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         By Scott Lutostanski

We are in uncharted territory. As schools scramble to get their districts up and running online, one thing is for certain: school is going to look very different for the unforeseen future (perhaps the end date has been determined by the time you’re reading this).

With all these changes in school, it creates new challenges and obstacles for students to continue their learning in an effective and productive way. For some students, this may be an extremely challenging period of time. Below are some areas for students to focus on to ensure that they are being successful with remote learning.

Calendar and Structure: Face-to-face classes are being replaced with online materials and (perhaps) videos. This is important for many reasons, the most of which is to not fall behind. Typically, a student may be in class anywhere from 4-7 hours each a day. That means, they may have that much time in worksheets, homework, reading, and videos. Falling behind by only a couple days will create a mountain of time to get caught back up. To stay on track, students need a structured schedule that outlines their day. This should, essentially, replicate class periods. 

Sleep and Exercise: Students have routines. They play sports, they walk to school, they move around. We are now living in a stationary world. With school out, the need to wake up and be moving around is eliminated. It is important for students to keep a fairly structured sleep schedule and continue to wake up early and start work in the morning. The longer students wait to get started, the more difficult it will be to get going. The closer they can keep their weekly sleep and exercise routine to what they had at school, the better. 

Study Environment- Students will be spending a lot of time with their computer and/or books. Now that they’re at home all day, they need to make sure they create a workspace that will let them be productive and effective. They need multiple places in the home where they can get hours of work done at a time. This will be much more challenging because they won’t be in the comfort of their schedule and their stops at the library or study centers.

Computer Rules- Students should have a computer system. Each time they sit down to do work, they need to follow the rules of the system. This system is intended to minimize distraction and optimize focus. It should address things such as where their cell phone should be (in another room), are they blocking certain websites, what materials do they need to have out, what apps are off limits, etc. By sticking to a set of rules, students will have an increased chance of engaged learning.

The rest of this school year will be challenging for students. They are being thrown a curveball, and it will be up to them to adjust and adapt in order to maintain a successful semester. One of the biggest challenges is the isolation. Our coaches are ready to work with students on a weekly basis to make sure they are putting themselves on the path to success. Check out this information on How to Maximize Remote Learning. 

If you’re interested in getting an academic coach for your student to work with through this turbulent time, send us an email at info@galineducation.com.