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The upside of having finals before winter break

Tiffany Steigerwald, Reporter

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No one should spend their winter break studying for finals.

Winter break is the time to make new memories with friends and family. When finals are taken before break, students will be stress free during the holidays.

Having exams after break causes students to constantly worry about withholding a semester of material in their brains for another two weeks before testing begins.

Seniors at Palatine High School have been able to experience taking final exams both before and after break, and they stand behind having them prior to break.

When senior Katie Lindert had multiple finals to take after break during her freshman and sophomore year, she felt like she missed out on spending time with her family because she was too busy studying.

Anja Smith, who is also a senior at PHS, prefers having finals before break, because she enjoys spending the holidays with her family instead of studying for her classes.

Final exams are stressful regardless of when they’re taken. Having them after break would weigh down students during a time where they’re supposed to be taking a break from schoolwork and classes.

“Finals will always make me feel stressed, but I feel that it is a much better alternative compared to spending my whole break consumed with my work,” Smith said.

“Having finals at any time makes me feel overwhelmed,” senior Meghan Fortunato said. “I think it’s better to feel relaxed over break. I like to go into the new year with a new attitude.”

With limited time, finals can be very overwhelming before break.

Lindert feels that “the break after feels genuine and makes all the stress worth it,” so why not push to do your best before the semester ends?

Final exams before winter break is the way to go.”

Studying a semester’s work before finals definitely isn’t a light task.

When finals are before break, students have the material fresher in their minds though, which helps drastically.

Lindert has a lot more time these days due to learning to manage her time, and feels that she will have better studying strategies for finals this semester.

However, Yogi Patel from Maine East High School, argues that using winter break to study is more beneficial.

“You’ll also know exactly what you are struggling with, leaving nothing to stress over during the actual week of finals,” Patel said.

Unlike Smith who has 5 finals, which would make her winter break very stressful if she had to spend it studying for all of those.

“While students are on break, they often don’t have the option of working face-to-face with a teacher and getting guidance from them. Students often have to suffer through their studying alone, hoping that they can figure everything out by themselves,”  Joliet West High School student Connor Relyea said.

Students like Smith and Relyea take advantage of the resources they have at school that aren’t available to them during break, like: meeting with teachers to ask questions about material they aren’t confident about, along with coming in for help before or after school.

Some teachers hold study sessions throughout the weeks of finals preparations, and that’s not something students can do with other classmates while on break when they’re all wrapped up in the fun of being on break.

Final exams before winter break is the way to go.

Testing right after break is setting students up to fail. It’s very difficult to study while on break, and retaining all of that information for another two weeks without classes is not always attainable by everyone.

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The upside of having finals before winter break