Changing from a physical classroom learning environment to a virtual one is a huge adjustment. This is an adjustment that many students around the world are still, understandably, having a hard time with. In this season of confusion and misfortune, it is very easy to feel hopeless, but one thing that can help is actively contributing to your own success. Although there are many things you can do to maximize your success in virtual learning, there are five things, in particular, that are guaranteed to enhance your experience.
- Get ready at the beginning of the day just like you did pre-quarantine.
Because we are attending class from the comfort of our homes, it can be very tempting to just roll out of bed and sit in class in your pajamas. Even though this is a convenient option, it doesn’t help your level of productivity at all. According to Lauren Geall from the Stylist, “… shirking the responsibility of getting dressed could actually have a negative impact on our productivity, sleep patterns and perhaps most significantly, our mental health.” Another thing that should be included in getting ready for a day of virtual classes is taking care of hygiene. This means getting in a warm shower, brushing your teeth, even taking off the bonnet or scarf and doing something with your hair. Taking a good shower and brushing your teeth are always good ways to start the day, even if that day is being spent in the house. You should style your hair, whether it be simple or extra cute, because that’s exactly what you would do if you were actually going to a classroom. Mirroring your pre-quarantine morning routine could be the difference between a day of productivity and a day full of naps with your classes playing in the background.
- Be ready for class 35 minutes prior to the starting time.
Just like us, our laptops and devices haven’t quite gotten used to virtual learning, either. There are days when whatever device you go to class on will not be cooperating with the site you have to log into. It is much better to find this out when you still have thirty minutes to do something about it (without being late) instead of scrambling to solve the problem right before class and making yourself unnecessarily late. Being ready early can help you avoid a lot of stress and anxiety.
- Try to set up your laptop or other device in a way that promotes good posture.
This tip is pretty self-explanatory, but it is important because taking classes from home forces you to sit for a large portion of the day. If you spend all day slouched in front of your device, it can cause back and neck pain. To avoid this, you should, According to Performance Therapies, “position your head approximately an arm’s length away from the screen” and sit with “elbows [at] approximately 90 degrees.”
- Develop a daily routine that you stick to.
Developing a daily routine can help you maintain a calm and non-chaotic environment. There will be no questions about what you have to do and an effective routine can help you to stay motivated. Another thing that a daily routine helps with is procrastination. While it won’t completely eliminate this problem, it will definitely help you to know and to clearly see exactly how much time you have to get an assignment done; this prevents deadlines from sneaking up on you. Having a daily routine adds consistency to your life and therefore, alleviates stress.
- Have study sessions with classmates via FaceTime or Zoom.
Having study sessions is always a good idea; there is always something to be gained or given with a study group. You are not always going to be able to understand everything on your own and neither will everyone else. Having a study session also helps you and your classmates to hold each other accountable and build relationships with each other. Maybe you and your classmates could even have a chill session after you finish studying, and just like that you will have new acquaintances, and eventually, friends.
Although virtual learning is not ideal, since it is happening we might as well make the best of the experience.