Summer vacation means months away from school, sleeping in, and family trips for students who attend traditional schools. There are long days of swimming or relaxing, or adventures with friends. It’s something that every school-aged kid looks forward to! But if you’re an online high school student enrolled in a self-paced program, do you get a summer break? And what does that summer vacation mean for you?
As an online high school student in a flexible, self-paced program, you and your parents determine your study schedule. That means you start your school day when it works best for you and you don’t necessarily follow the holiday schedule that students in a traditional education setting do. While you can study on Labor Day if you want to, or catch up on exams during Memorial Day picnics, the long summer days when your friends and family can take a break from work or school can have you feeling jealous. What does summer break mean to you when you don’t have to take a break? It’s all about balancing your studies with summer sunshine.
If you’re working toward a particular graduation date, you may be tempted to chain yourself to your desk and study non-stop. While you have the option to keep pushing forward in your studies through holidays and vacations, it’s important to remember that taking a break now and then is good for you. If you’re packing your brain with information at every available moment, you’re going to wear yourself out and that will eventually have an impact on your grades.
Summer break for you might not mean two months without classes, but it could mean switching things up a bit and leaving your desk – and computer – behind for a while. Before stressing that you will fall behind on your studies or that you’re missing valuable learning time, there are activities and events that you can use to supplement what you’re reading online. Trips to local parks, theaters, museums, or zoos and aquariums can help you see what you’re learning about in your classes in real life. You can also take time to develop hobbies, extracurricular activities, and even work – all of which can be great to have on college applications.
You know one of the biggest benefits of being an online homeschool student is that you can study where and when you want. In the summer, that flexibility allows you to move forward in your program while not missing out on the fun. You can take your laptop or tablet to your favorite cafe with access to wifi or print out your study materials so you can bring your notes to the beach to soak in some sun while you take in new knowledge. Besides getting fresh air, a change in your study scenery can help you refresh and get excited about what you’re learning.
Even though you don’t have to stop your studies for summer break with online classes, taking time off for a real vacation, whether that’s one week or two days, can help you relax and come back to your studies stronger than before. Taking a vacation could mean joining your family for a trip or just taking a week where you don’t log into your courses. Whatever it is, try to take your mind off of school for a while. Your classes will still be there when you get back!
In the end, as an online homeschooler with James Madison High School, what summer break means for your education is completely up to you and your parents. With no due dates or scheduled class time, you can decide what’s best for how you learn. Whether that means following a traditional public school calendar and taking a break from coursework from June to August or just taking a week off to refresh, you’re in control. Either way, your teachers and academic advisors are still available throughout the summer to help you with questions and concerns. Learn more about the academic support available to you and connect with your teachers and fellow students online today!