Anyone ever wish they could be home-schooled and are now seriously regretting it? Attempting online classes and studying all day without being able to have a sly giggle and goss with the gal beside you or without those glances across the room with your bestie when your teacher insists on opening the windows again and freezing you all to death, is boring and tough. And we bet you’d take the freezing classrooms back in a second to be back to reality and have a social life.
It’s a very strange time, uncertain, uneasy and most importantly unproductive. Working from home can be so tough, with all the distractions of younger siblings wanting to play, your mam deciding to hoover every time you open a book and the classic moment when Netflix is calling you and you think poetry can wait. We kind of think it’s summer but its also most definitely not summer but we can’t seem to actually get anything worthwhile done…sigh!
There are some things you can do to help stay motivated and productive with schooling from home.
Yes, as much as sleeping in till 11:30 and making your way downstairs at 1 for brunch seems appealing, trying to do work at 3 pm still in your pj’s in a full house isn’t the best idea if you’re planning on being productive. Having a routine makes your mind feel like it still has some structure, like it did in school, which will help get into the study zone more easily and help you feel like you’re actually achieving something.
Set an alarm for the weekdays, it doesn’t have to be for 7am if you’re not an early bird, but even 9:15 and be ready to start work by 10. This gives you an early enough start and three hours work done by the time lunch comes at 1. Make a list of everything you’d like to cover (you could go by your class timetable or make your own schedule) that way you can tick things off as you go and feel the satisfaction of structure. If you work till 5 that’s a whole day done and you still have time for Netflix and walks in the evening. Don’t work through lunch or after your finish time, it’s important to give yourself time away from it and be able to switch off. Try it for a week and we guarantee you’ll feel much more productive.
Also, if your teacher isn’t doing online classes, but say that you can contact them, make use of that. Don’t be afraid to check in with your teacher about any questions you may have on their subject. It’s what they’re there for!
2. Goodbye Wifi
Okay, we know you need wifi to do online school, before you jump to to conclusions, we are not saying cut the source of wifi completely, but just try to turn off your phone internet while you’re studying. That leaves you free to work away on the laptop without the distraction of Snapchat notifications and Instagram tags luring you away from your work, and the temptation to post a pic of your set up so people think you’re studying (feel free to post the pic but then turn off the wifi and actually study!). Turn them back on on your break and after your ‘school day’ and watch the notifications come in, it’s nice to have stuff to catch up on after. Hey, you wouldn’t be on your phone in the classroom anyway, so this is no different.
3. Personal Space
This may be the toughest one of all. Not everyone has an area where they can work and get away from the family so this is one of the biggest obstacles. Try to find a space you know you work well in (not on or in your bed because your body thinks its time to relax when you’re there and that’s not the vibe we are going for here!).
Once you’ve decided on your location, set it up the night before, pens, notes, books and laptop laid out and ready, so it’s not a chore in the morning trying to gather all the stuff you need. If your location is the kitchen table, other distractions are inevitable. Try to work around your family, if they aren’t early risers, try start that bit earlier and get some work done before they come down, or if they tend to leave the house (for a socially distant walk of course) in the afternoon, maybe leave the important concentration topics until then. It’ll take a few days to learn what routine works for both you and them, but try to finish before dinner time, this can signify the end of the day and it’s always bound to be busy in the kitchen around then.
Yes, you’ve seen it on every bloggers Instagram and here it is again, It is SO important to get some fresh air and exercise while in isolation. Spending the day in front of a screen working and then moving to another screen for entertainment isn’t good for you, both can be done of course but get out for a walk between the two or do a home workout in the garden. It clears your head and allows your relaxation to be more productive as you’re not carrying the days stresses with you to your Vampire Diaries marathon. Just make sure you’re not meeting a group of friends to do it, there will be plenty of time to hang out IRL when we’re back to normal.
5. Take a break
Let’s be honest not everyone is a perfect, productive routine keeping ray of sunshine every day and in this situation a lot can be going on. It’s totally okay and normal to have off days, and days when you can’t motivate yourself. Take things slow on those days, do subjects you enjoy, and don’t be afraid to take the day off or a half day if you need it. All we can do is take this one day at a time, and get back to it the next day once we’ve had a breather. If you’re doing the study routine on weekdays be sure to take the weekends off, nobody can work all the time and you don’t want to burn out. Pace yourself and remember you can do this.
Hopefully you found some of these tips worked for you, if they did let us know @_kiss.ie and tell us what you find helpful while studying at home!
Words: Jade Carpenter