#1: Intro to the Brahma World
August 28, 2014
Freshmen, we’ve all been there. When I think of my freshman year, I remember the period of my life when I was constantly surprised by everything that was going on. To be fair, I was a ninth grader fresh out of a sheltered private Catholic school with no idea as to who anybody at school was. Thankfully, I’ve left that time behind me and now have a better feel for high school. So, here are a few tips to help you understand how Diamond Bar High School works.
DBHS is a pretty big place that’s really crowded. Navigating through the hallways during passing period is like traffic on the freeway during rush hour, making it especially difficult if you’re trying to get to your next class on the opposite side of school. Try experimenting possible routes to your classes so that you can avoid being pressed for time, and make it to class before the bell rings. Also, watch out for stairs! They can be your worst enemy, and falling down them is never a fun trip (pun intended). I know from experience, sadly.
Also, unlike some high schools, DBHS isn’t a place where everybody eats in an indoor cafeteria. You’re free to eat lunch wherever you want to on campus. If you prefer dining indoors, some teachers will let you eat in their classrooms! For those last minute cram sessions and study groups, the library is almost always open.
Another thing to note: the school year is filled with a variety of events. During football season, there’s purple Friday every week, a chance for your fourth period to be put into a raffle for pizza if everybody wears purple. And throughout the year, many lunch activities will take place in the downstairs cafeteria. When it’s the time for Food Fair, the school’s clubs and organizations sell different types of food in the upper quad.
High school is the time when college talks begin. However, as a freshman, don’t worry about searching for the right college yet. Balance is key. Before you stress out by looking at sites like College Confidential, you should focus on your grades. Keep up your GPA as best as you can.
Get to know your teachers. Everybody has a different grading style and personality. Do your homework and grab any chance at extra credit because it can be the defining factor in your grade when it’s the end of grading period and you’re at borderline.
If you’re struggling in a class, get help right away, whether it’s after school CSF tutoring, a private tutor, or simply talking to a smart classmate. If you want better grades, you have to make the effort.
This school is known for its wide variety of extracurriculars. You can be in a sport, join a bunch of clubs, or do both. Although you may want to join as many as you can to impress colleges, think it over before you do. Events like Club Rush that happen on campus can make you feel like having one club isn’t enough. Only participate in things that you actually like because not only will you enjoy yourself more but it’s also a lot better than being in 10 clubs. If you really like something, stick with it— your dedication shows. If you don’t and you feel like you should just do it because “college,” then just drop it.
However, if you’re kind of clueless as to what you want to do and your first semester wasn’t enough time for you to decide, don’t fret yet. Second semester is actually a good time to decide what you want to focus on in high school through its annual Freshman Remix, where you’ll have a tailored introduction to clubs, performing arts, and sports.
Having extracurricular activities is also a great way to make friends and discover what you genuinely enjoy. So try out for the sport that you want to join or debate in organizations like Mock Trial. If you like writing, there’s always this newspaper.
Here’s a last tip you should remember. Your freshman year is a time of opportunities, but also a time of mistakes. Just know that it’s not the end of the world. After all, your high school career has just started.
Tell us how your first week went below!