Due to the covid-19 pandemic, many students are learning entirely or partly from home through online services such as Zoom. Here are a few tips to help students make the most of their online learning experience.
- Create a dedicated study space.
Set aside an area where you can focus on your work with no other distractions. If you have your own desk, clean it regularly and keep it free of debris. Take a few minutes to clear off snack dishes, extra water glasses, and put away phones, tablets, and game consoles. Close tabs you know will be tempting. That includes videos!
If you have to share a desk or other space, such as the kitchen table or a spot in the living room, create a movable system. You’ll need your notebooks, textbooks, and a case with your pens and pencils. Keep those in tidy piles or in a bag that you can take with you wherever you need to go. Avoid loose items such as sheets of paper, pencils, erasers, or calculators. An organized system will help you focus on the task at hand. As much as possible, create a study space that allows you to sit upright!
2. Engage with the lesson.
Now that going to class often involves simply logging into an online classroom, students are finding it easier to watch and not engage with the instructor. Students who actively participate in the class are more likely to retain the information they learned.
Make a point of engaging with the lesson at least once per class. Ask questions and volunteer to answer sample problems. This will encourage you to participate and you will learn more effectively.
3. Schedule your study time.
Create a weekly study and class schedule that works for you. This might take experimentation, but it is absolutely worth it!
Start with your class schedule, then add in other regularly scheduled items such as extra-curriculars or tutoring times. Once you have your fixed schedule, pick out times for homework, study, exercise, breaks, and practice for your extra-curriculars.
Set a timer to help you keep to this schedule every day. Put a checkmark beside each item you complete and track things you consistently don’t complete. If, for example, you tend to burn out every day during your study time right before dinner, maybe that’s a good place to have a break before you refuel with dinner. With this process you can create a schedule that works for you.
4. Take a break.
When most people make their first study schedule, they forget to build in breaks. Everyone needs to rest and recharge! Smart students know that properly scheduled breaks allow you to do your best work during study time and on tests. Just like athletes need to rest their bodies to achieve peak performance, students need to rest their minds.
5. Hold yourself accountable.
Sticking to goals is something most people struggle with, but it’s not impossible! Start by setting reasonable goals. It may seem obvious, but many people stumble on that first step because they choose goals that are too ambitious, which only sets them up to fail.
Next, create a plan to achieve those goals with all the steps in between. For example, if your goal is to improve your grade in a class, take a look at your class syllabus (ask your teacher if you don’t have one) and map out all the upcoming tests, quizzes, and graded assignments. Then, work backward, giving each assignment a reasonable amount of time to complete and making a study plan for each test and quiz. That way you’ll never be surprised that a test is coming up and you’ll always have enough time to properly complete your assignments.
Finally, share your goals with friends and family. They will offer support when you’re not feeling motivated and give you a sense of accountability to them and yourself.
If you have any questions about test prep, admissions, or building good study habits, reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org to book a free initial consultation with one of our education consultants!