Tips From An Orange County Academic Tutor: 6 Ways to Spend February Break

Some schools offer a full week off in February, otherwise known as ski week in colder climates and beach week in Southern California. Many students will simply have Friday and Monday off but for those who have a full week to spare, there are many productive ways they can spend it.


1. Relax  and recharge

This is a top choice for many students who are just trying to survive through the end of the academic year. Students who are not yet into their college prep years would be wise to simply take a break so that their brains are powered up to work hard through June.

2. Get organized

Students who are currently in middle school or high school will benefit from spending some time going through all of those binders, folders and piles of paper on the floor from semesters past. Now is a good time to get rid of any assignments that are no longer needed. Many students are digging through overstuffed folders at this point in the year and often lose current assignments, which leads them to fall behind.

3. Go SAT crazy

Students who are taking the SAT and ACT in May or June can use this week to take a practice test. It probably won’t be their first choice but it’s a good way to run some academic diagnostics to see if it’s time to consult an Irvine test prep tutor (READ: “How Many Hours of Tutoring Do I Need To Improve My SAT Score by 100 Points?”).

4. Make AP plans

The majority of students who are successful on the AP exams start their test prep no later than March 1st. Even if students are getting grades in the A range in their AP classes, the test is a whole other matter. Spending two or three hours this week will help students know what they’re in for and ensure that they can get at least a 3 if not better on the AP exams in May (READ: “Advanced Placement Exam Prep in the Competitive Orange County School System”).

5. Look at colleges

Any juniors out there who have not yet made plans to look at colleges should definitely think about doing that this week. Although private tours and interviews require an appointment, students who are simply looking to get a feel for the college campus lifestyle can join any of the university’s prescheduled tours.

Sophomores who are not quite ready to make a final decision about the colleges they want to apply to, might use this time to simply look at the local state college and get a feel for campus life. Sophomore year is certainly not too early to start researching colleges.

6. Complete some volunteer hours

Many students fall behind on their volunteer hours due to numerous academic and athletic commitments. If students are not going out of town during their break, it’s a good time to catch up on some volunteering. This doesn’t have to be an unpleasant activity; students are strongly encouraged to explore volunteer experiences that they are genuinely interested in. Although now mandatory, community service can still be heavily enriching. Call the local hospital to deliver flowers to overnight patients, enjoy caring for kittens and puppies at the local animal shelter, and show kindness by delivering sack lunches and hygiene kids to the local homeless population (READ: “Getting Your Community Service Credits”).

In Short

However a student chooses to spend their February break, there’s no right or wrong answer for the entire teen population. Students are encouraged to look at their past and future commitments, their current level of stress, and what they need to get done before June in order to make appropriate decisions.

Enjoy your break!

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