Spring Semester Kick Off
Welcome to 2021! We hope that your spring semester is off to a good start.
Some students are returning to school in-person, while other schools have opted to delay. Most students are doing some form of online or blended learning and self-directed learning is incredibly challenging for students in gradeschool! We'd like to share some tips for setting up your home learning environment and routines.
Creating an Effective At-Home Workspace
It's usually easier to change your environment than it is to change your behavior. Get off on the right foot by optimizing your workspace. These tips apply to both adults and students!
1) Externalize your thoughts. Stuck on a problem? Not sure how to kick off a paper or a project? Get it out of your head! Use whiteboards, chalkboards, or scrap paper to facilitate brainstorming. Also, try to talk it over with a family member or a friend.
2) Find ways to replicate your "normal" school day. Try to start your day, have lunch and end your day at the same time. If you used to study in a group, see if you can meet up with your study group over Zoom.
3) Remove distractions. Unplug the TV and game consoles. If needed, install apps on your computer and phone that prohibit accessing certain websites or apps.
4) Ask your family to respect your study space. Set clear expectations that when your door is closed, you are not be be interrupted because you are at school. Otherwise, you may be interrupted constantly throughout the day.
5) Invest in computer accessories. If you are going to be at a computer for 4+ hours a day, consider getting a full-size keyboard, Bluetooth mouse, foam wrist supports, and other devices that make your life easier. Many adults use a second monitor to facilitate their work - students can also benefit from this as well!
6) Get a printer! Don't try to keep everything in your head or on a digital device. Print out your class slides, worksheets and notes and file them in a binder. This helps relieve your working memory.
7) Have a big workspace and spread out. Try to keep all of your papers and binders within arm's-reach. "If it's out of arm's reach, it might as well be on the moon." Working at a small desk (or in your bed) can inhibit your productivity.
8) You don't need to have a pretty workspace. It's okay if you have your papers and binders out as long as you have a system of organization. If you can find it, it's not disorganized.
9) Seek external help when needed! Parents hold so many roles in the household. Adding a role as teacher or taskmaster might push your family dynamic to a breaking point. Use friends, other family members or external specialists to help fill these roles.
Star Tutoring: Online | In Center | In Home
Please let us know how we can support you and your students this spring semester. We are available for free consultations and we love to share learning tips and strategies. If you have family or friends that need help, please share Star Tutoring with them. As a local Dallas business, it really helps!