By Samantha Gershuny
There are seven days in a week. Five days of school, where students have an interminable amount of work, and two short days meant for relaxation with family and friends. The question: “Why do I have a test on Monday?” is one that many high school students wonder about. The last thing a student wants to do is take time out of their weekend to prepare for yet another Monday test.
According to Aliza Hammond, a freshman at Byram Hills High School, “tests on Mondays are unfair to students, and take away from their weekends.” She adds that Monday tests give us no break to our never-ending cycle of stress and studying. “Saturdays and Sundays are our days to relax,” Aliza says, and “take a step back and enjoy life, but with the thought of an upcoming test, anxiety builds up.” Throughout a student’s weekend, an upcoming test is a constant worry in the back of their minds. When Monday tests are given, the material is easily forgotten, and students’ stress levels increase greatly. Going to see a teacher Monday morning is not always a possibility, meaning that their long list of questions may never be answered. Students panic, and instead of continuing to study, they forget the material they do know. As these stress levels rise, a student will be more prone to worse performance on their exam.
A freshman from Byram Hills High School, Ella Javorsky, has a different notion about tests given on Mondays. She comments that “tests on Mondays allow for reassurance because you have the whole day to study. There is plenty of time, therefore preventing stress from accumulating. However, you shouldn’t spend the whole day studying, but just study until you know the concepts so you still have plenty of time to relax!” When given a whole day to study the day before, students may feel more reassured and confident going into their exams.
In many cases, students do not have all of the weekend to truly prepare, due to possible commitments. With the upcoming test they need to study for, de-stress time with friends, and family obligations sadly often become students’ last priorities. “Sunday nights should be a time for families to spend together, because many have parents who work on the weekends,” mentions Hallie Gordon, a sophomore at Byram Hills High School. Frequently, on Sunday afternoon when studying takes over, homework for other academics becomes a student’s last priority, and is therefore not dedicating as much time to their other classes. On top of a student’s heavy workload, beginning to study late on a Sunday night leads to sleep deprivation and exhaustion so students are less focused while taking the exam.
It is clear that family obligations, relaxation and de-stress time, and a good night’s sleep is limited on the weekends when you have a Monday test, because Sunday becomes another “school day.” By teachers postponing an exam until later in the week, students will have a greater opportunity for preparation, and a feeling of reassurance while taking their test.