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The Southern Bell
The Southern Bell

Southern Bell's Editors in Chief Give Advice for 7th Graders

Meet our Editors in Chief and what they would tell their younger selves!

88 Views | Published December 21, 2023

Tags: #seniors #interview #editor-in-chief #seventh-grade-advice


Jasmine Persaud

The Southern Bell - Writer
(Jasmine Persaud) —

I had the chance to speak with our 2023-2024 Senior Editors in Chief: Dash Alschuler-Pierce, Fabia Khandaker, and Madeleine Fryling as they reflected on advice that they would tell the current seventh graders today!


What do you wish you had known when you were in 7th grade?

“I wish I had known I was capable of anything.” -Dash Alschuler-Pierce

“I wish I had known what a supportive school system South has- there are teachers and upperclassmen that are all willing and able to help students with any problem they may have.” -Fabiha Khandaker

“I wish I knew that I didn't have to be in every class with my friends to still maintain friendships. Clubs are a great space to hang out with and make new friends.” -Madeleine Fryling


Do you have any regrets about when you were in 7th grade?

“I regret not joining a sport. I never did sports because I was so busy with other things, but exercise and utilizing what the school offers in terms of athletics is super important.” -Dash Alschuler-Pierce

“I regret not joining enough clubs in 7th grade- although I got involved later on in my time at South, I wasn't involved in 7th grade- which would have been nice to create more friends and find which activities I enjoy from a young age.” -Fabiha Khandaker

“I regret taking my homework so seriously. Homework should be used as an opportunity to practice and learn from your mistakes-- it doesn't have to be perfect!” -Madeleine Fryling


What advice would you give to a 7th grader?

“I would tell a 7th grader to start a good relationship with their guidance counselor and to take as hard of classes as possible.” -Dash Alschuler-Pierce

“One advice I have for 7th graders is to be nice and close to your teachers. 7th grade is the foundation of your 6 year career at South and its essential to have a good support system and teachers that you can rely on.” -Fabiha Khandaker

“I would advise 7th graders to get involved in the community. Whether its through clubs, sports, community service or otherwise, getting involved in your community will not only be an enriching experience, but it will allow you to make new connections with peers and advisors, and set you up to take on future leadership positions.” -Madeleine Fryling


When you were in 7th grade, what was your biggest fear?

“My biggest fear in 7th grade was my math teacher.” -Dash Alschuler-Pierce

“My biggest fear was using the lockers- I hated the busy hallways and I hated the process of opening my locker and having the risk of being late for class. Instead I found a way around that and didn't bring a backpack to school and instead only brought a sling bag. However, this might not work for everyone so one thing you can do is time going to your locker more efficiently.” -Fabiha Khandaker

“My biggest fear was receiving poor grades. I had overly-high expectations for what sort of grades I should be receiving and it caused me to value a made-up numeric value over my own self-efficacy and personal strengths.” -Madeleine Fryling


What did you love most about 7th grade?

“I loved that I could get good grades yet not try at all.” -Dash Alschuler-Pierce

“I loved making friends in 7th grade. Don't be scared to say hi to the person sitting next to you- that person has the potential to be one of your closest friends for the rest of your time at South!” -Fabiha Khandaker

“I loved the newness of everything around me. Most things I was doing were things I was doing for the first time: the pep rally, lockers, clubs, 9 periods, multiple teachers, etc. Enjoy it! You will do this for the next 6 years and it will get easier but it will also get less exciting so enjoy it while it’s still all new and special!” -Madeleine Fryling


What did you dislike most about 7th grade?

“I always felt bored in 7th grade. I needed a greater challenge.” -Dash Alschuler-Pierce

“I really disliked changing for PE in 7th grade- still hate it! However, it gets more bearable over the years as you get used to it.” -Fabiha Khandaker

“I disliked having to use a locker. I couldn't get it open and was scared to ask for help so I would often carry around all my things all day instead of storing items in my locker. As a senior, I now hope that underclassmen ask for help because I don't want people to struggle in silence when there's often such an easy solution!” -Madeleine Fryling


What would you do differently in 7th grade?

“I would have tried more. I should have fostered good student habits.” -Dash Alschuler-Pierce

“I would've gone to more extra help sessions and gone to more clubs. I regret not being more active and always leaving at 2:43- dashing out as soon as I could.” -Fabiha Khandaker

“I would have tried to search for more volunteer and service opportunities. Giving back to the community is an important aspect of being a part of a community so I wish I would have started giving back sooner.” -Madeleine Fryling


Do you have any advice on “fitting in”?

“I would have tried to search for more volunteer and service opportunities. Giving back to the community is an important aspect of being a part of a community so I wish I would have started giving back sooner.” -Dash Alschuler-Pierce

“You don't have to "fit in". I promise you, you will find your group of people that understand you and people that you can bind with. You will go through so many friends and friend groups in these 6 years- but don't ever feel the need to change yourself or diminish your true self.” -Fabiha Khandaker

“The goal shouldn't be to "fit in" but to make friends that accept you. If you feel like you don't fit in, you're not alone. Everyone feels at some point like they're isolated or "other", but I promise that if you put yourself out there and try to connect with others, you will find your people.” -Madeleine Fryling


Do you have any advice on managing classes?

“Do your homework! Stay at school and just do your homework and don't go home until it is done.” -Dash Alschuler-Pierce

“It can be overwhelming having so many different classes so divide your study time and don't wait till last minute to study for exams or quizzes and always do your homework. The habits you build this year will aid you in the rigorous classes you will take next.” -Fabiha Khandaker

“Make a system! My system is a planner filled with important events/assignments/meetings, the date, and a little box that I can check off when I've completed it. There's no perfect system of organizing your time that works for everyone so you have to experiment a little.” -Madeleine Fryling


Do you have any advice on getting “good grades”?

“Take every opportunity possible for extra credit and do your homework. If there is an issue, email teachers formally before the assignment is due.” -Dash Alschuler-Pierce

“Take advantage of the agenda book and always plan ahead. it can be easy to burn out if you don't manage your time properly.” -Fabiha Khandaker

“You should never take a class solely because you think it will look good on a resume or will be impressive to peers. Take classes you are interested in, fit your own academic capacity, and will not put your mental health at risk. You do not need to be an expert in every subject, you just need to explore the things that interest you and focus on subjects that you plan to pursue in the future.” -Madeleine Fryling

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