What are your plans for winter break? Do you spend time with family, friends, or do you prefer to be alone? Write one paragraph in your opinion?

Expert Answers

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I've given assignments much like this one, and sometimes students struggle to find excitement worth sharing in a typical break when resting is the prime goal on the upcoming calendar.

The goal here is to write a personal narrative. You'll therefore want to use the I perspective and focus on really describing some of the traditions that you enjoy over winter break.

Some breaks are more exciting than others, right? Don't worry about that. Here are some questions that might help you brainstorm:

  • Do you share a certain meal with family and/or friends every break? If so, what dishes do you most look forward to? Is there an embarrassing uncle or a hilarious cousin who livens up the gathering? What do you do besides eat? I know families who use this time for everything from clay target shooting to games of Pictionary to a girls-only shopping trip after the meal. You might want to really focus on this one gathering and describe the smells, sounds, and sights of that typical experience.
  • New Year's Eve is also during this break. Do you enjoy large gatherings with strangers, an intimate gathering of friends, or going to bed before midnight? Why?
  • Do you use your break to have more fun or to rest from school? Which of these two goals dominates most of your break time?

The other goal of this assignment is to explain whom you prefer to spend time with over break. Do you spend most of your time with family? This could be the case if you travel out of town to visit them during the holidays or if family comes to stay with you during this time. Do you prefer to see more of friends whom you don't have enough time to hang out with when you're so busy with school (and maybe sports and/or a job)? Or do you crave peace and solitude during the break because normal routines are so overwhelming that the break is your recharge time? People enjoy doing different types of things when they have a little extra unstructured time. So, whatever your needs or routine may be, just explain why that feels like the best use of your break.

It might also be fun to work a quote into your introduction and/or conclusion that relates to your main ideas. You could look to holiday songs ("Silent night, holy night, all is calm, all is bright") to holiday movies ("I guess I could use a little social interaction" — The Grinch) to religious texts. This could provide additional interest, humor, or reflection on your chosen angle.

I hope that helps you in your planning. Good luck!

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