Are summer assignments necessary?


Americans work an average of 34 hours a week.

High schoolers spend an average of 17.5 hours a week doing homework, plus the 35 combined hours at school for the five school days of the week. If you total those numbers up, teenagers exceed the average hours of a full-time job.

In five days, these numbers will lose their meaning. In five days, we could be spending 17.5 hours a week at the beach or 35 hours not at school. In five days, we will no longer have the full-time job that is school.

This reality is clouded by summer assignments for those who have them.

If you are taking an advanced course next year, odds are that you have received a summer assignment. I already have two. While this could seem like an angering fact to some, to me it is not phasing. I am not surprised that I have to read 100 pages out of a textbook for APUSH and a book for English.

I am not surprised because this is what I signed up for when I enrolled in honors and AP courses next year.

I have heard the slew of roused remarks regarding summer assignments throughout the halls this past week, and I honestly don’t get the exasperation. While I’m not completely for summer assignments because, after all, it is our break from our full-time jobs, I can understand the point behind them. If I’m taking a college-level course, I will have to put in a little bit of work before the first class. An architect doesn’t lay out the plans for a building without first researching the best foundation for a skyscraper. It’s the same thing for summer assignments: we can’t be prepared for a college-level class without preparing beforehand.

Summer assignments usually aren’t a chore for me because I enjoy doing them. I looked through the table of contents in my American history textbook and actually smiled with joy; I was like a kid picking out their favorite gifts from a magazine. Only, my gifts were learning about the cotton gin and the Civil War. If you aren’t taking an advanced course for your genuine love for the subject like me, then the summer assignment will be boring. It will seem like an unnecessary amount of work on your summer break. But I don’t see it that way, and I don’t think summer assignments need all of the backlash they usually get.

While summer assignments aren’t everyone’s favorite thing, they can be accepted. They can be understood, and they can be completed. As you look forward to summer break, don’t let pages from a textbook loom over your head like a raincloud. Summer assignments aren’t gloomy, and they won’t rain over your head. If you accept the fact that they need to be done, you’re one step closer to completing them with success.