What are your plans and thoughts about this Reading Week?
Last year I went to Cuba and that was wicked! For reading week this time around I will definitely be catching up on some sleep. This first half of the semester has been crazy! Family Day is on the Monday so me and the family will go do an escape room in Niagara Falls. I’ve done it before and we actually got out the first time, so we’re looking forward to keeping that tradition. Also, just doing some homework, catching up on some reading and really just relaxing. This semester has been intense but it’s been a good semester so far and I’m excited to see what the next half brings.
It’s really important to recuperate I suppose, we’ve really gone hard for the first six weeks of the semester and university is becoming increasingly more demanding so it’s important to catch yourself for a week. Realize that school isn’t your entire life, there’s things to do outside of it and it’s good to catch up with family friends and all that good stuff.”
I’ll probably look over some notes and try to relax for reading week; it’s been pretty busy lately. Last reading week I mostly spent time with my family. We went to America for a week so we may do the same this break. We have family there, in New York City and we got to hang out touring the city. Reading week is important to students because university is really busy and students need that week to just take a breather to catch up on classes that they may have not spent as much time on. I think if students are really falling behind on classes then maybe they should study but otherwise reading week should be a break to relax, spend time with your family and other people you may not have seen for a while because after reading week you have to get back on that grind.”
I will be in South Africa for reading week this February. I am taking a group of students from one of our programs, the Bachelor of Early Childhood Education. I’ll be working with them in township schools with teachers who have very little training and hopefully they can get involved in the work and see what it’s like to work in a different setting, being a minority in that setting, working with children who don’t speak the same language. It’ll it will be an experience for them.
Reading week is intended to be a break from classes for the students to enable them to focus on the work within those courses that they do. For the instructors, yes, we don’t have to instruct during that period, but it gives us a chance to catch up on some of the work that we do. So for some they focus on their academic writing, their publishing pieces that they’ve been working on, for some we schedule more meetings and for others they can attend a conference in that period of time. So it’s not a week off, it’s a week to refocus.”
I have a paper I have to finish for a conference, I have a bunch of papers I need to mark for a class, I have exams to mark and I don’t think my kid has the week off. For fun, I’m going to sleep in until about 7:30. This is more in the States but I’ve heard of cases where students will leave the Thursday of Reading Week, what they call “Spring Break”, skip all their classes go on vacation to Florida and not come back for as long as possible. Having assignments due the week back could be a mechanism to get students back and say ‘okay it’s over and time to get back into the swing of things’. I tend to avoid giving homework over reading week though.
It’s the hump part of the semester. I think we’re just sort of used to [reading week] and we kind of build into it. You tend to think to yourself, ‘I’m going to be so productive and get so much done’. I know there are people who are really productive over that time period, but I know for me, for the first couple of days I relax a little bit and as reading week comes to an end it kind of ramps up. It’s nice to have reading week, it gives me something to look forward to.”
My plans for reading week 2016? Well, I have rehearsal for the Brock Main stage that’s coming up. So from Wednesday until the end of the week we’ll have rehearsals for that. I’ll be able to go home for the Family Day to spend some time with my family because I haven’t been able to do that in a long time.
I manage my time pretty well, but you have to save time for fun. I have fun rehearsing and doing assignments – mainly rehearsing though. Times get really tough with stress and what not and I think for mental health reasons it’s great we have two reading weeks. In my first year we only had the one reading week so it’s great how have the two, one in each semester.”
I usually do placements, I do mine at elementary schools. I like working with children and it’s nice to have a full week with them because you get to know them during the week and then you want to go back after too because you miss them.
I always look forward to reading week to relax and then I end up making a schedule saying what I have to do Monday, then Tuesday and so on. Then I end up sleeping Monday to Thursday and end up doing all the work on the last weekend before everything is due. Then you feel more stressed after the break than you were when you began with.” (Deanna)
“In the past I’ve also done placements, but I like to just relax, catch up on sleep, spend time with my family and see my friends from home, all of the classic things.
I’ve only been back for three weeks and I’m already so stressed, anxious and not sleeping. It’s piling up so fast so it’s nice that there’s something to look forward to.” (Megan)
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