Going Into First Year: Expectations Vs. Reality

We show you how your expectations of going to high school are a little different compared to what really happens when you become a first year.

1. Expectation: Different subjects mean more homework and harder classes

Reality: You'll sample a few new classes in your first couple of years at high school but be put in a class based on your level of knowledge on the subject, so the coursework shouldn't get too difficult. A few years in, although you'll probably have to keep doing core subjects such as Maths and English, you also get to choose some of your favourite subjects to specialise in.

2. Expectation: Everyone will look like a part-time model, just like in the movies

Reality: Everyone at high school looks different and has their own body hang-ups. Believe it or not, attraction isn't based solely on looks! We all have confidence in different aspects of ourselves and as we grow older we learn to accept the way we look more and more.

3. Expectation: Lunchtime flashmobs are a regular thing

Reality: Ok, so though it might be pretty cool to study somewhere like High School Musical's East High, in high school everyone has their own talents and you can use that thing that you're best at in different ways, like getting involved in clubs or opportunities and honing your individual skills.

4. Expectation: You need to be one of the 'popular' people

Reality: Is being considered popular really what you want? Popularity in high school often doesn't mean much in the long run and is more about a certain image than actually being a friendly and well liked person. It's great to get chatting to lots of people but having a close group of friends and being a good friend is much more likely to lead to good high school memories than pretending to be something you're not just to look cool.

5. Expectation: Everyone will have girlfriends or boyfriends

Reality: Not true! You may never have even kissed anyone, but it's important not to feel pressured into doing something you don't want to do. Fancying someone is equally as difficult, but crushes come and go and soon you'll find yourself questioning why you even liked them in the first place!

6. Expectation: Everyone will have nicer and more expensive stuff than me

Reality: Having the latest trendy shoes or the newest gadget might seem like the be-all and end-all in high school sometimes, but just know that your parents, carers or guardians work hard to give you the best of what they can. If you really feel as though you don't have much money to buy new things, you could also look at getting a weekend job when you're a little older, such as in a hairdressers or doing a paper round. You can also check out our money tips to help you save and budget your money.

Remember, high school is a really exciting time where you can learn loads, find your skills, make new friends and develop as a person - so try to enjoy your own experiences and not compare it to what you've seen on television or movies.

Find out more about the differences between primary and secondary school.