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Things I Wish I Knew Before High School

Carli Hopper, Reporter

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According to my parents, I think I know everything about everything, in the sense of high school- they’re right. As much as they tried to help me navigate my way through the ups and downs of the past four years let’s face it- they were out of here before social media was invented, therefore their knowledge is more than a bit dated. Being the oldest child I had no idea what to expect on my first day of freshman year. Was it more Mean Girls or Ned’s Declassified? Well, whether you’re here to relate with a soon to be Braswell High School Alumni, or you are so stressed about high school you’re googling questions and wound up on this page, I hope the following information helps.

Freshman year: No one cares if your mom drops you off at school
My first day of freshman year I sat in the donut shop for 20 minutes before school started. To say I was embarrassed to have my mom drop me off was an understatement. I was mortified, and I honestly couldn’t tell you why. High Schoolers tend to be most insecure during their freshman year- and I can assure you I was. My friend (a junior I had met through cheer camp the previous summer) who was supposed to be bringing me to school was running late, and the longer I sat there the more embarrassed I got. Throughout the course of the year, I endured my fair share of awkward and uncomfortable moments, but I realized the less I overanalyzed the little things, the less awkward and uncomfortable moments I had. The movies might make high school out to be some awful, traumatic experience where everyone is at each other’s throats all the time and there is always some sort of gossip floating around the hallways, but in reality, it’s just four years of some really boring books.

Sophomore year: Take driver’s ed
My mom tried (like REALLY tried) to teach me how to drive, but she just couldn’t do it. It’s not that she doesn’t know how to drive, or how to teach me. It’s just that when someone’s number one rule of the road is “always go 20 mph under the speed limit” it’s more than a little bit difficult to learn. My dad also donated some time to teach me how to drive, but the first time I turned left without a green arrow that ended. As much as your parents want you to be able to drive they can’t always be the ones to teach you. I can assure you, taking drivers ed is beneficial to the both of you.

Junior year: This is the MOST DIFFICULT year of high school
At the beginning of my sophomore year, my parents moved my little brother and me to Oak Point, Texas. For an entire school year, I drove an hour to and from school every day. On top of working until 11:30 p.m. it was no surprise to my parents when I decided to transfer to Braswell my junior year. So yes, moving is hard, but not everyone experiences that junior year (except maybe all the seniors graduating this year). Junior year is when most kids transfer from pre-ap to ap classes, meaning you’re all but forced to take the ap test at the end of the year. Not only are they expensive, (although the school will assure you that money isn’t an issue) they are BORING, and you don’t even get to leave school afterward (that’s a no from me). Also, junior year is the best time to start taking SAT and ACT testing. These are the worst- especially if you have to drive to a different city to take them at seven in the morning. All I’m saying is- the summer after your sophomore year: prepare yourself.

Senior year: It’s not all it’s cracked up to be
Maybe it’s because I go to Braswell High School and millions of dollars just went into creating this campus so the entire school district is watching us- but senior year is not all butterflies and rainbows. Your teachers might say they’re going to treat you like adults because now most of the seniors legally are, but they don’t. They treat you the same way they have since freshman year (maybe with less eye rolling). Finals are still a requirement unless you’re taking the AP test, which let’s face it- ap tests are at the end of the year, senioritis has kicked in at full force by now. No one is taking the AP tests. And you’ve done homecoming and prom before, it’s just not a big deal anymore. The seniors may hype up senior year, but really they’re just excited to graduate.

Ultimately high school is what you make of it. If there were one (okay two) things I wished I knew before starting high school it would be this: STUDY, like ALL THE TIME. You’re never going to make it to those college frat parties if you can’t get into the college. Also, don’t take for granted the time you spend in the freezing halls of high school, not because I believe it goes by in the blink of an eye (on the contrary I think I’ve been in high school for 10 years) but because at least right now you don’t have to pay for it.

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