Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Spring - Break - Rules -- Writer's Poke #429





When I was younger, I used to think that Spring Break was the time to party. I thought everyone was flying to the Caribbean or Mexico, drinking way too much, and doing way too many things they shouldn’t be doing. I guess I was somewhat jealous, too, because I never had a ticket to Spring Break hedonism.

I stayed at home. I looked at my class schedules, and I thought about how I could utilize the week to prepare for the rest of the semester. Sometimes it felt like I was the only student in the United States that bothered to use Spring Break this way.

The Spring Break that stands out in my mind the most, maybe, is the one that I dedicated to the Toni Morrison. I had a Toni Morrison/Richard Wright class, and I read Tar Baby, Song of Solomon, and Jazz. That was my Spring Break, reading those three books. When I look back on it now, I call it my Spring Break with Toni.

Now that I’m an instructor, I realize that most students don’t go on vacation during Spring Break. Most continue with their lives – working and taking care of their families and personal responsibilities. But when students come back from the Break, there is a noticeable change. Some students don’t come back. Some students come back, but they don’t put forth the same effort as they did early in the semester. Not many, or so it seems, return refreshed and energetic, ready to finish the semester with vigor. Is the Break to blame, or is it just the nature of Winter transforming into Spring?

What are the rules of Spring Break? That is, what are the rules that will allow you to utilize a break to its fullest potential?

“Rest is not idleness, and to lie sometimes on the grass under trees on a summer’s day, listening to the murmur of the water, or watching the clouds float across the sky, is by no means a waste of time.” – John Lubbock

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