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Wacky Wednesday helps South seventh graders prep for high school

South Williamsport seventh graders prep for high school

Transitioning from elementary school to high school can be anxiety inducing for students so the school counselors in South Williamsport have taken an innovative approach to making students comfortable with their new school building and excited to start a new adventure.

Sixty-nine students and 79 parents met with seventh grade teachers recently during Wacky Wednesday.

“Wacky Wednesday lets students have a successful transition into the high school,” said Lisa Laidacker, high school counselor for seventh through ninth grade. “It helps them get acclimated to the building and ease any anxieties they may have.”

Most students worry about having a locker and switching classes, she said. Giving them the chance to practice opening their lockers, pretend to switch classrooms and play games together alleviates some of those concerns.

Mountie Mentors, eighth grade students, and Teen Contacts, students in 11th and 12 grades, were present to guide the younger students through the evening’s activities.

Having older students interact with the seventh graders allowed them to connect with people who have been through the transition into high school.

Laidacker said meeting those students gives them the opportunity to ask questions and be a resource to the new students during the school year.

Meeting students in the high school gives them a few familiar faces to see in the hallways. The Mountie Mentors and Teen Contacts are there to help the younger students through their adjustment to their new environment.

Karen Fink, seventh grade teacher, sees firsthand how Wacky Wednesday has benefitted her students over the years. Many have a fear of getting lost in the high school and forgetting their locker combination.

“By knowing the layout of the high school and how to open the locker, students are more focused on classroom procedures and learning,” she said.

The transition program was supported by a community grant from Pennsylvania State Education Association for $750, a donation from the South Williamsport Education Association for $250.

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