Starting a new school can be scary but we’re here to help…
Heading off to a different school after the holidays? Whether you’re making the move up to secondary school or switching schools altogether, you’re likely to feel some anxiety and nerves. Change can be scary. We’re here with a few hints and pointers to help you settle in with as little stress as possible.
If you’re being plagued by unsettling thoughts such as ‘I won’t know my way around! How will I find my classes?’, try not to worry. You won’t be alone – in fact, there may be others starting at the same time as you, or a whole new year intake of pupils if you’re starting secondary school.
New students are usually given a guide for the first few days, just to help them find their way. Older students might be on hand to show you around, or you may be ‘buddied’ up with another student to offer you support and guidance. It’ll take a while for you to find your feet so try not to panic.
Your new school might also offer a tour of the building before the term starts, although this may be less common at the moment due to covid. It’s a good idea to also pre-plan the route you’ll take to your new school – this takes some of the pressure off and gives you a feeling of control. At least you’ll know what to expect from your commute to school.
Packed Is Prepared
The night or so before you start school, make sure you’ve got everything you need to make the day as smooth and stress-free as possible. Make sure you have your lunch sorted, a timetable, stationery, books and anything else you’ll need on the day.
Top tip – set your school clothes out the night before. It saves you rushing about in the morning or having that last-minute panic when you can’t find a sock. You’ll feel a lot less stressed in the morning. Wear something that makes you feel confident and happy – depending on your school’s uniform rules, you may be able to paint your nails or wear your favourite sweater. This can help boost your confidence.
Join A Club
Just moved to a new town? See if there are any local clubs or activities running during the holidays – this is a great way to meet new people and some of them may be in your classes when you start at your new school!
Breathe & Smile
It’s perfectly normal to feel nervous on your very first day. Try to stay as calm as possible and take deep breaths if you start to feel overwhelmed. Make eye contact and smile at people as you pass, if you feel able. Sometimes, faking confidence can actually make you feel more confident.
Don’t Be Afraid To Ask For Help
There’s no shame in asking for help if you need it. If you get lost or are unsure about a class, ask a fellow student or teacher for help. Remember, everyone at your school has been a new kid at some point so they understand those ‘first day feels’.
Making New Friends
Talking to new people can feel weird and awkward to begin with but you’ll soon get the hang of it. Try talking to the people who sit near you in class or at lunch – you could ask a question about the school or homework to start a conversation. If you’re new in town, you might want to ask about places to hang out at the weekend or where’s the best place to go to eat. Hopefully, you’ll make new friends before you know it!
If you find it difficult to start conversations, why not read our How To Make Small Talk guide here for more tips.