When I was in 8th grade, my school didn’t have a locker for me, so I had to carry all of my books and papers with me to every single class. That’s not an existence you want, kids. If you have one, use your locker.
But some people misuse this crucial high school resource, and that’s a shame.
1. keep extra supplies like pens, pencils, and paper stocked. You never know.*
2. organize your books by morning/afternoon classes. What I did this year that was really helpful was take all my books for my morning classes and then switch at lunch. That way, you’re not rushing to your locker through the swarms of hormonal teenagers during your woefully short five minute passing period. This sucks a lot if you’re in a big school and your classes are far apart.
3. keep it clean. Don’t just throw trash in your locker and think oh I’ll get that later. It stacks up. There are a million trash cans in any given school. Use them. Otherwise, at the end of the year, you’ll be the jerk who needs a trashcan to yourself to clean your locker out.
1. Bring pictures. They’ll fall out, they take too much time to put up, and they’re not worth it. What are you, in a cheesy 80s high school drama? Leave Jesse McCartney at home. You can kiss his picture in the privacy of your own room. If you absolutely must, a magnetic mirror is ok.
2. Bring other crap. You don’t need to keep a cosmetics bag. You don’t need random odds and ends. You don’t need a bobble head. You don’t even need a dry erase board. School is for school. You and your books are the only things you’ll need.
1. If it’s a long locker, a cheap rack is helpful. Otherwise you’ll be constantly bending over to retrieve your books. The extra height is helpful and quick.
2. Food. Seriously, I wish I’d thought of this while I was still in school. Power bars, granola bars, pop tarts, whatever will keep. I packed a lunch every day for the past two years, and while I know that sometimes this isn’t possible, it was really helpful. Running to the lunch line so that you have time to get food and eat it is just too much of a hassle.
3. Some semblance of organization. Keep a class’s respective folder next to its textbook, so that you don’t have to hunt it down. Just grab them together and stuff them in a book bag.
4. An alternate form of book transportation. Some classes, schools, or teachers don’t allow backpacks in class. So a [strong] tote bag might be needed to transport books. This also decreases the likelihood that you’ll get your books knocked out of your hands. Yes, that actually happens outside of movies.
*Girls: bring your joys of womanhood supplies. Have extras. Other girls won’t be as prepared, and trust me, you’ll be their new best friend if you can lend out a tampon. It follows the same logic as having extra pens in class.