The Precedent

Filed under Opinions, Showcase

Summer Assignments: What Gives?

The Bane of Every Procrastinating Student

Cameron Martin, author for this article and Opinions writer.

Cameron Martin, author for this article and Opinions writer.

The Precedent

The Precedent

Cameron Martin, author for this article and Opinions writer.


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With about one-third of students being in at least one honors or AP class, a lot of us are no stranger to summer assignments. One of the objectives of summer books and packets is to prepare students for the types of learning themes they will be tackling next year while reviewing last year’s content simultaneously.

But really, just how effective are these assignments? In some cases the content could be totally new, depending on the student, like calculus in the AP Physics C packet. How can a student who has never even learned what an integral or derivative is benefit from trying and failing a higher-level math problem, where, chances are, they won’t be corrected on it for a while.

And then there’s the problem with procrastination. The thing is, high school students are not exactly known for staying on track or having good time management skills. In high school, procrastination is the name of the game. But now it is time to get back on track.

It seems that the words “summer assignment” and “procrastination” were made for each other. More often than not, this happens: a summer assignment gets assigned before school gets out. The student thinks, I have plenty of time to do this, I don’t need to worry about it now. School gets out, and the student forgets all about the assignment until the last weekend of summer. Then they scramble and rush to finish the assignment, frantically cramming with SparkNotes and texting friends who had the same assignment asking for their answers.

I have plenty of time to do this I don’t need to worry about it now.

While some  may not want to admit it, procrastination has been the name of the game since freshman year, and probably will be up through graduation and into college. Every year we tell ourselves the same thing: that we will get on task, get our homework done the day it is assigned, and do it on our own.

The thing that most students do not even realize is that it’s now district policy for assignments handed out before break not to be due the day we return. The point of the new-ish policy, implemented in the last few years, is because of a question that has arisen among parents and students alike: our teachers are not working over break so why should our students? This policy also benefits new transfers who weren’t even aware of a summer assignment.

But do summer assignments really benefit students? Like, really benefit students? Immediate benefits include the preview of future curricula and anytime a math packet or a book reading is due, there will be time to work on it after school starts and a planned lesson.

Instead of ruining a relaxing vacation and creating unnecessary end-of-summer stress, it would benefit all parties involved to turn summer assignments into back-to-school assignments.

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The student voice of Perry High School
Summer Assignments: What Gives?