When reflecting on the past four years of high school, ten things have stuck out as key components of my time here. I suggest that every student takes on the challenge of completing every item on this list. Whether you’re a freshmen coming in to the high school or a sernior holding on to your final months, completing this list will make your time here easier, more fun, and one of the most unforgettable periods of your life.
1. Perform in a talent show or gong show.
It doesn’t really matter what you do, but getting the courage to stand on stage and do something in front of the student body is a must-do at some point in high school. Whether it was screaming at the top of my lungs or doing a ridiculous, satirical tribute to Donald Trump, performing in talent shows has made for many hilarious memories. (Pro tip: Don’t tell people about your act beforehand. It’ll be a lot funnier or more impressive with a surprise factor.)
2. Take AP Psych.
You should take this class for a lot of reasons. Ms. Anderson is an amazing teacher, you’ll probably remember and use the information long after you’ve finished the class, and it’s hard not to pass the AP test. In class, Ms. Anderson uses interactive demos that are fun and helpful come the exam, and the Superhero Project allows students to assign each part of the brain to a character they create. Although the course demands a lot of work, I always looked forward to going to AP Psych class to see what would be in store. (Pro tip: I’d take the course as a junior, when you’re a little more determined to perform your best the entire year.)
3. Paint yourself.
Whether it’s on the last day of spirit week or at a football game, cover yourself with paint at least once. Being covered in gold paint junior year made losing spirit week not as bad because I could go home and laugh at how insane I looked. Painting yourself with your school colors is such a high school thing to do, so make sure to check this item off the list as many times as you can. (Pro tip: The best place I’ve found around here to buy body paint is Party Fair in Newtown. Plus, the store is right near Chick-fil-A.)
4. Take hot lava day way too seriously.
Hot lava day comes just once a year, when student government rolls red and orange paper across the hallway in hopes that students will avoid stepping on the fiery blotches. It’s kind of stupid and a drag right before AP tests, but it’s a chance to just be juvenile and silly. (Pro tip: Don’t just make sure you’re keeping off of the hot lava yourself; make sure that all of your friends aren’t being lame either by holding them accountable to staying off the lava.)
5. Don’t take prom way too seriously.
I was so busy junior year planning the whole shindig, that by the time the actual event came in May, I was so over it. So I took my sister to prom. Although she fell asleep at the table (LOL), I still had loads of fun with my friends that night; that’s really what prom should be about. It’s so easy to get caught up in finding the perfect dress, making sure your promposal will be magical, and planning out every second of the day, but just relax. (Pro tip: Dancing at prom is different than dancing at school dances. Bring back the old school moves and leave the bumpin’ and grindin’ in the middle school gym...where it belongs.)
6. Talk to Ms. Sanders.
Ms. Sanders was probably the first teacher that made me realize that teachers don’t have to be a strictly authoritative figure. Teachers can teach so much more than what’s written on their PowerPoints. AP Lang with Ms. Sanders taught me that teachers can be there for you and be truly interested in your life, and vise versa. Ms. Sanders listens, and you’ll want to listen back; try not to take any teacher for granted, but if no one else, definitely don’t overlook Ms Sanders. (Pro tip: Don’t clap in unison, crinkle a water bottle, or talk about lawn gnomes in her class.)
7. Know where the best water fountain is.
You’ll find out for yourself, as this is a widely debated topic. I’ve found that the best water fountain upstairs is across from O’Hara and Bonj’s room, and the best downstairs is in the music hallway. (Pro tip: A trip to the water bottle filling fountain in the music hallway is always worth it.)
8. Road trip to away soccer and football games.
Some of my favorite nights of high school were spent driving hours to games off campus. Along the way, you’ll stop for food, sing songs in the car, and laugh endlessly. But once you’re there, everyone who has road tripped separately reunites to make an NHS fan section. Bringing school spirit off campus is so fun and worthwhile. (Pro tip: Pick where you’re stopping for food beforehand. Mapping out a route while on that route is usually difficult in a loud car while driving through unknown territory.)
9. Have a snack with Dr. Yanni.
The superintendent right now is seriously one of the coolest guys ever. He’s so funny and sarcastic yet knowledgeable and experienced. Somehow he balances every favorable trait that a school administrator could have. And if you ever need to go to his office, he’ll totally share his stash of snacks with you. (Pro tip: Bring him a Diet Pepsi because he’s literally addicted.)
10. Go to the Phillies game senior year and get on the JumboTron.
By the time the school trip to a Phillies game comes around, it’ll be the spring of your senior year. That night, we danced on the JumboTron, ran through the stadium in search of free stuff, and, most importantly, finally established our squad. For me, the Phillies game was a night that marked the beginning of the end. After ten years at New Hope, I finally established who was most important, and who I really needed to cherish during my last weeks.
Once you’ve completed this list, you’ve left your mark on NHS, and probably made memories you’ll to never forget.