I know, I’ve been there. It’s your break. That’s supposed to actually mean taking a break from being a student. For many of us, this is generally the case. We spend the week relaxing, but we stay on top of our school work. If you are staying put over reading week, check out these tips for putting the “read” back in reading week. However, going on a trip or vacation is a different story. You know there is work to do, but you also want to enjoy what you spent multiple paycheques on. Here are some tips for how to remain a student while you are away.
Don’t Forget that You are Still a Student
As great as it would be if everything stopped moving and all your school stress disappeared during your trip, this isn’t the case. It is important to remember that you are still a student and your professors, unlike many high school teachers, aren’t concerned with your vacation interrupting your work. The expectation is still there from professors (and you should have this expectation of yourself as well) that you will study. If you have a group project ongoing, your group members, particularly, don’t want to take on your portion of the work in your absence as I’m sure they would love to be away too.
Use Breaks Wisely
After a day of exploring, my family always leaves about an hour for relaxation before dinner. Perhaps use some spare time to study cue cards or plan the outline for your upcoming essay. Alternatively, if you are someplace warm, you can do some course readings while you enjoy the sun. If not, you can read during those uninformative car trips down highways or on the plane.
Leave Textbooks at Home
Instead, save room in your carry-on for an extra bathing suit. This doesn’t mean you can’t do any work. Course readings are a great task to get done on vacation, but simply photocopy the necessary pages or read them electronically. Plus, reading can be relaxing – even if it is for school. If you know that you will have a lot of work to do upon returning home, you could always read ahead as well to save time later.
Complete major readings or projects requiring software before the reading week, if they are due immediately after. Instead, bring pre-prepared cue cards, finished printed essays for editing, or do project planning for something due later. If reading week falls right in the middle of midterm season; make sure to plan your studying!
Remember to Enjoy Your Trip
Remember that while you are still a student, you are also on vacation. Keep this in mind, but enjoy your time. This vacation is another way for you to keep positive during school stress – use it as such.
Going away over the reading week does not have to cause stress. You will succeed at remaining both a traveller and a student with a little time management and prioritization. Have fun! You deserve it.