With schools across the country shifting to online classes, continuing to learn from home may feel overwhelming. With these tips, we hope to help ease the transition from in-class learning to online classes. And who knows! You may find that taking online classes will provide you with convenience and flexibility you didn’t have before.
Treat it like any other class
Focusing at home may feel strange at first. You may miss being surrounded by your peers or simply raising your hand to ask a question. However, you can be equally successful online. When you log into Zoom or Course Capture, ready your pencil and take notes. Pay attention in the same way you would if you were attending the class in-person.
At home, it’s easy to zone out during lectures. Challenge yourself to remain immersed during each class. Ask questions, take advantage of discussion boards, or even change your Zoom background to something more fun! Keep things interesting in a way that works for you. You can also ask your teachers about one-on-one conference calls if you need extra support. By participating and engaging with the material you’re learning, there’s nothing stopping you from succeeding in online classes!
Lead your own discussions
Share your thoughts about each lesson with a friend or classmate, and compare your notes, outlines, and study guides. One of the best ways to retain information is to teach someone else, so feel free to include your family members or roommates in your discussion. By talking through your own interpretations of the material, you will be prepared to share during your class!
When you attended school in-person each day, you had breaks that came naturally with your routine. There’s a break between periods walking from one class to another. You had your lunch break when you would goof off with your friends. Even during your classes, your teachers may have given you a break while they connected their computer to the projector screen. When you’re learning in online classes, it’s easy to stay seated for hours at a time. Schedule those breaks that you would normally have, and stick to them!
Prepare in advance
Complete all your readings and assignments before class! Many students wait to finish their homework until after the lesson. By doing your work in advance, you will be more equipped to participate in class discussions, ask clarifying questions, and drive home important concepts.
Create a study space
Set up your materials in an environment that’s inviting! Maybe you want to sit near a window to soak in the rays of sunshine, or maybe you want to keep your area extra clean and organized. Everyone is different, so make a list of all the little things that bring you joy, and let that inspire your surroundings. For more ideas about creating a productive study space, check out this article!
Focus on time management
No matter if you’re preparing for college or you’re already enrolled, you can use this time to practice time management. You can start with small habits! Try focusing on one task at a time, rather than stressing about the totality of your to-do list. You can also experiment with studying at different times to discover which part of the day feels more naturally energizing. Read on for more tips for time management!
Take it one day at a time
It’s okay if this transition is harder than you thought it would be. You are not merely learning from home. You are at home during a crisis, and trying to learn at the same time. That’s not an easy thing to do, so lean on your support system when the days feel more challenging. Don’t beat yourself up if you feel unmotivated or tired all the time; it’s completely normal and understandable. All that matters is that you are doing the best you can.
We hope these tips make you feel more comfortable learning in your classes at home. It’s not an easy time to be studying, so give yourself a pat on the back for all the little victories. Every time you complete an assignment or pay attention in class, celebrate that. You didn’t ask for this huge change, but here you are, handling it in the best way you can. And that deserves all the recognition.