summer boredom on a beach
Educational Advice

Beat the boredom this summer

The paradox of the summer holidays. On the one hand you’re eternally grateful for freedom from a dusty, ill-lit classroom after what seems like infinitely longer than 10 months since the last school year began. But for at least a few of those sunny (or not so sunny) summer days you’ll be faced with the worst part of the summer holidays… boredom.

As much as we all like to pretend that we had the best summer ever, deep down we all know that inevitably there will be at least few days spent sat inside, maybe in front of an old Jeremy Kyle re-run, wishing you had something – anything – to do.

Not only this, but once the holidays are over and term-time begins, you’ll likely find yourself wishing once more that you had a spare moment to yourself, as you work overtime catching up on all of the academic information that seems to have evaporated over the summer. So – how might we kill these two birds with one stone? A neat resolution is to keep in touch with education over the summer.

Watch foreign films

Watching foreign language films will help you develop a vocabulary full of useful day-to-day terms. Unlike textbooks, which only teach you how to ask about the weather. What’s more, some of the best directors in the world create foreign films: see Pedro Almodóvar (Spanish) or Pierre Salvadori (French) for starters.

Go to a museum

Socialising the same way week-in week-out can get extremely boring over the summer. How many times can you visit the same park before you can’t stand the sight of it? And all of the exciting traditional days out – paintballing, go-karting, laser quest – can be pretty pricey pastimes. So why not go to one of the UK’s hundreds of free museums? Depending on where you choose, you can brush up on your Science, History or Geography. Plus, if it all gets a bit too educational, you can always spend some time in the kids’ section or the gift shop.

Get experimenting 

All our favourite American TV sitcoms have introduced us to the wonderful world of the science fair. Experiments such as the potato clock and the papier-mâché  volcano. British school experiments pale in comparison. The most exciting thing we ever made in chemistry was nylon, and any explosions were accidents (at least from the teacher’s perspective). So this summer wheel yourself over to ScienceBob, where you can follow instructions to try out all of the best and messiest science experiments, including building your own HOVER CRAFT. Enough said.

Get some apps

Maths is one of the easiest subjects to forget, largely because we do tend to have calculators on us at pretty much any time of the day. What’s more, a lot of things we might want to calculate, such as which chocolate is cheaper per 100g in the supermarket, are often done for us. Luckily the digital world appreciates this problem, and there are a plethora of apps you can download to help you keep your numbers skills up to scratch. The best examples are Mathdoku (a more interesting and challenging version of Sudoku). And MADS 24 (a mobile version of the 24 game, possibly the best maths game ever invented).

Listen to audiobooks

So many English students dread the question “have you read the book?”. They will stay up the night before a test reading everything Sparknotes has to offer because there aren’t enough minutes to get through 400 pages before 9am. So instead of promising yourself all summer that you’ll definitely start reading tomorrow, download your text as an audiobook. You can get through the whole thing in minimal time, with minimal effort. If you’re lucky you might get to listen to Stephen Fry’s beautiful voice, all in the name of academic progress.

Now that’s a Summer well-spent.

Written by Sophie V.

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