How warm weather can affect student performance

As winter comes to a close, we begin to put the dark and dismal days behind us. Slowly, it begins to warm up and the days get longer and brighter. These beautiful days can evoke enthusiasm and ambitiousness which makes it hard not to feel excited about this spring and upcoming summer. As spring semester started this year, I began to wonder how the weather has an effect on students during the school year. Does it make us more willing to study, do our homework, and more amped to excel in classes? Or does it have the opposite effect; the warm weather making us want to be outside and free from responsibility?

The weather can affect us whether it be excitement from a sunny day or gloominess from a bleak and cold one. Sometimes during the winter months, people can come down with Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) which can affect their mood and their school or work performance. According to Patient Info, a site which answers any and all health related questions, “SAD is a type of depression which occurs when you develop symptoms of depression during the darker winter months each year.” This is one extreme way in which the cold and dark winter months could have affected some students last semester or over J-term.

As we begin our new semester, I decided to see what some of our fellow classmates thought about how the weather affected their performance academically. My questions were, “What is your outlook on this semester?” and “Do you think the longer and warmer days have any effect on how well you do in school?” I tried to keep this as informal as possible in order to get the most honest answers. I asked a total of 8 students from different classes that I have at St. Kate’s as well as one student from St. Thomas these two questions.

Students starting spring semester off right by studying hard at the library.

The answers that I got back were a little mixed. When asked about their outlook on this semester most students had a very positive answer. They seemed excited and enthusiastic. However, one student responded more negatively saying, “Not the best.” When I got to the second question, lots of people had different answers. Five out of eight responded yes that the weather did affect their school work, but when asked if it was in a positive or negative way it was all over the board. The three students who said weather did not affect their school work, all responded by saying they never felt productive regardless of the weather.

In my opinion, I believe that the weather affects us all in varying ways. Some people can be very influenced by how the weather is outside and others not so much. Those of us who are influenced by the weather can be helped and hindered by it. I think it just depends on how influential your environment is on you.

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