Starting high school comes with a number of mixed feelings. It’s an exciting time. So much is changing and you’re about to start a whole new set of subjects, meet new people, create new friendships and take on new challenges. While all this change is exhilarating, the fear of the unknown can also be a daunting prospect. You’re about to be a small fish in a big pond again.
So here are some tips to make sure you get off on the right foot next year.
1. Get set before day one
It’s incredibly important to ensure you start high school with all the tools you need. Make sure you have your stationery, uniform, and study space ready before your first day. Parents, make it as easy as possible for your child to organise their notes from day one, because once a week or two has passed, it becomes difficult to try and systemise loose scribbles and worksheets.
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2. Find a good study space free from distractions
Create a designated area for your study where you can focus and limit distractions. Maybe you prefer the dining room table, or perhaps it’s a desk in your room - choose a place you feel comfortable, alert and focused. Keep it clean and tidy to help you keep focused.
3. Get a homework and study planner
In high school you are expected to be more organised. Use a study planner to mark out key dates and a diary to keep track of when your assignments are due. Write a ‘to-do’-list and tick off each task as you finish it. Colour code your subjects, and know when you have to be in which classroom. This will make every day easier.
4. Set up a study routine
Never underestimate the value of a routine, especially when it comes to school work and study time. A good way to do it is to spend the first 30 minutes to an hour after you arrive home from school doing something you enjoy – which might be playing music, sport, video or games. Then spend an hour or two on homework before dinner.
5. Set realistic goals for your first term
Setting yourself goals and dedicating yourself to achieving them will help you stay motivated and help you achieve the results you want. The best time to set them is when you’re feeling refreshed and re-energised at the start of the term. (Don’t be too hard on yourself if you don’t achieve them, try your best and you will reap the rewards).
6. Be flexible with what subjects you study when
You might be overwhelmed with the amount of study in high schools. Try to manage it with being flexible with what you study when. If you have a big maths exam coming up, spend the entire evening on maths and work on the other subjects tomorrow. Practice your routine every day (even if you don't have much on - use the time to get ahead) and your workload will feel manageable.
7. Be proud of what you have achieved
Write your goals down and stick them above your desk, as a reminder of what you’re aiming for. Once you reach a goal, be proud of yourself. You will notice that working hard will pay off.
8. Meet new people
Remember, everyone is in the same situation as you. Try to speak with your new classmates, they might be even shyer than you are. High school will be a lot more fun when you can share your memories with new friends.
9. Try something new
One of the best ways to meet new people is by trying something new! Find an activity you enjoy, like music or soccer. High school gives you so many new opportunities to find something you enjoy doing and meet others with the same interests.
10. Stay in touch with your ‘old’ friends
You might miss your friends from primary school. But don’t be sad, just because you may not go to the same school, it doesn’t mean you will forget each other. Stay in touch, it will be so exciting when you see each other and talk about your new high school adventures!
11. Stay positive and enjoy the ride
Challenges won’t get easier if you worry about them. You might come across obstacles that make you feel uncomfortable. Try to stay positive and take every day at a time. With a positive attitude, you can accomplish anything!
12. Don’t be afraid to ask for help
Ask your teacher when a question arises in class. Ask a friend who shares the same class as you. If you are stuck with a tricky maths formula, or need help with grammar and writing, you can always connect to one of our online Subject Specialists. More peaceful homework evenings, less pressure on mum and dad to remember high school maths, English, and science concepts.