10 Fruitful Things To Do the During School Holidays

Today is the last day of the SA2 Examinations. Most of our students except our senior students who are still sitting for their IGCSE and A-Levels exams (hang in there seniors!) are in jubilant mood celebrating the end of examinations for the school year. I bet that most of them are thinking of plans to do during the holidays. Play computer games, go on a trip with the family, watch movies, so many things to do!

Yet, apart from all the fun, relaxing (and maybe tiring) things to do, there are also a lot of other fruitful things to do that may benefit and help you to grow during the holidays. So here is a list of just 10 things that may be worthwhile to do during the holidays (instead of play, play and play all day long).

 

1. Reflect on the school year and set goals for the next school year

How to reflect? By asking yourself what were you weak on in the school year that just ended. Was it maths? Science? Be honest with yourself and write it down on a piece of paper. Similarly, reflect on your strong points and how you can utilise it better in the coming school year. Take some time to reflect on how you can improve your weak points and be better in the next academic year. Lastly, set realistic goals on how to improve your weak points. For example, you can set a goal such as “practice and revise science topic after it is taught in class at least twice a week”.

2. Learn a new Language

Learning a new language is always useful. For example, if you are into Korean Dramas, you may want to pick up Korean so that you can understand what your idol are saying directly. Isn’t that better?

3. Be a volunteer

This is something that is worth considering, especially for senior students. If you have a cause that you care about, you can find a worthwhile organisation to volunteer at. Such as helping out at an orphanage or home for the elderly. The effort that you put in as a volunteer can sometimes be of great help in your university application (if you are applying to prestigious university). More often than not, top universities are looking for a well-rounded applicants.

4. Learn a new skill

Having a new skill is always handy. In today’s digital age, there are tonnes of video tutorials for almost any skill that you can think of. The skills that you can pick up are numerous such as arts, cooking, sewing, martial arts, public speaking, etc. For those of you who wants a more formal training, Coursera is a good place to learn. You can get a formal certificate after you completed the coursework, which is always good for your CV.

5. Pick up a book and read

Reading a book is always good, always recommended. My personal favourite are books that are recommended by Bill Gates. It is often informative and enlightening (plus it makes me feel smarter every time I finished a book). Here is the link for the books.

6. Learn how to build or fix something

As mentioned earlier, there are so many instructional videos available. With just a search, you can learn on how to build/fix things. Personally I have learnt on how to build a website recently and it gives me great satisfaction after the project is completed.

7. Get a job or an internship or start your own business.

It is again beneficial for your CV for future university application. That aside, working in a company can also teach you values that will be very beneficial for your own growth. You will realise after working in a job, that money do not come by easily. If you have special skills such as a group of our senior students who are good with Photoshop, you can even start your own business. The experience that comes with it will be invaluable.

8. Spend time with your family

It is common knowledge that during school term, we may spent so little time with our own family. During the semester, parents are busy working, while we are also busy with school leaving very little time to spend together at home. It is also quite common that they bring work home, while we may be busy with homeworks and tests/examinations. Therefore grab this opportunity during the school holiday to spend quality time with your family even if it is just for the evening. Sometimes, just telling them that you are thinking of them will make a difference.

9. Improve your writing skills

It is inevitable that writing skills are crucial for academic success but even more so in the business/professional careers. One way to do this is to read more opinion pieces in good international newspapers such as The Guardian or The New York Times and try to capture the style and the way they package and express their opinions to get the message across. After which, you can practise by writing your own opinion pieces in your own blog. Get your English teacher’s opinion on how you can improve it further. That way, your writing skills will improve from time to time.

10. Develop good and healthy habits

The long holiday is also a perfect opportunity for your to develop good habits. A good habit will help you grow into a better person – it is as simple as that. Examples of good habits to develop is a commitment to keep yourself healthy by exercising 3 to 5 days a week for example. It is no secret that a healthy body will enhance they way your function on a day-to-day basis. Another good habit to develop is to ensure that your body have enough rest everyday (8 hours of sleep is said to be ideal). I know how tempting it is to spend all the night away playing Hearthstone or World of Warcraft during the school holidays. Do practise good discipline so that you are always fresh and alert the next day to do many other productive things during the school holidays.

That’s about it! I hope that the article is beneficial for you on how to best spend your school holidays.

 

 

Written by Dr. Peter Darmawan

Dr Peter received his PhD degree from the School of Materials Science and Engineering, Nanyang Technological University of Singapore. Having spent 23 years in Singapore, he has been through the rigorous and robust Singapore education system with exposure from primary school right up to university education. In addition, he has spent 2 years of post-doctoral research fellowship in National Institute for Materials Science (NIMS) Japan and another 3 years as a Research Fellow in Singapore under the NEW-CREATE Programme. As a scientist, Dr Peter has written numerous peer-reviewed research papers, book chapters and filed a number of patents.

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