Thursday 31 July 2014


Are you starting secondary school this year? We asked some secondary school readers to offer their best tips and advice to help you make the transition as smooth as it can be…

Sam says:
I was extremely shy in Year Seven and I wish now I'd come out of my shell more. Don't worry about not making friends - there is guaranteed to be someone in you class you will get along with, and if you make an effort to be friendly you will find friends who will stick by you through everything. Just have fun and enjoy that first year - in some ways, it's the best! I did learn pretty fast not to leave my homework until the last minute - it's easier to do the day you get it, trust me!

Josy says:
Be yourself! Don't pretend to be someone you're not, but try to be confident. You won't make friends unless you make an effort to be friendly. If your friends are going to the same school, stick with them to begin with until you find your feet. Be organised - things aren't so easy-going at secondary and you'll probably get homework every day. set reminders to do it: excuses like 'the dog ate my homework' won't work anymore and you don't want to make a bad impression at the very start! Find out the school rules and stick to them… and, finally, enjoy! Secondary school only happens once and it will teach you so many things about life. You'll make new friends and your knowledge will grow!

Stephanie says:
Tips to help those going into Year Seven? It's honestly not as bad as you think! Stay calm, ask for directions if you're lost or need some help, and most of all… ENJOY it!

Cerys says:
I used to be pretty scared of making friends, but really, if you just open your mouth and talk to someone, you can make good friends in a minute!

Lauren says: 
Organize your bag the night before and check you have all your equipment, homework and books. Then you won't be getting into trouble for forgetting them - or, if you oversleep, you won't have to waste time running round searching for things.

Chloe says: 
Enjoy it! You are not the only one who'll be scared - all your friends will be feeling the same, even though they may not admit it! Everyone goes through it, so relax and have a little fun with your friends… it will all be fine!

Blue says:
Act confident, but remember - everyone else is probably just as nervous as you are! Never be afraid to ask for directions or help when you need it… nobody's expecting you to know your way around right away. You'll settle in no time and this time next year you will wonder why you ever worried in the first place!

Deborah says:
Biggest rule of all: do NOT daydream in class. The new teachers you'll have may be unpredictable and if you miss something or don't respond things can get super scary, super fast!

Laura says:
Year seven/ S1 can be a rollercoaster, but try to remain strong and enjoy the ride!

Pippa says:
1/ Be organised - pack your bag the night before and don't leave homework to the last minute.
2/ Don't whistle, hum or sing in class… very awkward if it suddenly goes quiet for some reason!
3/ Have fun and make friends with the right people, and don't worry about getting lost… you'll soon get used to it!

Charlotte says:
Getting lost is a worry, but in three or four days you'll know your way around. You WILL make new friends, and they will be just as nervous as you. Even the older ones will have to adjust to new teachers and classmates. Make a good impression - that first day will be what your teachers and classmates will think of you for the rest of the year.

Morgan says:
Don't try to be someone you're not - if you do, you'll end up falling in with the wrong people and getting out of a situation like that is harder than getting into it! Honesty is the best policy!

Cathy says:
Ooh, lots of good advice… and more to come over the next few weeks! COMMENT BELOW to add your advice and suggestions!


  1. When I started S1 I moved to a private school. I am very shy and quiet, and I vaguely knew only 1 girl there out of 30 new students in a year of roughly 160 people. However, on the induction day (so before school had properly started) I made 2 new friends in my registration class, and it wasn't long before I had made 6 good friends, some of whom had been at the school for years and already knew everyone. All I'm saying is as scary as it might seem to start with, you're bound to find people you get along with, and there are always people in the same boat as you, so just be yourself and things will be ok :)

  2. i am not gonna go to secondary for a year or two, but my older sister is starting in first year, or what people in the uk would call s1 or year seven. are these illustrations from malory towers? they arent from st.clares. i have read all of them, and those pictures have nothing to do with them but i have only read one malory tower book, upper fourth at malory towers!

    1. Nope, they are from my collection of vintage annuals… Girl's Crystal and School Friend… they were packed with school stories. The annuals are mostly from the 40s & 50s… I collect them (not old enough to have read them at the time, before you ask… they're from before I was invented!)

  3. I'm starting high school in September and all that advice was very helpful:)

    Love anon♥♡★

  4. starting high school in 3 1/2 weeks and thanks for your help! :) really helpful. Ill keep that advice in my mind.

  5. I started a new school this year and its already hard with everyone has already got there little groups and breaking into them is hard but good advice, Ill keep it in mind thx

  6. Im starying seconday in 2 weeks and although Im going to try to be confident and make friend, im just out of a toxic friendship so im staying away from people who are no good for me.

  7. I am worried about making new friends. Not many people from my junior school are attending the same secondary school as me so it would be hard for me to stick with them for the first days. I am quite shy so I don't really like starting up a conversation up with anyone. Please could I have some advice about how to break the ice with people and how to build a strong friendship up...?

    1. I was in almost the exact same situation as you when I started secondary school. I'm very shy too, but there's bound to be someone in the same situation. I suggest you find clubs you're interested in as you might make friends there, and if there is someone in your class who looks a bit lost or lonely, go and sit with them. And try to smile - if you seem friendly, people will start to talk to you. Hope this was helpful :)

    2. Just be yourself- that way nothing can go wrong!!!!



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