The AP Exam season has finally come to an end. You’ve just gotten back to class from your last AP test, hoping to finally get a break, but on your desk is a packet. Another packet! This time, it’s a project. You groan, wondering why teachers are putting you through this right after your exam. But there is another side to the story. While I do agree that these post-AP projects may be cumbersome, let me tell you exactly why the teachers throw these at you.
First and foremost, these projects are there to help you. For many AP students, classes are a mad rush to learn an immense amount of complex information in a short amount of time. What results from this scramble is a huge decline in grades. Once you’re behind on the class, you’re pretty much lagging behind for the rest of the year. And as a result, your grades often suffer. That’s exactly why these projects are there: to give you a little grade boost before the school year ends. These projects often serve to save you from barely missing out on that A- or B- in the class. Even if you’re a graduating senior, these projects give you a cushion in case you decided to slack off earlier in the semester. Think about it this way: you’ve worked so hard for the past eight months, why not just spend another three weeks working? Additionally, the grading on these projects really isn’t terribly harsh, so just do what you need to do and take the free points without complaining.
Second, your attendance brings in the money the school needs to operate. The school gets money based off of student attendance in class. These projects are there in order to ensure that you don’t stop showing up to class because you feel that the class doesn’t matter anymore. Yeah, I admit this isn’t something that we as students want to do, but we owe it to the school. For a school that’s literally been pouring money into your education for years, being in class is the least we can do to appreciate it. By giving these post-AP assignments, teachers can keep you busy so you don’t get bored and at the same time, make sure you show up to class because the alternative would be a significant impact on your grade.
Finally, these post-AP assignments often give us a way to apply what we’ve learned in the AP class to the real world. Throughout the whole year you’ve been almost mindlessly learning the information just so you can regurgitate it back when the AP exam comes around, but these projects help give a chance to actually demonstrate what you have learned. The end of the year projects serve as an effective assessment to actually prove that you’ve mastered the material. It’s also a lot better than the alternative, which would be writing long research papers to demonstrate your understanding of the material. By showing the application of what you’ve learned to the real world, these projects have the potential to increase your understanding of and interest in the subject.
In the end of the day, while these projects and assignments may seem like a huge pain, there is some merit in them. I agree that they seem overwhelming at first, but if you break them down and organize yourself properly, they really aren’t that hard to complete. So stop complaining, appreciate the last couple of weeks you have in the class and with the teacher, and power through.