Having recently started our Upper School career, we noticed many changes in 9th grade compared to last year. We both started at Waynflete in seventh grade, so we got to experience two years of Middle School and the transition to Upper School, but our experiences alone would not answer or complete this essay. We wanted to get feedback from our peers on what they thought of their first year as an Upper School. To do this, we composed an anonymous three question survey, sent it out and then waited for answers from everyone. For the majority of students, the expectation going into 9th grade was that it would be stressful and hectic. They thought that it would be scary and not fun at all, but most of all a hard transition. Some people’s expectations of this year was that it would be challenging, socially and academically.
After asking for everyone’s expectations, our second question was what they thought of it so far. In our experience we have found the homework load is greater, and remembering parts of lessons for assessments to be more demanding than middle school. On the survey, most people said that 9th grade has much more free time than expected. Some people emphasized on the rewarding factors and how they felt that they had learned a great deal this year. In fact, it was nice to discover that we technically get four frees a week, although freshman year one free is taken up by seminar. On frees, most freshmen spend their time doing homework or hanging out with friends, and even sometimes just goofing off. Having experienced the first day of snow at school, a bunch of us borrowed a sled and went down some hills and even down a flight of stairs.
Our last question was addressing the favorite aspects of ninth grade so far. The majority of our classmates answered that their favorite part of 9th grade was Outdoor Experience. OE was a chance for the entire grade to bond, grow closer, and make new friends. Others answered with their favorite classes and activities at school, in which we have a wide range to choose from. Ninth grade has opened our eyes to the many possibilities and choices we have right in front of us. We have come to find it to be tiring at times, yet we have discovered our classmates love the freedom and challenges presented throughout the year.