Reminiscing about the last four years


Photo by Victoria Doti

Senior Jolie Graham signs the cheer mat, an ultimate goodbye tradition for cheerleaders. She wears an Indiana jacket, where she will be majoring in criminal justice.

The summer before I started Wootton as a freshman I couldn’t have been more excited or felt more grown up. My mother had attended Wootton and still talked about her time there. Then the first day of school came. I was still excited, but also nervous. The school seemed so big and I was totally intimidated. I didn’t know where my classes were and I kept getting lost. That only lasted two to three days and as I learned where to go I became more confident and less fearful.

The teachers I had in my freshman year were helpful to me and the other students as we transitioned to high school. I always asked questions to my teacher in the past and I found that my high school teachers were receptive to me and my questions. I felt like I was getting the hang of high school and getting into a routine and then – BOOM! The pandemic hit. I went from in-class learning to Zoom learning. I found this difficult. How seriously can you take your classes when you’re sitting in your bed in your pajamas? I realized I needed to move out of my bedroom and set up a workstation somewhere else in the house. This made things better, but, by no means was Zoom teaching and learning ideal.

When I finally had the opportunity to return to school, I ran, not walked. I was starving for in-class learning and the social aspect of high school. I was a cheerleader and that was a wonderful experience. I made great friends, many of whom I will continue to be in contact with for a long time. If a new student has the chance to join a club or sport, it’s a great way to meet and work with a small group of new friends. Most students here came from Frost, but there were some new students who came from Cabin John. It afforded me a new crowd of people to become friendly with. This school offers opportunities for students to join clubs or sports. A student should identify their interest(s) and find a club or sport to join. Having a group of like-minded friends in a club makes for good friendships.

In addition to the clubs, sports and social aspects of this school, I found I had a high school with amazing academics. When I returned from the pandemic, I knew I had lost some of my momentum and I now needed to push myself. AP classes, here I come. Wootton offers AP classes in all subjects. Try to take as many as you can handle without overwhelming yourself. AP classes are definitely harder and require more work, but you learn more and can even get college credit if you score well enough on the AP exams. Plan ahead which classes you have the most interest in and will be most advantageous for you to get into college.

My four years at Wootton were memorable. I would advise new students to enjoy every moment of their high school experience. Join that club or sport to have a group of friends, push yourself to take advanced classes, go to teachers for help or ask questions in class for clarification. I hope that one day I will be telling my own children about my wonderful experiences at Wootton just like my mom did.