Balancing Work and Rest

Author: Mr Tyson Kenny - Deputy Principal

This week’s bible passage is an important reminder for us all, and perhaps particularly timely for students currently in the throes of completing end of term assessment.

My roots will reach to the water, and the dew will lie all night on my branches.

Job 29:19

Earlier this term I reflected upon and shared the importance of students working hard to ‘get the little things right’.  My focus was largely directed at students developing certain study habits and ensuring they complete school work not only in class, but most importantly, between classes through effective homework and study practices. This week’s bible verse also reminds us that between lessons, and perhaps towards the end of a busy term, students who have worked hard need to ensure they are also well rested.  I realise this is easier said than done, especially in the busyness of the assessment period many students are currently facing.   

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If you are currently a student working hard to achieve your best in your assessments, I remind you to plan for sufficient rest during this time.  Yes, I’m sure there may be a late night or two, studying hard to ensure that you are well prepared to complete an exam the next day; however, it’s important that the mind is also well rested, perhaps with a good night’s sleep and through healthy eating and hydration.

Just like an athlete preparing for a race or an upcoming competition, the most successful athletes, and I believe students, realise how important it is to get the balance right between working hard and rest.  Obviously, too much of one can throw this balance out of whack – with too much rest not sufficiently equipping the athlete or student to achieve their best, and too much training or study without enough rest causing one to under perform.  God encourages all of us to seek and enjoy rest.  Those that also find rest in Him are particularly blessed to experience His love, both in times of stress (i.e. late night’s studying hard) and in rest.

For families currently trying to support their student with achieving this balance, I encourage you to engage your student through regular conversation.  If they are struggling to achieve a sufficient study load outside of school, try and support them with developing certain routines that allow them enough time and opportunity to complete this work.  I know many parents engage with the Study Skills Handbook website, which the College subscribes to and communicates logon details through the Enews regularly.  Many parents/carers have commented how useful this website has been for supporting their student with developing important study habits at home.

For families of students who are currently struggling to achieve sufficient rest, make sure you speak with them about this.  In these discussions, try and determine what are the things that are stopping them from properly resting, and if it’s to do with a particular subject that’s proving challenging, encourage them to contact their teacher for support, rather than stressing at home and becoming too worked up about it.  I realise that there can be many other reasons students can struggle to achieve sufficient rest, such as having too many technology distractions, but I believe the key to finding the best balance for each student concerning their work habits and achieving sufficient rest, starts with dialogue between parents/carers and their student.

I wish every student success during this assessment period.  I also pray that you each experience much rest over the upcoming holidays, which allows you to be renewed and re-energised for the new school term and the many important learning opportunities it will bring.