By: Lauren Capps
We all have in some way, shape, or form had to do a book report during the summer. I know, I know. Why do teachers give homework over the summer, anyway? I know how you feel. Let me help you make it easier.
In the summer, most kids just want to do their own thing. As enticing as it is to go hang out with your friends or play video games all day, the report will only loom over your head and become a bigger problem the more you procrastinate. Here are some tips to help you get started and finish early so you can get back to the summer fun!
1. Choose a Book You are Interested In
The biggest challenge you might face is choosing what book to write on for your report. If your teacher doesn’t assign any particular book, then feel free to pick a book based on what you enjoy reading about. Think of your hobbies and interests, then search for books that follow that theme.
2. Set a Schedule for Yourself
One of the best ways to get started is to set a schedule that you can quickly adapt to. For example, waking up and having a good breakfast is a good start. Then, sit down and set an amount of pages you want to read in a few hours. Stick to that amount and take a break when you’re done. Continue doing that every day until you finish the book.
3. Take Notes as You Read
As you read, take note of interesting points that you can use for your report. Think of arguments or things you can contrast the points with, and always make sure you figure out what the climax is (the main idea or breaking point). Remember to write down the page numbers that you found your information on so you can get back to it quickly when you start writing your report. If possible, it can also be really helpful to keep notes in the margins of your book.
4. Take a Break
If the reading is weighing you down, go outside and enjoy the weather to clear your mind. Exercise can help, too. Whenever I take a break and come back refreshed, my mind is better capable of reading through slow parts of the book. Even if it takes you longer to get to your set page goal, you will feel relieved when you finally hit that page limit.
5. Cure Your Writer’s Block
Writer’s block can be a hassle — check out this article for some quick and easy ways to get past it. Just like getting started with the reading, set a number of words you want to write each day. For example, the leadership pastor and author, John C. Maxwell, sets a minimum 1,000 word limit each day. That’s for writing his novels, so you don’t have to do anything that drastic.
For a book report that ranges between 500-1500 words, choose a limit of 200-300 words per day. If you get stuck, take breaks. If that doesn’t work, think of your assignment as a way to describe something you love, not something you despise.
If you go into it with a better mindset and write about something you enjoy, it will become easier to get past your writer’s block.
Writing a book report shouldn’t be a chore. If you take small steps to work on it every day, then the quicker you can get it done, which means you will be back to relaxing and having fun in no time!