Welcome to Windsor Secondary
Dear Grade 7's,
We are very excited about your upcoming transition into secondary school at Windsor, yet we are saddened by the current circumstances in that we cannot meet with you in person to introduce you to your new school. We are confident that you will settle in nicely and soon forget any worries that you may have in making this milestone move into Grade 8. Just so that you are aware, it is normal to feel a little worried when making the move to high school, everyone has those first day jitters. We want you to know that you are well supported at Windsor. You have a team of counsellors, educational assistants (EA’s) and administrators here to support you every step of the way. Your Grade 8 Counsellor next year will be Ms. Sue Maquignaz (pronounced Mac-in-az), but please know that the rest of the counselling team is here to assist as well in any way that we can. Simply ask!
In typical times we normally have elementary schools come up to Windsor for either an afternoon or morning to give you the opportunity to visit a few classrooms, participate in some helpful transition activities and finally to give you a tour of our beautiful school. In place of this we have created a Video Tour of our school (please see below) and provided you with some of the more important transition activities to do at home. We hope that you enjoy these activities which will help you get a head start for Grade 8 in September. We look forward to meeting you in September. In the mean time, stay safe and enjoy your summer with family and friends.
1. Watch the Windsor School Video Tour
2. Gr. 8 Student Schedule
On the very first day of school in September you will receive your student schedule that lists all of your classes, teachers and classroom numbers. Aside from seeing your friends, this is the second best part of your first day. We are not sure how the school schedule will be in September yet, so please know that as soon as things are more concrete, we will let you know. We do still plan on having just grade 8’s and a parent/guardian/grandparent to come to Windsor to find your classes without any other students from older grades to be here. You will not need to bring anything on the first day, and you will receive your timetable, your agenda and a combination lock for your locker from your homeroom teacher. You will find out who your homeroom teacher is from the lists posted alphabetically.
3. How to Open a Combination Lock
After receiving you student schedule you will also be assigned your very own locker, on each locker is a combination lock. At first it can be a bit tricky but after a few attempts you will get the hang of it in no time. In order to give you a head start we have attached some simple step by step instructions as well as an instructional video. Remember, practice makes perfect, spend 10-15 minutes on your first day and you will get this in no time. Lastly, remember to keep your combination code (3 digit number) private, don't share it with friends as this is your place to keep your belongings safe. If you happen to forget your combination code the ladies in the front office can gladly help you.
Combination Lock Tutorial Video Link
4. Learn from the Pros!
Below is a helpful document prepared by a team of our current Grade 8's, have a look and get a head start on some need to know info!
A) Be prepared: After you receive your timetable, have your classes listed in your binders. If you are absent, be sure to check your teacher’s website so that you can get a jump start on missed work. It is up to you to find out what you missed when you are way.
B) Be successful:
- Attend and participate in all classes
- Plan a regular time to review/study each night (20-30 min recommended in grade 8)
- Come to class with all necessary supplies and books
- Leave your cell phone in your backpack, turned off
- Balance recreational (outside) activities with schoolwork, don’t overcommit
- Actually use your agenda, keep it on you
- Keep your lock combo a secret to protect your stuff. Buy a lock to use for PE class change room, but don’t leave it there.
- Keep valuables in your locker, and maybe leave the heavy books in there too.
- Don’t even tell your best friend your locker combo… best friends can change!
- Write your classes into your agenda
- Keep a copy of your timetable in your Day 1 and Day 2 binders, and give a copy to your parents for their reference (for making appointments, etc.)
- If you get lost, ask an older student, teacher or counsellor for help.
- Build new friendships by joining clubs and teams, smile, say hello, it all helps!
- Get to know your teachers, and feel free to ask them for help. Teachers like when you ask for help because it shows that you care.
5. Windsor Website
Below is the link to the Windsor Website and some helpful links to help you get more familiar with our school. Remember the best way to meet new friends who enjoy the same things that you do is to join the extra curricular programs. Our experience is that the more students get involved at Windsor, the happier they are and the better they do academically.
Windsor Secondary Website
6. School Supplies
There is no list of prescribed items that you will need. We recommend that you have some of the following, although some teachers may have their own requests.
- At least 1 binder, with dividers for 2 courses each day
- Enough pens and pencils to get you through the year, plus an eraser for math
- Lined paper for taking notes, 3-hole punched to go into a binder
- Calculator (basic)
- More and more students are bringing in their own laptop, so that is up to you
7. Common Questions and Answers
A) How will I find my way around? The room number of your class tells you which floor your class is on. For example, room 406 is on the 400 floor. There are signs above the doors leading to the floors.
B) Where are we allowed during lunch? You can be anywhere on school property, including the field. We just ask that you pick up your garbage as classes are on the field after lunch, and we have a world class turf field.
C) How much harder are the classes? WAY HARDER! Just kidding. As long as you are organized, and plan to do about 20 minutes per night of homework or review (longer if you miss a night) then you will be fine. As you go up in grades, the time you need to spend will go up as well.
D) What if I don’t understand the work? If you ever need help, there are many ways to get help: ask your teacher either during class or outside of class time, attend Homework Club either before or after school as drop in (every day except Wednesdays) from 8-8:30 or 3 – 3:30 in room 303 or the library lab. Anyone is welcome, and EA’s are there to help.
E) How long does it take to get used to my schedule/timetable? You will find that by the end of the 2nd week, you will have the swing of things. However, always have a copy of your timetable on you so you can check. Then, you just have to ask people “what block is it now?” if you are confused, and you just check your timetable. Everyone will have a different schedule/timetable!
F) Will I have enough time to eat? Can I eat in class? Most teachers do not allow for food in their classrooms, just water bottles. You will have time between classes to eat, so make sure that you have food on you (and not in your locker) if it is too far out of your way. There is NOT enough time to buy food from the cafeteria in between blocks 2 and 3 of the day. There is a 15 minute gap between 1st and 2nd block, and there is lunch between 3rd and 4th blocks. Plan to eat in the 15 minute break at 9:50 to get you through to lunch time.
G) Is bullying a problem at Windsor? Generally, no, not like they have in the movies! There may be some rare conflict between classmates in your grade, but older students tend to tell us when they see anything sketchy, since bullying is not tolerated, and our mature students tend to help calm things. Bullying is not something that we usually need to worry about. However, if you feel uncomfortable in any way, please let your counsellor know, confidentially if you wish, and she will keep your name private. Most bullying is stopped by bystanders (other students or teachers) on the spot.
H) What if I am having a really bad day or I am upset by something? Arrange to see your counsellor, Ms Maquignaz, at any time of day.
I) What if I have an appointment outside the school during the school day? You must have your parents call the front office to excuse you, and you must sign in and out of the front office. If your parents forgot to call in, the office will let you call on the spot to confirm. You are not allowed to just leave early or arrive late. If you are feeling sick, you can call home to be excused to go home (or the office can help with that).
J) Can I bring my cell phone to class? If you bring in a cell phone, be prepared to have it turned off and not seen during class time. Some teachers will provide a “parking lot” to place your phone in, turned OFF, for the duration of the class or until the teacher gives permission to use the phone. In some rare situations, some teachers allow students to use their cell phones for certain times of the class.