How do you explain to an introverted ninth grader that the best part of high school doesn’t happen in the classroom? That the school only really comes to life after the last bell rings.
Actors running lines for the fall play. The hammers of set-building. Click-click-click of cleats running through the hall to practice. Cheerleaders shouting. Choirs singing. Posters being illustrated for the next dance. Marching band trumpets blaring and that deep drumbeat echoing across the field in through the windows. Teams tinkering with robots, debating politics, inventing headlines for the school newspaper.
Just stay. Peek in the room. Pick something. Anything. Add to the noise.
Because after school, in those rooms or on that stage, they will be the first to know your name. To drag you to lunch tomorrow. To make this new school feel more like home.