Originally published August 13, 2020
Migrated August 30, 2020
As the start of school is fast approaching, many students are getting ready to attend online school. This new method of learning is new to us all and can seem a little daunting. To help, here are a few tips to get ready and thrive in online school.
Organize Your Workspace
Without classrooms with the specific purpose of providing a place for students to learn, we advise creating a similar space reserved for school. Whether that be at home or in outside quarantined spaces, try to reserve a spot where you can attend classes without too many distractions. For example, using a desk in a room or the kitchen table would be an ideal setting for learning. Choose a space that’s big enough to fit a computer, supplies (like books or pencils), and additional working space. Gather all the materials you need where you can easily access them.
Maintain a Healthy Work Schedule
Most teachers require students to check in for class at a certain time. In this case, it would be helpful to start developing a healthy schedule to follow during the week. Going to sleep at a reasonable time is important to both your mental health and work ethic. Make sure to wake up early as well, since tardies or absences will affect your student attendance record. Once school hours are over, find some extra time for homework or studying, especially if you are in middle or high school. Just by spending 15 minutes a day on each of your subjects, you can retain important information for the long run.
Your schedule should also have space for breaks and meals. Taking a few breathers can help to relax you in the middle of a busy day and re-charging with a healthy meal during lunch or having a few snacks throughout the day is equally as important.
Continue to Get Involved in Extracurriculars
Just because you’re at home doesn’t mean you can’t get involved in extracurriculars. Many schools are offering options where students can enjoy music or athletic activities with little contact but you can also get pursue interests outside of ones that schools offer. National organizations, competitions, and student clubs will still continue throughout the school year. You can also take this time to learn a new instrument or sport. Extracurriculars are very important and to learn more, please visit our article on “The Importance and Utility of Extracurriculars“.
All of online school will be held on websites or apps. Sites like Classroom, Google Meet, Zoom, and other educational devices will be crucial in students’ learning experiences. Because of this, all schools will be handing out technological devices (mostly Chromebooks) to students who need them. Make sure to always keep track of your computer and to take care of it so that you can use it all year. Become familiar with how classroom tools work, it will maximize your efficiency when working. Whenever you have difficulties, have the contact information of your teachers on hand so that you have someone who can help you. It’s also important to keep track of school and district-wide news. Make sure your parents know where to access details about certain events or announcements.
While isolation or spatial distancing is vital for our safety during the pandemic, maintaining communication with others is important as well. It is scientifically proven that humans need social interaction to be healthy, but that doesn’t necessarily mean it has to be in-person. The aforementioned technology that will be provided by schools can also be used for personal socializing. Many students have already come to realize how important it is to stay in touch with family and friends, and there is plenty of websites or apps that can aid you in staying connected. School can oftentimes become stressful and put a strain on your mental health, so it’s always important to have someone, whether that be family, friends, or teachers to lessen the pressure.
Finally, the most important thing is to just relax! Set aside some time to take it all in and get in the right state of mind. Take some breathing exercises or get some last-minute quality time by yourself or with others. Remember, there are many people who will be around to help whenever you need it. This school year will be different and maybe even difficult, but it will be full of learning and new experiences.
Thanks for reading!
This article was written and later migrated to the current website by Kate Kim, a head writer at Robin’s Nest.