Plan For College

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

7 Ways to Keep Your Brain from Turning to Mush This Summer

Let's face it. School has been out for over a month and it's easy to let your brain get out of shape when you don't have routine assignments, homework, and class during the day. Especially for high school seniors, the transition into a college course load can be a rude awakening after months of hiatus from mental study. Even if you're working full time doing physical labor this summer.....
.....make sure that you at least make a little bit of time to keep your brain in shape.

1. Read. This is obvious, but go to a local library and pick up some books for free. You don't have to read War and Peace or the autobiography of the person you aspire to be most. Pick up something you're interested in and see where it takes you. Write down any words you don't know and look them up later to improve your vocabulary. (Your reading doesn't have to be books. Magazines and blogs are other viable options.)

2. Start a blog. It's also easy to do and free through Wordpress or Blogger. You will be required to write extensively throughout your collegiate career so it's good to get/stay in the habit of writing regularly. Starting a blog can also be a good thing to keep while you're in college too.

3. Take a summer class. Check with the college you'll be attending in the fall to see what their policy is for accepting credits. Often times they will accept credits from other accredited institutions and sometimes from online institutions as well. This can be a great way to knock out some credits and keep your brain sharp.

4. Track Something. How many calories did you eat this summer? How much gas did your family consume driving? How much money did you spend? Set up an excel spreadsheet for anything that you're interested in learning about your behavior. Many of you will find jobs after college where you will be required to track or analyze trends of behavior or performance. Your tracking doesn't have to be perfect. Just give it a shot and see see how you do. It may give you new insight into how you can improve an aspect of your life.

5. Take Lessons. These can be digital, instrumental, linguistic, or athletic. It's a great time to start learning computer coding to make a website or how to play the piano or how to speak another language. Keep a journal of what you learn from those lessons and reflect upon where you started and where you finished.

6. Raise Money For Charity or Start a Business. You can put together a garage sale, yard sale, or even put together an event to raise money. Have a kickball game that raises money for cancer awareness. Write letters to local businesses and ask friends family and neighbors for small donations. Also promote these events through social media. This can be a great entrepreneurial experience for a great cause.

7. Make a Smart Phone App. Think of an application that could help you in your daily life or with your studies. Talk to friends and family about the app and see if they would use it. Would they download it if it was free? Would they pay for it? How much? See if they know any developers that can help you or research online to see if you can find one yourself.

These are just some ideas to get you started. You can also ask your high school or college guidance counselor, peers, or family for other things you can do as well.


  1. I always like to suggest ideas for my students to pursue during the summer months. These are great suggestions and they will help with college admissions, as well as keeping the teenager brain engaged.