How to Enjoy Spring Break Despite Upcoming Finals

By , March 20, 2012 8:42 am

[Study Tip provided by Becca Oetting, senior music education major in the Conservatory.]

I don’t know about everyone else, but I am past the point of being ready for spring break. Right now, it’s just about the only thing that’s keeping me sane! Going from mid-January to the end of March with no breaks is tough, and by the time spring break gets here I want nothing to do with school all week. However, finals are coming up. Each week, they loom closer on the horizon of my world. And while spring break is going to be a much-needed vacation for me, I also know I can’t completely forget about my classes. Being a senior and having gone through three spring breaks already- including one spent on the sunny beaches of Florida- I’ve figured out a few things that can help make this break much more relaxing overall. Then I can come back rested and ready to finish the semester.

The week before break (if I haven’t done this already) I sit down with all of my class calendars. I make a list of all the assignments/ tests that are due each week for the rest of the semester. This helps put everything into perspective. When I am done, I figure out how long it will take me to complete/ prepare for each item. This is an important step because you don’t want anything to sneak up on you. This next part is the not-so-fun part. During my free time the week before break, I work on all the assignments that are due the week after break- even if it’s not due until Friday. I may even take a large portion of the day on Saturday to finish them. One of my professors once suggested making a schedule for every day. Block out a couple of hours each evening to work on assignments. While it may be difficult to force myself to work on an assignment with a due date two weeks away, it will pay off in the end. When it is done, I don’t have to worry about it anymore! Now I have the rest of the break to relax, and I don’t have to worry about upcoming assignments. To me, this is a much less stressful approach to the break than putting it all off until the last day.

This year for spring break, I am going with the UMKC Wind Ensemble to perform at a convention in San Antonio. I have already made my list and am working on completing the assignments this week. By the time we leave, I will have them all done and won’t even have to take any homework with me. Instead of trying to do work on the bus, I can relax, watch movies, and chat with friends. And I can enjoy the fact that when we get back on Sunday night, I will be ready for the week ahead.

While not every strategy will work with everyone, it is my hope that this helps you get through the rest of the semester, and gives you a little relaxation during break!

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