Home Opinion Firsthand Advice for the Transition to Middle School

Firsthand Advice for the Transition to Middle School

Jada Matson. Photo supplied.

By Jada Matson
Sherman Middle School 7th grader

Middle school can be a new beginning. If things didn’t go as perfect as you wanted in elementary school — academic and people-wise — middle school is where you can flip things around. Start fresh. Fix the things you want to fix about yourself, and find a way to be comfortable. There is nothing more rare, nor more beautiful, than someone being unapologetically themself; comfortable in their own skin. Perfect imperfection.

A good place to start is the transition to middle school. I have three pieces of advice.

Friendships. Middle school is sometimes where old friendships end and new ones form. People will start to form “crowds.” Sometimes friendships get lost in the crowd. A quote I hold onto is: “True friendship isn’t about being inseparable, it’s being separated and nothing changes.”

Academics. It is much different from the academic experiences you have in elementary school. There are so many teachers you have to get to know. Remember how your teachers run their classroom because every teacher is unique and does things differently. Being yourself with your teachers and telling them when something they’re teaching is challenging can help build a relationship and help your learning. Take them seriously when they say, “If you have any questions or if you need more help understanding what you’re learning, please see me.” I am still learning to have the courage to ask when I need help, but the times when I did ask, it really helped my understanding.

Participation. Getting involved with your school activities is what really makes your middle school experience something you will cherish. The activities you choose to take part in is where you get to discover yourself. It gives you a chance to meet people who have the same interests as you. You can even discover something new about yourself, like a hidden talent that you never knew you had.

Something I learned about myself this year was that speaking up and showing who you are as a person really makes a sixth grade experience worthwhile. Looking forward, I hope I can really step out of my comfort zone and be true to me, and I hope you will, too. “Look forward with hope, not backward with regret.”