The Student News Site of Summit High School

The Summit Pinnacle

The Student News Site of Summit High School

The Summit Pinnacle

The Student News Site of Summit High School

The Summit Pinnacle

How to Master High School in 10 Steps

Tips and tricks for all you Summit newcomers.

Recently I have been feeling quite old. I find myself grumbling at the freshman zipping around on ebikes, my sister is going off to college, nobody on my waterpolo team remembers the seniors from my first year playing… I’m even a TA in a class where they call me ‘Ms. Orton.’

I’ve decided the best way to cope with the concept of my final high school year is to believe that with age comes wisdom. Today I impart (uncalled for) advice upon you all. I figure that as another school year kicks off and the fall chaos begins to ensue, there is no better time for a little bit of guidance.

Don’t get me wrong, I have complete faith in Summit’s new students and their ability to adjust to unfamiliar territory. But when looking back on my first year, there are a few things I wish I would have known out of the gates

Here are those things.

     1. Try something you’d never do otherwise

This one is pretty self explanatory, but the more you do around Summit the better. Join a few different clubs, talk to new people in the halls, try out rugby, waterpolo or basketball… looking back, I wish I would have taken some more diverse elective classes. I seriously would have mastered woodshop.

     2. Breakfast can make or break your day

I know the saying “Breakfast is the most important meal of the day,” is overused, but there’s some real truth in it. A full stomach can be a game changer, especially during that first period chem class. I suggest a decked-out bagel, orange juice, and a slice of banana bread for the road.

     3. The nurse has snacks (for emergencies only)

Just in case you decide to completely disregard my meal advice, Summit’s one and only Nurse Pam has a snack stash that can hopefully tide you over until lunch. Disclaimer: using the nurse as a resource for food should be a short term solution, not a long term habit.

     4. There are other places to go lunch than The Grove

The parade of students marching to the grove for lunch everyday never fails to amuse me. I understand needing food and lacking a car, but for those of you that pack a lunch… I promise there are cooler spots to eat. Some of my favorites include: 

  • The hill overlooking the parking lot
  • Upper C hall perch
  • Discovery park
  • The grass by the tennis courts
  • Thump! 

     5. Actually train for the 5k

It’s better to just accept your fate now…the Freshman 5k is a huge rite of passage at Summit. When Barker says run, you run. The process sucks and running is god awful but it’s better to be in shape than have to run 3 miles in the heat without any prior training. Pro tip: have a solid playlist set aside for running days. Seriously, you’ll thank me later.

     6. Don’t be afraid to ask questions

I couldn’t count on my fingers the amount of times asking a teacher a question about a homework assignment has saved my life later that night. We’ve all been through at least a few school meltdowns, so I know I don’t have to explain to you how exhausting they are. Clarifying questions are quite literally the golden solution to save you from tears and get you to bed on time.

     7. It’s okay to need a break

There’s no shame in admitting that sometimes you’ve reached your max. Don’t get caught up in the stress of missing a class here and there. Mental health should be your top priority, not getting the best attendance award at the end of the year.

     8. Wear what you want

Wear what you feel comfortable in. I’ve wasted too many mornings trying to figure out how to look a certain way. It always just ends with me feeling awkward and the day seems to drag along. Trust me, you’ll get far more credit for branching out and wearing what feels like you. 

     9. Get yourself some colored highlighters

The amount of notes you’ll be required to take during your high school years will undoubtedly increase the older you get.* Might as well make it feel like a minor art project instead of a tedious undertaking. COLORS ARE YOUR FRIEND! 

*Always take notes. Always. 

     10. Never say storm cat on three

Our school’s mascot has been a cutthroat debate for years. First the storm man, then the storm cat, now just… storm? For more info, read this article:

The basic rule of thumb here is to keep it short and sweet. Stick with Storm!

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About the Contributor
Iben Orton
Iben Orton, Opinions Editor
The wild Iben has recently been spotted in the Pinnacle news room. Reports from local journalists describe that the beast has been spending all of her time underwater, listening to music, and watching The Book of Life. Iben consumes exclusively orange juice and pasta for sustenance, a diet that fuels her competitive nature and sarcastic tendencies. In order to summon her, one only needs to press play on Just Dance: Ghostbusters and she will appear, completing the dance perfectly with her eyes closed. In the event of an Iben encounter, approach with caution and always have raw tomatoes on hand. They are her kryptonite.

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