Love it or hate it, AP Summer work is crucial to students

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I know a few individuals who have dropped out of particular AP classes because of the summer work that has to be completed.  While the vast amount of due dates and massive amount of material can seem daunting, fact is, summer work is great for preparing students for the college-level challenges that come with AP classes.

I don’t mind having a work load on my shoulders, especially if it’s going to help my earn college credit.  What else does a high school student do during the summer besides the occasional part-time job?

Some classes like AP French don’t require summer work, while AP Government involved three hours of participation in a political event, and the window of time to finish said project expanded into the actual school year.

The summer work doesn’t come in a specific format for every class, and it can vary greatly depending on course requirements.  When I was in AP World History, for example, I remember having to reading two novels and taking notes on each and every chapter of the book, in addition to drawing a cartoon for each one.  After that, the first one or two chapters’ worth of note cards had to be completed from the textbook.  As a sophomore taking their first AP class, I felt like the assignments were completely unnecessary.  It wasn’t until much later that I actually realized how the summer work had prepared me for class itself by teaching me the proper discipline and time-management skills I would need, not just for AP World, but for all my future AP classes.  I have no doubt in my mind that if I’d gone into AP World without accomplishing the summer work, I would have done significantly worse and probably failed the actual AP exam instead of passing.

There are AP classes that have more summer work than others, but if a class does have summer projects, it’s in a student’s best interest to do the work and get it over with.  It’s not fun, but it will be significantly less painful come the first day of class.

Even as a junior, I know people who didn’t finish the assignments for certain classes, and had to drop.   Even for a class like AP Biology where the work itself isn’t for an actual grade, the amount of effort put into a class’s content over the summer can dictate your future in a subject.  In a way, being able to complete the summer work is as crucial as having the class perquisites, in my opinion.

There were various students in AP Chemistry that told me every day that studying the content for a class over the summer is just as important as doing assigned projects.  This just proves that what teachers assign for summer assignments isn’t just busy work.  The content has a purpose; to prepare students for the class.

All in all, Advanced Placement classes are called said name for reasons.  Students prove themselves worthy of the course by working and studying for a class during a time for vacation and relaxation.  There are people that love the summer work, including myself, but there are plenty of confused or even overwhelmed students going into college-level courses not knowing what to expect.  This is where the summer work comes in.

The only downside to the summer assignments might be that they might be tedious to some.  However, advantages include a jump-start on a good grade, practice using the material in a specific format and even learning how to manage your time around upcoming homework.

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