Making the Most of the Summer Break

The break between finishing your GCSEs and starting College is usually the longest time you’ve spent out of education. While there’s plenty of time to relax and recover after a challenging academic year, you should also spend some time preparing for the next stage in your life.

1. Summer Homework

If you attended New Students’ Day in July, your new teachers may have given you some tasks to complete before term starts in September. This is usually basic research around the first topics you’ll be studying in class and the opportunity to familiarise yourself with the subject – especially if it’s something you haven’t studied before. Some subjects will have given you reading lists so it’s useful to get ahead with key texts while you have a lot of free time.

2. Work Experience

This long break is a great time to gain some work experience by getting your first job. Not only will you gain valuable experience to begin your CV, you’ll learn to budget and manage an income. The extra cash will be useful when it comes to buying your College bus pass, new stationery or treating yourself. Ask family or friends if there are any temporary positions at their workplace or search for vacancies online – retail and hospitality are great starting points.

3. Volunteer

This summer you’ll probably have more free time and less commitments than at any other point in your life. Why not volunteer your time at a local charity shop, food bank or summer scheme? Charity work is hugely rewarding and it’ll look impressive on your CV while helping you meet new people.

4. Try New Hobbies

Instead of sitting around at home all summer, try and find a new hobby. It’ll keep you entertained but could also lead to a future career or passion. You could join a local sports team, go swimming, learn to cook, join a dance class, ride a bike, explore the city, tick off books and films from your bucket list, join a circus class, start a blog or teach yourself HTML. You never know where it might lead!

5. Make a CV

Most future jobs will require a CV. This is a record of your previous jobs, qualifications, skills and personal qualities. Start building yours now; include your GCSE results, school work experience, hobbies and anything you’ve taken part in such as school council, National Citizen Service (NCS) or the Duke of Edinburgh (DofE) award. Look at examples online to learn how to structure it.

6. Relax and Enjoy

Most importantly, take time for yourself. See your friends, go outside and give yourself a break from working so hard. Make sure you’re feeling refreshed and energised ready for next term!