Dealing with the Increased Pace of Spring Semester

When children return to school after the winter holidays, they aren’t in school for more than a few weeks before being off again for a couple three-day weekends. These vacations, though merited, interrupt the pace of teaching which may lead to misinterpreting how quickly teachers will move through material during the spring semester. It’s not uncommon for a student who was thinking. “I’ve got this” in January and February to become overwhelmed or fall behind in a matter of days in March or April.

Feeling overwhelmed or falling behind can be prevented by implementing a few strategies now in these early weeks in February. It may feel strange, or even unnecessary, if school has been going smoothly. But if your child is learning material that isn’t easy or you’ve heard his or her teacher is a tough grader, preparing now can make a big difference in how your child experiences school. These strategies also help students who rarely encounter difficulties because they promote responsibility, organization, and attentiveness.

  • Create the calendar for now through the end of the school year. It’s critical to see all of the dates your child and your family will be occupied. As due dates for essays and test dates roll in, you will be able to quickly gauge how much time your child reasonably has to study or complete assignments.

 

  • Review any concepts that were challenging. Take advantage of the slower pace and vacation time your child has now to make sure fundamentals are progressing. If needed, help your child meet with his or her teacher to reteach previously missed concepts.

 

  • Create a game plan now for what will be done if your child does start to feel overwhelmed by his or her coursework in March or April. The plan should include: when and how to contact the teacher, making sure you can be available to provide support or being ready to schedule a tutor, and knowing which activities on the calendar can be shifted to create more time for schoolwork.

Taking these precautionary steps now will help both you and your child remain calm and feel well prepared to meet any challenges that come with the increased pace of spring semester.

 

Rachel Fisher, MA
Executive Director