The kitchen is the new classroom, the garden is the new playing field. Parents and guardians are the new teachers and the new science project is whatever mould is growing on the cup of tea on your bedside table. We know home learning is hard – some love it, some hate it. Even though exams are cancelled again though, it does not mean that you no longer have to try. That’s why we’ve got a quick guide to help you make the most of home learning.
Put your phone away (unless your teacher says otherwise)
Unless you need it to hotspot, or your teacher needs you to use it as a tool for the lesson, put the phone away just as you would in a normal classroom. We know it can be super tempting to take advantage of the fact that no one is giving you detention, and they can’t see that you’ve got it hidden under the desk, but it is just going to mean that you don’t get anything out of the lesson.
Don’t get mad at your parents
If your parents or guardians are working from home, or furloughed, the chances are that the house is pretty full and the bandwidth on the internet, pretty stretched. Up until now, you might have see it as their job to fix any issue, but they are just as stressed out about this situation as you are. Try to give them the benefit of the doubt – it will cause a lot less arguments.
Close any tabs that are not to do with school
Whether it’s internet shopping, the football scores or a YouTube video your friend just sent you, keep non-school-related tabs and windows closed. The minute your teacher looks away from their screen, or your parents disappear to make a cuppa, you know you will go straight onto them instead of doing what you are supposed to be. Delete the distractions, save them for later.
Keep the pets away from where you are working
It might feel great to have the cat curled up on your lap, or the dog bringing you toys, but unless they have insights into the causes of the Cold War or how to do your maths revision, keep them out of your workspace. We know it’s hard to shut the door in those beautiful little faces, but they will be a big distraction best left for break times. In fact, make playing with them, feeding them or walking them your break time treat.
Set up a work space (preferably out of your bedroom if you can)
One of the biggest struggles will be getting into the mindset of school when you are chilling on your bed or on the sofa. If you can, try to set up your workspace away from your bedroom where there are lots of distractions. You might find it helps you to sleep and relax in the evening as well, because you are not associating your chilled space with a work space.
Keep to school hours
It might be that you aren’t finding too many distractions a problem. It might be that you just don’t know when to switch off. Try to be strict with yourself on your timetable and keep the work you have to do to school hours. If you get given evening work, stick to your usual timetable for homework that you have when you are in school. Whether you usually do it straight after school or after dinner, sticking to a usual timetable is a good way to keep your routine in check and give you time to chill out as well.
Plan an evening to look forward to
When you are stuck at home for hours every day, it can be hard to motivate yourself to get stuff done. This is because it feels like you have endless time to tick things off your list. Planning something chilled or fun to do the evening will help you stay on track in the day, so that you know you only have a set amount of time to get your schoolwork done. We know that fun is in short supply, so give this a read.
If you are feeling lonely or isolated in the current pandemic, we’re here for you. Reach out to one of our Support Mentors here, and we will listen to you.