Do this over summer to get a head start on next semester

It’s finally the summer holidays! While it’s important to take time off and look after your mental health, it can also be helpful to do a few small things during the summer break. This will give you a leg up when school starts up again this year (maybe even in person!) so that you don’t get stuck in a cycle of stress and procrastination once the academic workload begins to increase again. 


Here’s what we’ve found helpful in our academic careers:

  1. Read a book (or two or more!) 

  2. Brush up on those research skills

  3. Keep using your writing muscle

  4. Create a quick new habit or routine

  5. Get set up early for classes




Yup, no surprises there! Summer reading is and will always be a thing. Whether you’re an avid reader or not (good time to get into it over summer!) try reading a variety of books over summer. 

Check out this interactive summer reading list from the New York Times with 73 books in all different categories. 


You can read a book for fun or also use it as an opportunity to reflect more deeply about what you’re reading and begin to observe and analyse the text. The story, the themes, the characters, etc. Keeping your reading active is one way to make sure you’re more prepared to engage in your work once summer is over. 


Choosing your books can also be about the areas you want to improve in your writing? 

  1. Want to boost your creative/story writing skills then read more fiction.
  2. What about your persuasive skills? Read great speeches and autobiographies.
  3. Worried about your argumentative essay skills? Read research papers or journal articles in fields that interest you.
  4. Thinking of improving your narrative writing? Then read articles from publications like The New Yorker or The Atlantic, or any other journalistic magazines. 




The folks on the EssayJack team like reading historical fiction because the fictional stories woven into actual historical events are super intriguing for us. But also this gives us a chance to find out more about the actual events and learn to distinguish the truth from the fiction. And the only way to do that is to research and dig into the rabbit hole that is Google research.This is called “lateral reading,” when you read around a few different sources to confirm the facts of things. 




This is important. Exercise your writing muscle throughout summer and you’ll be thankful when you end up with the first essay assignment. Writing over summer doesn’t mean a five-paragraph or argumentative essay. It can be simple, like keeping a journal, writing short stories, or poems. Just keep writing! If you are struggling with an issue or are curious about a topic then research it and write your thoughts about it. Often, it’s by writing our thoughts that we force them to take shape. As author Joan Didion once said,I write entirely to find out what I’m thinking, what I’m looking at, what I see and what it means. What I want and what I fear.”


If you do happen to want to practice some academic writing or just need a topic to write about, check out this endless list of essay topics from the NYTimes.  




Start something that anchors you daily to keep you focused and grounded. This should be something you can carry on when classes begin and those hectic routines take over again. It can even be something as simple as a daily post to your favourite social media platform or creating a short 1-minute video of (or listing down) the things that went well during that day. Keep it simple and small, something you can always find time to do (before classes, midday, or even before bed). 




Long before classes are set to resume, see about getting your supplies and a workspace set up. If you get it all ready in advance, there will be less to do when the school year is upon you. Oh, and you might just associate your new workspace with some fun summer memories before it gets associated too much with mid-term stress! 


However you choose to spend your summer, we hope you make the most of it by enjoying the break while creating the space and time to prepare for what lies ahead!

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