Adjustment to a Life at North: The Class of 2026

This semester, Bloomington High School North and its teachers and faculty welcomes the newest class of freshmen, the class of 2026. As students come from middle school into BHSN, they have to adapt to their new environment. Common jitters and anxieties balance out with those excited to begin the new chapter of their lives: high school. Each freshman has their own first impressions of the school, and here is what some of the class of 2026 had to say.

Ty Madeira explained that his first few weeks went well. “I haven’t really had any trouble getting around.” “What really surprised me is the amount of extracurriculars available.”

Freshmen may be excited, or overwhelmed, by the clubs and sports that North has to offer. It can be hard to pick and choose which activities to devote time and effort towards. Balancing these extracurriculars and social life is one of the difficult adjustments incoming freshmen face.

“We’ve been freestyling and rapping and stuff.” Dominic Robertson is enthusiastic about the school year’s start. “I’ve been keeping my grades up so everything’s been good.”

The freshmen also had their own conflicting ideas about what North was going to be like upon attending the school. Some thought that the school was larger than it really is.

“I used to think that it was a really big school but it’s actually quite small,” explained Rehan Roe. “I just thought it was bigger.”

On the other hand, some students, like Dominic, thought it would be smaller. “When I first came here I thought it would be super small for some reason. The school didn’t look very big from the outside.” 

Despite their own preconceived ideas about the school and struggles with adjusting to the high school atmosphere, most freshmen seem to be excited to be here at North and among their peers.

The teachers also had their own first impression of the freshman class, with their own surprises.

“Apathy, lots of apathy,” said Mr. Blackburn, who teaches Geography and History of the World. He thinks that students are more often “having a hard time seeing the purpose of education,” and understanding how it will benefit them.

He also said that he was surprised by the calmness of the incoming class. “I haven’t had as many classroom management issues.” “I don’t know if it’s what’s going on with their devices but I haven’t had any rowdy incidents happening”

         Mr. Nelson shared his opinion of the new students as well. “It’s a lot of changes, new routines.” He thinks that everyone is just “figuring out their role in this community.”

         Both teachers seemed to feel that the pandemic had something to do with the new student’s behaviors and attitudes towards school.

Nelson added,“they lost the traditional middle school experience.” 

Mr. Blackburn stated that there has been more and more dependency on devices by students in recent years, which he thinks is a result of “some of the crazy social stuff going on right now.” He thinks that students are using their phones, tablets and computers as escapes from the rapidly changing atmosphere that we are living in right now.

         The teachers also have some good advice for the new students to help them get adjusted to their time at North.

         “Try to be curious to learn.” “Be willing to give it a shot.” As a teacher, he values the excitement that students have to learn more than the actual information that they remember.

         “Don’t wait to get going and get started,” said Mr. Nelson. He thinks that students often get behind early on in the semester and it’s much harder to catch back up on material as the year progresses. He says it’s “always easier to dig out of a smaller hole.”

         So, if you are a member of the class of 2026, keep these things in mind and if you are struggling with the tough transition to high school, know that many others feel the same way. And remember, it’s great to be a Cougar.