As a student attending Honolulu Community College on the Island of Oahu, COVID-19 really changed things. With such drastic changes to schooling, some people might find it easier to learn from home, while others are struggling to make it through. I find online classes a lot harder compared to in-person classes, so I wanna share somethings I do to help me make it through the semester.
1. Wake up at a normal time
This might sound ridiculous, especially if you are attending asynchronous classes, but it will help in the long run. Waking up like you normally would for school can help you keep a set schedule. For me, I would usually wake up at 5:30 am get ready and leave the house by 6:00 am. Why did I leave so early? I had to catch the morning traffic and make it to my 8:30 am class. Now that I am attending asynchronous classes I still wake up at 5:30 am to get prepared for school, I eat my breakfast at 6:30 and start class by 8:00 am. This helps me keep track of how much time I need to be spending on one class and what time my breaks are.
2. Take a break
Take a break and stretch your legs! When you are in regular school there are breaks in between classes, take the same breaks while you're at home. By taking these breaks you can give your brain time to process and relax. I do this daily, I take this time to eat a snack, take a short walk somewhere, or even just lay on the floor and do some stretches. Some other things you can do during this break work out, talk to some friends or even catch a few Zs. It all depends on the break time you would normally have in the school day.
3. End at the same time
Put that classwork AWAY! Your day is done. Take a few hours of freedom as you normally would, regardless if it's to go to work, back to sleep, or just out with some friends. By ending the day at the time you normally would you set a boundary of when it's time to work and when it's time for you to live your life. I'm not saying put off your work, just take that time to do what you want to. Plus it gives your hard-working brain the relaxation it needs. For me, I would usually end at 12:45, so now I shut down my computer and put my books and notes away and go about my day. This makes me feel like I run the show and it's true I have that power! Trust me it feels great to have the power to work at your own pace
4. Try not to fall asleep
But it's so boring! I know I've been there, but once you fall asleep and take that 5-hour nap it's going to be hard to be motivated to continue. I know in tip number 2 I said catch some Zs, but that's during your break period. Falling asleep during the time you should be in class will make you unmotivated and that'll lead to PROCRASTINATION..... a student's worst enemy. Procrastination during asynchronous learning is eviler than it's presence during a regular semester. One time I fell asleep during the time I set aside specifically for the class, and when I got up 3 hours later I didn't want to touch anything related to the class. I almost forgot that I had 4 quizzes due the next day, which I didn't study for. In the end, try your best to stay awake
5. Set reminders
Setting reminders for quizzes, exams and assignments can really help. The reminders don't only help me remember what assignments I need to work on or what classes I need to study for, but it also helps me look at what day it is (we all know the days start to blend), and that I shouldn't be on my phone at the moment. Sometimes I'll find myself scrolling through Instagram, laughing at funny videos or memes, but when the reminders pop-up it reminds me that I got things to do! Set reminders to go off throughout your school day. It really helps to keep you on track. Think of it as a teacher scolding you for not paying attention.
Many teachers who are usually in-person instructors are doing their best to have ways to contact them. USE IT! Your teacher offering zoom meetings? Attend it if you need to! Does your professor converse through email? EMAIL THEM! Take advantage of every option of communication. Not only is it beneficial for you to be asking questions or reaching out about any concerns, but it also helps them improve their layout of the class. We all know our classmates have the same question, but no one wants to ask. By taking advantage of those options they are giving you it gives you a better chance of understanding and improving your work as well. Plus some teachers might just miss the conversations they have with students so make their day and reach out.
Don't worry you'll survive! Just take these tips into consideration. Everyone is different and some might work for you some might not and that's ok. Find things that work for you. I wanna wish all the stressed-out students good luck with class. You're smart and if you put your mind to it you can crush this semester!
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