When students think of summer break, concepts like relaxation and vacation immediately pop up. And while it is important to use this time to take a breather, it’s also important that our hard work during the school year isn’t forgotten throughout the summer.
If you aren’t enrolled in summer classes, I know the last thing students (including myself) want to be doing is schoolwork, so here are some tips on how to keep your brain active during break without sacrificing free time or fun.
Exercise your brain
Playing video games promotes brain stimulation and allows strategic thinking, logic and problem solving skills to shine. Download apps that test your thinking, like Luminosity or Happify, as these are specifically made to exercise your brain. I personally use Duolingo, a free app where you can learn a new language in minutes in a fun way!
Use your phone less
Although this contradicts my first tip, if you’re not tech savvy then this is for you. Use mental math or pen and paper for simple calculations instead of your phone. Try using a map instead of GPS for directions. Talk to people face to face. Take a break from social media and aimlessly scrolling, take a walk instead, go on adventures without telling the whole world about it! This can bring a sense of peace and accomplishment when you forget to look at your phone every other minute.
Simple as that. Whether it’s the comics, the newspaper, a fiction novel or nonfiction piece, reading boosts your brain power, can increase relaxation, and can improve memory. Reading also helps lower stress levels, so maybe you should read during the school year as well!
Creating art allows your brain to practice motor skills and increases creativity. Try out a new recipe, make your own artwork, paint some furniture or a wall. After completion you will have yourself feeling productive and content as ever.
Travel and be social
Whether it’s to the new museum across the street or out of the country, it’s a good idea to get out of the house. Meet new people, enjoy different experiences and make new memories. You are bound to learn something about someone or somewhere, and it’ll give you a great talking point for future conversations. With that in mind, be social! Reach out to an old friend, make new ones; every person in your life has something you can learn about.
If you don’t have a summer job or would like something fulfilling on top of a summer job, volunteer work is perfect. It is an incredible sensation, knowing you helped out a person, animal or habitat in need. Both the giving and receiving parties benefit from volunteer work, it’s great on resumes, builds new experiences and new friends, and keeps your body and brain busy.
Summer break allows endless adventures, whether it’s simple or complex such as exercising, going to sports games, starting yoga or going camping. There are plenty of options to keep your mind, body, and spirit as active as possible so that you don’t return to school having not exercised your brain for four months. Happy Break!
What do you plan on doing this break? Going anywhere exciting? Let us know!
Rebecca Caro is a first year student at Florida State University in Tallahassee, Florida. She is currently studying in the field of actuarial science and is part of FSU’s Honor Program, as well as a variety of clubs including the Women in Science, Math, and Engineering club. Although she takes academics very seriously, she spends her free time in a dance studio, at the gym and at the local library. She takes her physical and mental health seriously as well, and loves to take care of her body and mind. She has worked with children in the past for three years, and has enjoyed doing so. She also loves to help others and better herself – she is excited to achieve this in the future with Cengage.