The Guardian

Freshman First Days improves upon last year’s event

Nic Baggetto, Copy Editor

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Whether it be excitement, nervous anticipation, or dread, the first days of school always prove to be busy. The second annual Freshman First Days orientation was conducted on August 26 and 27 to help ease the transition from junior high to high school for Elk Grove High School’s newest class members.

For the most part, it was the same as

last year, with the exception of a few tweaks in some of the sessions and an additional summer reading review session.

“The biggest change was having the senior leaders,” English teacher Bonnie Kale said. “They actually missed the first two days of school to spend time with the freshmen.”

Some of the sessions included: “Doors to the Future,” Digital Citizenship-Social Media, Utilizing Resources, Student Panel, Social Skills and Norms, How to use Notability, Balancing Life in High School, Athletic and Activity Introduction, and Team Building.

Senior involvement consisted mainly of leading freshmen to and from classes as well as teaching them about nation cheers and school activities.

“Reactions have been really really positive so far,” Kale said. “The seniors said also that it was really interesting and valuable for them to see how to be a leader and set an example.”

“I came from a smaller grade school, so I met kids I wouldn’t meet otherwise,” freshman Dan Duffy said.

Around 50 teachers volunteered to help this year. Some of those volunteers were freshman teachers, increasing the chance of freshmen making connections and bonding with their teachers before school started. In addition, there was a group of 10 teachers and administrators that helped organize the days.

“The whole idea behind freshman first days came from teachers. Teachers run the show,” said Associate Principal for Instruction Megan Knight. “They do all the organization and all the communication.

iPads were strategically distributed over the summer on pickup dates so that every freshman would have one going into the first day. About 200 out of the 535 students received their iPads at the end of summer school, allowing more time for students unfamiliar with Apple products to get accustomed to them.

“We learned about Schoology and Infinite Campus, which was pretty helpful,” freshman Kaitlyn Sciaccotta said.

On the other side of the coin, some freshmen found the first days unhelpful and rather mundane.

“It seemed kind of unnecessary to me,” freshman Agha Ali said. “We had already come to the high school a bunch of times during junior high.”

Duffy and Ali both agree that there only needs to be one freshman first day next year as well as some changes to the list of sessions.

“There was one class called social norms that did not need to happen,” Duffy said. “No one wanted to be there.”

Similar to last year, a survey was given out at the end of the second day, asking students what they think should be changed and left the same next year.

“We’re always listening to feedback to see how we can improve,” Knight said.

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Freshman First Days improves upon last year’s event