By: Joyce S.
Editorial Note: The following passage includes a collection of dramatized, yet true stories from my high school experience as well as my friends’.

We stared at the large building. It loomed over us; immediately striking fear into the hearts of us poor freshmen. Some strange combination of excitement and despair filled us, only making us more anxious. Hesitantly, we walked inside…
Tip #1: Keep walking, no matter what
It was only first period when we lost someone to the school’s tricky ways. We were wandering through the school in our small group of four, when suddenly; one of our pack lost the most crucial element of her survival.
Her schedule
She watched in despair as her paper fluttered gently on to the tile floor.  Thinking she could grab the schedule, she lunged for it.
“No!” The rest of us yelled, seeing her impending doom inch closer and closer. As soon as she grasped the paper, a stampede of gargantuan upperclassmen hurdled through the hallway. Our friend looked up at us; her face filled with pure panic. She was swept away in the crowd. We tried to save her, but there was nothing we could do…
Tip #2: Get to class on time
I dashed down the hallway, narrowly avoiding the other kids.
Then the bell rang.
My eyes went wide, I flew down the stairs, and threw open the door to room 1309.
“Welcome to AP Calculus,” The teacher stated before I ever so smoothly interrupted.
Oops, wrong class…
I quickly exited the room as the seniors in the room laughed hysterically at my horror-stricken face. I walked a few more feet down the hallway and found room 1310. When I walked into the correct classroom, my teacher smiled at me, aware of the craziness of the first day. She excused my tardiness and told me to take a seat. I scanned the room and found the only empty desk. As I got closer, I could tell why the seat was left empty. The gum-crusted chair squeaked loudly as I sat down. The chair tipped so far back on its 3 and a half legs, I was sure I would fall over.
Tip #3: Make new friends
Before I knew it, lunch had arrived, and I found myself all alone in the cafeteria. None of my friends, not even acquaintances, had my lunch period. I was crestfallen. After about 20 minutes of nudging my mystery slop around my lunch tray, I finally spotted some potential friends. Two girls were quietly eating a few tables away from me, and they seemed to be in the same boat as me. It took me about 10 nerve-wracking minutes to get up the courage to go sit with them, but I finally did.
“Can I sit with you guys?” I asked hesitantly.
They responded with pleasant smiles and eager nods, and I could feel that this was just the beginning of a long-lasting friendship.
Tip #4: Be aware of school traditions
            My school has a tradition that I wasn’t exactly aware of until the first day of school. I walked/skipped down to the bus stop feeling confident as ever in my brand new black blouse. I was so sure I would get so many compliments, but I received the exact opposite as soon as I got on the bus. I stood in the bus aisle, my shirt in clear view, and all of the freshmen seemed to gasp in unison. Still confused at the dramatic reaction, I took a seat next to my friend as pity washed over her face.
            “Didn’t anyone tell you?” She asked.
            Apparently, on the first day, black is strictly reserved for seniors. If you wear black on the first day and you’re not a senior… they’ll throw flour at you! As we neared the school I got more and more nervous. I slowly stepped off of the bus, and I stared defiantly down the walkway to the school’s entrance. I showed off my blouse with pride.
            Today’s going to be an interesting day…
Tip #5: Keep track of your homework
            It was only day one and I already had hours of homework. I plopped down on the couch because I was completely drained for the day. Right before I drifted off into a well-deserved sleep, I forced myself to trudge over to the computer and start my homework. I turned on the computer, opened a browser, and…
            What was my homework again?
            My mind went blank; it farted beyond repair! I couldn’t remember a single thing! If only I had written it down, then maybe I would’ve been better off.
If you are a rising high school freshman, don’t be worried. High school is not nearly as dramatic, hectic, or traumatizing as it seems. In high school, it’s easier to find who you are and find a place where you feel that you belong. With the help of friends, family, and this survival guide of course, you too can survive high school.

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