Articles, College, School, Thinking Positive

The First Day, First Impression Checklist

With the first day of school coming up, many might feel anxious about making the best first impression possible. Maybe going back to in-person learning (for some) has made you want to try even harder to show how amazing of a student you are, or maybe you just want to put your best foot forward for another great school year. Either way, here are some tips to help you out!

My Tips

  1. Dress to impress

    1. Wear clothes that make you feel and look your best. You don’t have to wear a suit or dress by any means (unless you want to). But still try your best to look neat and clean.
  2. Show up with the right supplies.

    1. Notebooks, binders, pens, and pencils! And make sure you’ve done any homework or reading assigned
  3. Challenge yourself to answer at least one question or make at least one relevant comment.

    1. Just try to participate! Be as involved and as “plugged in” as possible. Teachers and professors work extremely hard to prepare lessons and get ready for a class, so show them respect by participating in what they’ve planned. They’ll appreciate your trying to learn something new even if it’s out of your comfort zone and/or interests.
    2. Know that you don’t always know what you like! Be open minded about your classes and really try to dive in. Maybe historically you’re not much of a science person, or you haven’t loved your previous English teachers, but give everyone and every class a true chance. You never know what might happen and what you might discover about yourself 
  4. Help others in the class.

    1. Start a class group chat to form study groups. If it’s appropriate, help someone next to you if they seem to have missed something the teacher said. 
  5. Bring a planner (either physical or on your device if they are allowed).

    1. Make a point to put in important dates for tests, project and assignment due dates, office hours, and anything else outlined in the syllabus that the teacher specifically mentions. If you have a conflict, bring it to the teacher’s attention. This can either be done when there’s a free moment in class, immediately after class, or in an email. This shows responsibility and a willingness to think ahead. This will make things easier (and more convenient) for both yourself and your teacher/classmates involved. 
  6. Start immediately on new assignments.

    1. Don’t procrastinate on any homework/tasks you need to do (like buying a textbook, sending an email, etc.) that were mentioned on the first day. Either get them done as soon as you finish your school day or make a plan of when/how you will accomplish these tasks. Don’t drag them out, especially if they’re smaller, easier things like filling out a contract, doing a class poll, or reading a chapter of a book or a short story. 
  7. Don’t be late!

    1. Make a point to leave fifteen minutes earlier than you think you need to. You never know what might happen on your way to school. And it’s way better to be a little early than a little late! 
  8. If your class is virtual, turn your camera on and treat the class as if it was in person (as much as possible, at least).

    1. Get dressed in the morning, sit at a desk or table, have your supplies out and ready, and stay engaged/communicating.

Check out more back to school articles from GirlSpring contributors!


Skylar Summers is a senior at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. She's passionate about empowering women through storytelling, writing, and creating visual media. To learn more about Skylar, visit her Instagram page @skylarsummers20 and watch her short films on her website (linked on her Instagram page)!

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