A FRESH Perspective

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A FRESH Perspective

Freshmen, Alicia Parsons, in science class.

Freshmen, Alicia Parsons, in science class.

Michelle Montalvo-Hernandez

Freshmen, Alicia Parsons, in science class.

Michelle Montalvo-Hernandez

Michelle Montalvo-Hernandez

Freshmen, Alicia Parsons, in science class.

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Freshmen are finding classes to be challenging and like the individuality the schedule has to offer, but they aren’t necessarily enjoying the classes that are required.

Couple this with getting made fun of, receiving four homework assignments on the same night, and being required to pass classes to fulfill graduation requirements make being a ninth-grader difficult. 

 “Classes are good, but I don’t like how freshmen have to take physics because it is not meant to be a freshman class,” freshman Sara Murray said. “It’s a junior class, so I just think that that is very confusing.”  

It’s been tough for freshman Alicia Parsons too, who has all A’s except for in her physics class. She believes that the class is very hard compared to others she’s taking. While the class isn’t heavy on homework, it’s the math part that makes it more demanding. She explained that high school means more responsibility from middle school. In addition to more work, she said she’s had to learn to balance and manage her time differently. 

Another struggle that arises for freshmen is adjusting to the longer periods. Maintaining focus for a sustained 76 minutes is often a task. According to Parsons, while she sometimes gets bored filling that time, she does appreciate the extra time given to complete what used to be homework. 

Unlike Parsons, there are students who don’t handle boredom or extra time as well. When students begin to struggle, there are times when a teacher has to step in.

‘‘Everyone at Cody High School wants to cooperate all the time. However, on those rare instances that we have a kid that does not want to cooperate with the classroom rules, I get down and talk with them and see what it is that is preventing them from doing what they need to,’’ Special Education teacher Buffy Hourt-Allred said. She explained that most often students act out when they don’t understand concepts or instruction. 

“It’s mainly for attention,” she said. 

Murray even explained her sense of confusion in some classes. “In some of my classes, I don’t really understand what is happening or what we are doing,” she said.  

Not all aspects of being a freshmen are bad. Moving from the middle school, they’re given much more liberty, which is something they all seem to like, especially the open campus lunch. 

“We can go off campus to buy lunch,” Murray said. “Students just overall have more independence to do things and choose what they want to do such as clubs and activities they are interested in.” 

Parsons likes the escape off-campus lunch provides. 

“You get to escape from all of the people and crowds in the mall or cafeteria. It is very relaxing to go to restaurants or even to the park to eat there or be with friends,” she said. 

Having more peers to interact with has proven positive too. Murray likes being able to talk to new people as well as her old friends. 

“In middle school, it was more cliquey and you had to stay within your group,” she said. “But in high school, it is more ‘spread out’ and everyone can talk to anyone.”

Murray’s two favorites at school: drama club and French class, two motivators for her. Being in drama requires that she keep her grades up. Learning French though is more long-term.   

“I really like my French class too because I really want to learn another language so I can travel abroad when I am in college,” she said. 

Students can choose from over 31 different elective courses to take as freshmen, which ultimately helps them decide upon a career after high school. Combine that with 20 different extracurricular activities that students can participate in. There’s a niche for every student.

“What I love about this school is that it is big enough that we can offer anything that kids need, but small enough that kids don’t get lost,” counselor Karen Day said.