Your “Official” Guide to Life at NVOT

Everything you need to survive your time at NVOT
Your “Official” Guide to Life at NVOT

High school can be both the best and worst time of your life. While having both a social, academic, and athletic life, it can be hard to fight your way through your classes. It’s definitely not easy, but you’ll adjust with time. Here are some NVOT-exclusive tips that will help get you accustomed to what being a knight is all about.

Set up your email inbox. You get at least ten emails every single day, which, without maintenance, can make it impossible to see important updates and announcements teachers give you. Ms. Massaro, one of NVOT’s history teachers, gave many of the upperclassmen the tip to set up their inbox in her very useful tech guide, “Ms. Massaro’s tech tips.” Setting up your email so forums, advertisements, and primary emails are all separated to make it a lot easier for you to never miss an important email. 


Put money on your ID instead of carrying cash. The lunch line is like a war zone. People cut, shove, and it’s essentially a free-for-all. You don’t want to be fumbling with cash while trying to keep your place in line. It’s easier for you to punch in your ID number on the keypad instead of waiting for your change. Also, keep your eye out on how much money is left in your account. Going into debt is never fun. 

Use the courtyard. Freshmen don’t realize how useful cutting through the courtyard is until later on in their high school career. With the limited amount of time we have during the passing periods, it’s a lot easier to cut through than book it across the school to your next class. The courtyard isn’t just there for decoration; it’s really functional!

Don’t block the hallways. We only have four minutes to get to our next class, and would rather be on time than accumulate a bunch of lates. It’s nice to catch up with your friends, but it’s really not favorable to do it smack in the middle of the hallway. It’s best to keep things moving so the hallways don’t turn into the entrance to the George Washington Bridge during rush hour.

Make class group chats. It sounds like a given, but it’s really something that helps throughout the year. It’s a place where you can ask questions, help each other out the night before tests, and even get closer as a class. Nothing brings people together more than mutually freaking out about the end-of-quarter summative at 3 am. It can also help keep your teacher from answering the same question 15 times. 


Check the weather app before coming to school. As we all experienced the first couple of days, the weather plays a huge role in how happy you are. There will be days you wear a nice outfit expecting to feel your best, yet you sweat through everything. It’s important you dress for the weather because sometimes both you and your teachers can’t do anything about what mother nature gives us. 

The F hallway air conditioning is no joke. Bring a zip-up or something to wear if you have class in the F hallway in the new wing. It’s always cold, and it’s hard to focus on whatever you’re learning when you’re shivering and chattering your teeth. Save yourself from catching a cold by bringing something to cover up just for those classes. 

Say hello! For most people, it’s the first time meeting new people from the other three towns. It’s going to be scary seeing all these new faces that seemingly look like they have an established group of friends already, but trust me, deep down, everyone’s a little nervous and afraid of speaking up. Say hi to the person sitting next to you in English or math. Who knows, they may become your new best friend. 

Don’t be too ambitious. Control what you can control. With the wide selection of classes NVOT has to offer, it’s easy to get swept and try everything your heart desires. While it’s nice to have a big ambition, you may not be able to handle everything you decide to do. Taking all AP and honors classes looks impressive, but it requires a lot of time management and flexibility. If you can’t handle it, it’s okay to take CPE or CP classes too. Whatever works best for you is what works. 

Don’t forget to sleep. Sleeping is a crucial part of being able to survive high school. There will be days you need to stay up to study for big tests or finish projects that make up large portions of your grade. That’s inevitable, but make sure you at least leave a couple of hours to sleep and reset your body. Coffee and energy drinks can only carry you so far. You don’t want to be sleeping through your classes or while warming up for practice. That never ends well, trust me. 

Communicate with your teachers. Your teachers are people just like you and me. They understand that life comes with unexpected twists, and during those moments, their assignments are the last thing on your mind. Don’t try and sugarcoat it with a flimsy lie. Be upfront about it in an email or come face to face to explain your situation. As long as you keep them in the loop, they’ll be more than happy to accommodate and try to help you through the situation. 

*Be prepared for Mooyah to spell your name wrong.* For the juniors and seniors who can go off campus for lunch, Mooyah is a popular place to go for burgers and fries. The workers are always so sweet and patient, but just don’t be too surprised when they hand you a receipt with a name that’s not yours. It’s a part of the experience and makes your lunch just that much better. 

High school isn’t as scary as it seems. With these tips, your time adjusting to NVOT should go by relatively smoothly, and you’ll have one less thing to worry about. The year goes by extremely fast, so enjoy it while you can. Good luck!

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