5 things to remember when starting at a new school

If the words ‘starting at a new school’ make your stomach flip, you’d be pretty normal. While it most likely won’t be easy, there are a few things you can do to make it a little better.

This can help if:

  • you're thinking of changing schools

  • you've just started at a new school

  • you're about to start at a new school.

Girls problem solving at school

1. It probably won't be amazing straight away

Change is always hard, right? It’s normal to feel weird and different in a new place, and to miss your old friends. Then there’s having to learn a different school layout, feeling nervous about talking to new people and being drained from adjusting to all this new stuff. Try to be patient: good things take time.

2. It helps to keep doing the things you like to do

Whether it’s playing music, sports, writing, drawing or anything else, keep it up. They will help you feel good, and they might help you to meet new people too. If there’s clubs for what you like to do (bands, sports teams etc.) - join them.

3. Talking to new people is hard - but worth it

The thought of putting yourself out there and talking to new people can get to the best of us. The good thing is that they’re likely to be curious about you because you’re new. Talk to anyone that looks friendly, but don’t be upset if you don’t become instant friends. Making friends takes time.

4. Your old friends will still be there

Just because you’re not seeing them every day, doesn’t mean you can’t stay close. Chat to them on the phone or socials, and make time for regular face to face catch ups too.

5. You can reach out if it gets too much

If all the changes are getting to you, find someone to talk to. They could be a friend from your old school, a family member, a counsellor or a doctor. Chatting with someone who’s distant from your situation can help.

If you would prefer to talk to someone anonymously, give Kids Helpline (1800 55 1800) or Lifeline (13 11 14) a call. They have counsellors available 24 hours a day.

What can I do now?

  • Learn how to make new friends.

  • Talk to someone you trust if you’re having a hard time.