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Theory:

     It always seems that bad news spreads quickly, and in my case it was no different. Everyone in high school, including the teachers, was aware of my plight. I was embarrassed as if somehow I were responsible. What a way to start off at a new school! This was not the kind of attention I was looking for.
 
     The next day at school, people were acting even more strange than usual. I was getting ready for gym class at my locker. People were milling around me, asking me to hurry up. I thought it strange, but in the light of the past few weeks, nothing would surprise me. It almost seemed that they were trying to shove me into the gym — then I saw why. There was a big table set up with all kinds of stuff on it, just for me. They had taken up a collection and bought me school supplies, notebooks, all kinds of different clothes — jeans, tops, sweatsuits. It was like Christmas. I was overcome by emotion. People who had never spoken to me before were coming up to me to introduce themselves. I got all kinds of invitations to their houses. Their genuine outpouring of concern really touched me. In that instant, I finally breathed a sigh of relief and thought for the first time that things were going to be okay. I made friends that day.
Explanation:
 
The narrator believed negative news would spread faster than positive news. It's because everyone from the narrator's new high school, including the teachers, heard about the terrible event (fire disaster), even though the narrator didn't say anything about it. The narrator felt embarrassed as if he was responsible for everything that had happened. He despised attracting such unexpected (negative) attention from the new school. The next day at school, it felt even stranger. Students and teachers acted strangely.
 
People crowded around the narrator as he prepared for his gym class and rushed him to the class. On the other hand, the narrator remained unaffected, despite it appearing strange that people were suddenly around him and conversing with him. He was very vexed due to the recent past week's instances in his life, so the narrator would not be surprised by anything. Also, the author assumed that the other students were pushing him to get ready for gym class as soon as possible. The narrator finally realised why he had been hauled to the gym class after having reached the class.

The narrator noticed a table set up within the gym class with all of his necessities. It seemed the other students had bought the narrator school supplies, notebooks, all kinds of different clothes — jeans, tops, sweatsuits. The narrator appeared to be having a Christmas day as he received gifts. The narrator was overwhelmed by the schoolmates' love and generosity.

People who had never spoken to the narrator in the new school before introduced themselves to him. The narrator was even invited to their homes. The narrator was touched by their lovable collections and heartfelt words.
 
The narrator's new friends.jpg
The narrator's new friends
 
The narrator had been feeling estranged from the new high school for the past few weeks, believing that no one was speaking to him. This must have caused the narrator to avoid interacting with the other pupils or to move away from them.

The narrator's perception that the new school was devoid of his former school classmates and teachers might have caused him to hate it. He did not make any effort to make new acquaintances at his new school since he was still grieving the loss of his previous school. And it had to be when others went forward to assist the narrator that he realised his error. His heart was touched by their selfless love and care.
 
After all of the chaotic, terrible events that had occurred in his life, the narrator finally drew a sigh of relief since something wonderful had occurred for the first time. The narrator made friends on that day. He hoped that everything that had gone wrong thus far would turn around for the better.
 
Meaning of difficult words:
 
S.No
Words
Meaning
1.
PlightA bad or difficult situation 
Reference:
National Council of Educational Research and Training (2006). Beehive. A House Is Not a Home - Zan Gaudioso (pp.49-54). Published at the Publication Division by the Secretary, National Council of Educational Research and Training, Sri Aurobindo Marg, New Delhi.