Do your Holiday Plans involve Learning? We have 3 Big Reasons Why They Should.
Scheduling time for learning during the holiday season isn’t just about tearing kids away from the video games and giving them something productive to do for an hour (although, it is about that a little bit.)
Scheduling holiday learning time keeps kids on track academically, maintains schools habits, and helps make the transition back-to-school post-holiday that much smoother.
Here’s why you need to schedule learning into your holidays:
1. Academic Momentum Can Disappear.
Typically, when kids return to school after time off, they struggle with getting back into the learning groove. Teachers spend valuable teaching time going over concepts that were taught right before the break. Rather then jumping right back into learning, students play the catch-up game.
Kids have already achieved so much this school year. They’ve studied for tests, handed in homework and assignments, learned new concepts, picked up new skills, and have challenged themselves academically. In other words, they’ve found their school groove; they’ve hit their academic stride. It would be a shame to let it slip now.
2. Exams are not that far off.
If you’ve got a teen in high school on the semester system, then you’ve got a teen who has finals coming up, quickly. By the time school reopens in the new year, there are just three weeks before exams begin. That’s three weeks that will be spent in a classroom, doing homework, and balancing other responsibilities. For high schoolers, the holidays are prime getting-ahead time. Breaks from school are an opportunity to make serious progress. In high school, every grade counts, and getting those top-notch grades gets more challenging every year. The concepts and theories get continually more complicated. In order to make those complicated concepts stick, students need to practice them repeatedly. Even on school breaks.
So, make use of the holiday time to get a jump on schoolwork, even if nothing has been assigned. Review challenging concepts. Read ahead in books. Review all class notes. Create a fake test. Holiday homework doesn’t have to be in-depth to be effective.
3. Routines and Habits Can Slide.
Yes, the holiday break throws a major wrench into the entire family’s routine. But the time off doesn’t just cause scheduling headaches for parents, it can cause students to lose habits and routines that they’ve developed so far this year. Bed times and wake-up times go out the window. Eating times fluctuate. The homework hour is all but unheard of. In other words, daily organized routines disappear. While it’s okay to take a break from the structure of the day-to-day over the holidays, research shows that kids actually thrive when they have a reliable structure
to their day. Maintaining school-related habits such as bed times, wake-up times, homework times, meal times, chores, etc. helps kids avoid struggling to get back into their routines when school starts up again and keeps them on track and happy all holiday long.