice Krispy treat, amazed at the amount of food you have access to. You make yourself a mental note to bring an extra 50¢ tomorrow for ice cream.
Your day goes by, uneventful except for your freezing cold toes (maybe you shouldn’t have worn those flip flops) and hallways so crowded you have to make a shield to prevent yourself from accidentally getting elbowed. You already met five new friends and *lowkey* have a crush in your bio class. Wow! High school isn’t as bad as you expected. The workload is small compared to your expectations and you were pleasantly surprised with the amount of freedom and fun you’ve already experienced. You are already planning on joining plenty of clubs and going after school for sports tryouts.
4:30 PM: You’re finally home after practice, exhausted from the day’s events (Prepare for being exhausted every day. Even though high school is a blast, it’s tiring!). You parents surprise you with Chick-fil-A and boba, just what you needed after your first day! You finally get to sit down and spill to your parents about how great your first day was (okay, maybe you exaggerated a little and said you were almost late to a class but that’s irrelevant…you need as much sympathy as possible to continue getting boba after school!
If you’re like me and are taking all honors and maybe even the new AP class offered for freshmen, don’t sweat it. Your teachers will prepare you for future assignments and the workload isn’t that much more compared to prep classes. It all depends on your teachers and your work ethic (trust me, sometimes teachers don’t even tell you the homework… be grateful for the amazing DCIS teachers while it lasts!).
If you want to work hard and get your work done, it’ll happen. Many teachers allow time in class to finish your homework. Use that time wisely. Don’t be afraid to sit in the library during lunch and finish your work when you know it’ll be a long day. As high school goes on, you’ll learn that procrastination is NOT THE KEY TO SUCCESS. Trust me (as I tell you in all caps) – it’ll be the death of you!
You’ll have to imagine the experiences that are to follow- football games, rallies, homecoming (I’d suggest going freshman year just to get a taste of what it’s like! If you don’t like it, don’t go next year…simple as that! Also, just because you don’t have a date doesn’t mean you shouldn’t go. Show off your single self and stun everyone with your amazing taste in fashion!).
That first night, you’ll fall asleep at thinking of how great the year’s going to be. Although you miss Day Creek, you’re glad to be a part of a new family that considers you one of their own.
(CLAWS UP, FUTURE GRIZZLIES! <3)