Letter to Eighth-Graders Registering at NDA

Ava Vande Corput, Staff Writer, Advanced Journalism

Dear Eighth-Graders,

You’ve all probably heard that high school goes by so fast, but it is so true. I am currently halfway through my sophomore year, and high school is flying by. Every day seems to be going faster than the last. High school is an amazing experience in the long run, but there will be ups and downs.

When I was an incoming freshman, I did not have an older sibling at the school like most of my friends did. I had no idea what I was getting myself into, or what to expect my first day of high school. Most of my friends knew the layout of the school, had an older sibling to help them, and knew many of the teachers at Notre Dame. On the other hand I didn’t know any teachers, I didn’t know where my classes were, I had no idea what the priory meant, and I didn’t know who I was going to sit next to during lunch.

On the first day of school, I walked up to my locker, fiddled with my combination, and then went to my classroom about fifteen minutes early. As I was sitting in the classroom, a few other girls came in, and I started talking to them. Soon the bell rang, and my freshman theology teacher walked in and started going through the syllabus. About fifteen minutes into class a girl got sick and had to leave school. After about a week this girl finally came back to school and had to sit next to me because there were no seats left in the classroom.

It was fate. A few weeks later we were talking every day, and we started to hang out every weekend. We are still best friends to this day, and people who don’t know us think that we have been best friends for years.

When you go to high school your friend groups open up because there are so many more people to meet that share your interest. You will be able to meet new people in your classes, after-school activities, and social events. The more open you are to meeting new people, the more friends you will make.

Also, get involved with the school whether it’s a sport, club or simply attending a social event such as football games and school dances. The more you are involved, the better your high school experience will be, and the more people you will meet. There will only be so many football games and high school dances so take advantage of the opportunities. Do not become so involved with grades and classes that you forget to have a social life, and you miss out on fun activities with your friends.

The homework and tests in high school are harder than they were in middle school, but if you study and work hard, you will do just fine. In high school teachers don’t give a lot of homework, but they do give a lot of tests and quizzes. Doing well on these assessments are critical for your grade. When you study, you need to learn and find out what works for you. Everyone studies differently, so you need to study in the way you learn best.

You’ve also probably heard about finals which, in my opinion, aren’t as bad as they are made out to be. Finals can count for a good portion of your grade, but if you have a good grade in the class, you will be just fine. They do take a lot of preparation, but the amount of work you put in will show your results. Don’t focus so much on the grade, but rather enjoy the classes. Find a love for learning new things, and that will make the homework, tests, and quizzes much easier.

High school is what you make of it, and the more you get involved, the better it will be.

Best Wishes. . . See you around!

Ava, a sophomore