Issue: 2016-08-18, PHOTO: by Sophie Pearl Photography
Looking out on a Yukon summer evening
A question that pops up every now and again is, Would students be better off without a summer vacation? This stance claims that the luxurious two-and-a-half month summer break should be replaced with shorter and more frequent breaks throughout the year, since the summer break’s original purpose – of collecting the harvest – is no longer being served.
As much as I hate to admit it, this argument does present some valid points. One argument used to promote this change is that a student’s intellectual growth deteriorates over the course of a summer.
Additionally, the idea that students would be better able to retain information if they’re kept in an academic setting more continuously throughout the year is a logical concept.
But most of us are horrified at the notion of doing away with summer vacation.
Every adult has some fond memories of cherished summers. We kids are still in the excitement of creating those memories.
While our theoretically optimal GPA average may suffer, every other aspect of our wellbeing is nurtured in the summer vacation environment.
Summer gives students one of life’s greatest luxuries: time. Some teens spend this time going to summer camps. These camps range from the traditional canoeing and campfire experience to specialized camps specifically designed to enhance growth in a passion, such as sports or music. In turn, others become camp counsellors themselves or get other summer jobs to start learning the ways of the working world.
Others spend summer time visiting family across Canada, across the world, or take adventurous trips out into the wilderness to reconnect with their family right at home.
Some travel to get a taste of different cultures, and others make a trip down south to revamp their closet and quench their big city thirst.
Yet, no matter where our summer plans take us, everyone’s summer has the same interwoven elements of rest and relaxation. From movie marathons, to sleeping in till noon, to lying in the grass on a lazy day, we’ll always find the time to recharge. Despite what the adult universe may think, the teenage world isn’t a carefree paradise. There’s stress and responsibilities that any human needs a break from. And summer provides that break in the form of cool breezes and refreshing lakes.
In all, I along with many others (I hope), strongly feel that summer is a gift of good weather. This blessing should not be wasted in the daily grind, that is working life, but should be experienced to the fullest potential through the simple joys in life, like rocking hammocks, long bike rides, picnic lunches, barbeque dinners and roasting marshmallows.