Schools are becoming increasingly flexible and innovative in their teaching and learning methods. Thanks to today’s technology, online learning is a popular – and sometimes necessary – option.
But what is it like to follow lessons from home and study online? For starters, it means changing up your school routine and getting used to learning without your classmates around you and your teachers in front of you. It can take some getting used to, but online learning is an effective alternative to learning in a classroom.
Adjusting quickly to this new learning environment is key to ensuring you keep up with your schoolwork and grades. Here are our four tips for making that transition as smooth as possible and achieving online learning success!
1. The early bird catches the worm – or a delicious smoothie
Not having an official start to your school day can make it very tempting to stay in your warm bed until the last possible second. However, sticking to a morning routine is essential. According to Navy Seal Admiral McRaven, a regular morning routine that begins with a made-up bed will result in a more productive day overall. So rise and shine, make your bed and take the time to prepare yourself a nutritious, delicious breakfast. Whether it’s a smoothie bowl or scrambled eggs, eat something with enough energy to kickstart your day. Having the same breakfast every day doesn’t have to be part of your routine. Why not add some variety to your morning and try that avocado smoothie you saw on social media?
2. Create an agenda – and stick to it
Before diving head first into your pool of tasks, take a few minutes to structure your day. What needs to get done first? Create an agenda or to-do list and write down your tasks in order of highest to lowest priority. Writing tasks down not only gives you a good overview at the start of your day, but seeing how many items you cross off by the end of the day will leave you feeling satisfied with the work you’ve done. If you want to take your ‘Agenda Game’ to the next level, you can also divide your tasks into time slots and/or color code different groups of tasks. Either way, knowing what’s coming and preparing yourself accordingly is the key to a productive day.
3. Move it, move it
Take it from King Julien and move it! It doesn’t have to be a full dance choreography in the jungle. You can use your lunch break to take a short walk in your neighbourhood or do a home workout in your living room. This will get more blood flowing through your brain and burn some calories while you’re at it. If you’re pressed for time, no one will notice if you do 20 jumping jacks between classes. Or, even better, get your classmates to join you for a Skype workout. This increases motivation and is another way for you to spend time together.
4. Respect your school-life balance
When you can’t create physical space between where you study and where you rest, it’s important to create mental space. Taking time to disconnect at the end of the day is important to ensure the next day is as productive as the day before.
If you can, set up a permanent workplace – like a desk in your room or in your parents’ office. Avoid lying in bed or on the couch so you can keep these spaces strictly for your free afternoons and evenings. Once you’ve done your day’s work, log out of your online platforms, close your emails and clean up your workspace. Many students find it helpful to write a new to-do list for the next day, so that you can finish with today’s tasks and be well prepared for the next day. Give it a try!
In the absence of after school activities, it’s important to find other ways to make time for hobbies and socializing. Schedule chats with your friends via WhatsApp or FaceTime, or start reading that book that’s been on your bedtime table for so long. The opportunities are endless and who knows, you might develop a totally new interest.
An international education at EF Academy prepares high school students for success at university and beyond.