Transitioning from Middle School to High School

Transitioning from Middle School to High School

Caroline Capuzello, Freshman Staff Writer

Transitioning into high school can be stressful for students, but this year in particular is especially challenging. Not only do students have to deal with the academic and social demands of high school for the first time, but they also must adjust to  the changes and guidelines that COVID-19 brings to the school environment as well. There are many things that they have and will miss out on that would’ve made them more comfortable and helped them to feel more prepared.

One thing that the 9th-grade class didn’t get was Freshman orientation. Freshman orientation is a big part of making the transition a little smoother for the students who were nervous about navigating their first day. Finding the way around a new school can be tricky, especially while a student tries to make it to class on time going only one-way.  Aiden Casey, a freshman at Hubbard High School, states, “It was hard remembering which hallway was the right way to go. If I accidentally went the wrong way, I had to go all the way around again because the hallways were one-way. It made me late to class a few times.”  Students usually get to tour the school and map out a good, efficient way to get to classes on time, but this year they didn’t have that chance. Fortunately, many upperclassmen and teachers at Hubbard High School have done their best to make this transition smoother. 

Another challenge that was already difficult for freshmen was the shift from middle school classes to high school classes. It is difficult for students to handle their heavier workload, and the new way of learning that COVID has created is making it harder. Many students and teachers at Hubbard High are struggling and feeling overwhelmed with hybrid and fully remote classes. “Not only is there way more work now that we’re in high school, but the work is also harder to keep track of because we can’t go to school every day. It’s confusing to switch back and forth from in school to remote,” says freshman Christina Badurik. With school being like this, it is harder for teachers to notice any academic or social problems that students are having. 

Not only is this a burden on students, but teachers as well. It is challenging for teachers to give students the help they need while also putting in grades, answering emails, questions, and updating their google classrooms constantly.  Social Studies teacher Mrs. Deborah Wack explains, “I wish they could be there in person. I feel very overwhelmed that I can’t give personalized instruction to the students who are fully remote.” Because teachers can’t help each and every student individually, students are getting confused and stressed because they have a harder time learning. Spanish teacher Ms. Shannon Street says that she is doing her best to keep her instructions clear. She states, “I’m trying to help my students to always know what’s expected, and I try to keep it very straight forward. I wish I could make sure they all have access to technology. I could do much more with the students at home if I could make sure they had technology. “ She also said, “It’s very hard for students beginning to learn a new language to understand the correct pronunciations with masks on.” According to TheRANDBLOG, although most teachers are “engaged in distance learning with their students… only 12 percent reported covering the full curriculum they would have covered if schools hadn’t closed.”  So another apparent disadvantage is the loss of curriculum and material coverage.

Although this year’s freshmen didn’t get to have a normal transition to high school, everyone’s still trying their best to make the most of it. In these challenging times, it is important for freshmen to stay positive and remember that help is just around the corner—whether it be from the supportive upperclassmen or the encouraging teachers of Hubbard High.