Eighth grade is an important year. Students have finally reached the top of the heap. They have earned the right to some special privileges and are the envy of all younger students.
At the same time, they are on the threshold of a new beginning. They have selected their high schools, and in September they will embark on a new world.
Students at St. Andrew's Country Day School share their thoughts on this most special year.
Dress up, dress down
Eighth grade is a special year for me because our class receives many special privileges.
One of the privileges is dress-down days. On dress-down day, which happens once a month, we get to pick what we want to wear as a theme. Some themes are Twins Day, Blue Day, '50s Day and Clash Day. In order to dress down, we have to pay $2.
This year, we got to pick out a sweat shirt. The sweat shirt has every eighth-grade student's name on the back. We are allowed to wear the sweat shirt each day to school. This privilege is only for the eighth-graders.
During our eighth-grade year, we have to choose which high school we plan to go to next year. We are allowed to shadow at the high school we choose. The teachers help us study for our entrance examination.
The school holds special events for eighth-graders. Some of the events are a dinner dance, a trip to Toronto to see "Phantom of the Opera," and graduation.
One of the most important things about being an eighth-grader is memories of doing special things with my friends at St. Andrew's. The things I remember most are parading around the school with our Halloween costumes on, volleyball games, soccer games, dances, parties, sleep-overs with friends and other special moments.
Altogether, I believe eighth grade is my favorite year at St. Andrew's.
-- Kim Wilson
Eighth grade is a special year because we are finally considered the upper-class students. This title grants us special privileges and entitles us to exciting events.
During this year we get to do a lot of different things. We receive St. Andrew's sweat shirts that are a great advantage over the plain uniform shirt. Anyone seeing us in these sweat shirts will know we are eighth-graders because on the back side of the sweat shirts it says "Class of 1998." Also, it states all of the eighth-graders' names and our homeroom teachers.
We get to sell candy bars to raise money for the eighth-grade graduation. The money from the first box is given to the eighth-grade account. We get half the amount of money for each box after the first. For the first time selling candy bars, I sold 120 bars.
We also have class representatives who decide what dress-down days we are going to have, like if it's going to be Clash Day, Twin Day, Blue Day or other weird dress-down days. More dress-down days are another privilege that the eighth-graders get.
When we go to Darien Lake, since the eighth-graders are the oldest, we get to stay an hour longer than everybody else. Responsibility also comes with being an eighth-grader. Our parents allow us to do more things by ourselves, and they might even let us take more money to Darien Lake.
When we are at lunch, eighth-graders get to sit wherever we want. We can even sit with the girls in lunch. We also get to walk to all of our classes by ourselves because our teachers believe that most of us are responsible. And in the morning we get to visit our friends in the other homerooms.
Also during this year, we get to shadow at high schools to see what one we are interested in. I shadowed at St. Joe's with Cory Black and had a great time. I got to go to all of his classes and I got to do whatever I wanted.
At the end of the eighth-grade year, the eighth-graders take their exams earlier, which means we get out of school earlier. We get to graduate from St. Andrew's. Then we know we can get into a good high school. Because we received a good education at St. Andrew's, we can get into the high school of our choice.
The yearbook is the most important part of being in eighth grade, because it will be a remembrance of the years that I have spent at St. Andrew's and all the great friends I have made.
There may be many privileges in eighth grade, but if you think about it, it is a very sad period of time near the end of the year. When we have our graduation and dinner dance we know that we might not see many of the friends we have made again.
-- Matthew Rice
Endings and beginnings
After going to St. Andrew's for all of these years, it's finally coming to an end. This is the most special year ever.
It seems like only yesterday that I came to St. Andrew's, and now it's my final year here. The younger students are looking up to us. Many things we do are copied by them, and it feels good to be looked up to. It is our responsibility to set good examples for them before we leave.
We get many privileges that we never had before, but have always wanted. We get a special dress-down day once a month, which is really nice. We get our pictures taken, and they will appear in our yearbook. This is something that we will all look back upon as a remembrance of our grammar school years.
Also, there are many special events at the end of the year. Of course, the most important one is our graduation. I'm looking forward to it, but I know how much I will miss everything about St. Andrew's. Next year, I won't see the same familiar faces that I'm so used to.
We also have a graduation dinner, which will probably be one of the last times we're ever going to spend time with each other as a whole. It is going to be hard to imagine what it is going to be like next year.
We can't take any of these days for granted, because it is going to rush by, as everything does. We have to enjoy ourselves. The end of the year is going to bring tears to many of our eyes. But soon we will start fresh again and make new friends. It's going to be important not to forget all of our good times shared with our friends and teachers.
Our eighth-grade year will be a memory forever, which is why we should make it the most special year of all.
-- Jennifer Bufalino