Tips on learning during the COVID era

Reading Time: 3 minutes

No one really knows what to expect now that classes are largely going to be online this semester. What will tests be like? What do I do if I don’t understand a concept?

Well, it’s okay to be nervous – most of us are. Without trying to sound cliché, we are in unprecedented times and nobody has all the answers. It’s okay to just relax because things will work themselves out.

With that being said, working and learning from home is something new for many of us, so here are some tips from faculty and students on how to make the best of it.

#1: Organize and plan

Being away from a normal work or school environment can tend to make some people less inclined to do the work they would normally do. They’re not as ambitious to finish things ahead of time because they aren’t in a place that highly encourages academics, and that’s okay.

Keeping a planner, using reminders on your phone, and writing down to-do lists to help you keep track of what you have to do and for when can be a huge help. It will decrease the amount of stress you’re under because you won’t be rushing to finish the last-minute project you forgot was due tomorrow.

#2: Sometimes doing the bare minimum is okay

We have all seen the posts about using self-isolation to do the absolute most. People are learning to play instruments and learn a language, and that’s so great!

But some of us can’t do that, and that’s okay. COVID-19 has impacted all of our mental health, and feeling guilty about not doing everything is the last thing we need.

Something that may help is setting a goal for yourself outside of school to achieve each day. It can be anything from making your bed and eating food, to getting out for a walk or a run.

Remember, do what’s best for you and only you. It’s okay to allow yourself time to unwind and feel tired. That’s your body telling you to take a step back.

#3: Find your most productive time, and take breaks

Tip three comes from a UNB faculty member. They suggested to try and figure out a time of day that you work best. Whether it be in the morning, or at night, figure out a time and schedule yourself time slots for the things you have to do.

For instance, if you work best in the morning, at 9 you can work on your paper, at 9:30 your math work, and then at 10, you can take a break. That way, you will optimize your work time, you will have your best ideas, and you can be your most productive self.

And always remember: Take breaks!! Don’t overwork yourself. Eat when you need to and keep your distractions to a minimum.

#4: Set a routine

The best thing about working from home is that you can set yourself a routine and optimize your time. The worst part about it, though, is that you are your own boss and it is easy to slip out of that routine.

Self-discipline is difficult for many people, but incorporating some of the previous tips and scheduling your time wisely can help keep yourself on a manageable routine.

#5: Create your own workspace

One of the biggest things that helped me was having my own workspace with no distractions. That way, when I sat down to do my school work my brain and body knew it was work time and that was the only thing I was focused on. Plus, if you need your phone, set it to airplane mode or do not disturb, so it is not constantly buzzing with distracting notifications.

Lastly, remember that this is a new experience for everyone, and it’s a great opportunity to learn new things about yourself and create new skills that can be of benefit in the future.

Taylor is in her fifth year of her Bachelor of Arts/Education and is double majoring in English and Psychology. She has an affinity for all things Shakespeare, loves old books and has recently discovered a love for gardening! When not at school or work, you can find her perusing thrift stores, collecting beach glass, or watching birds. She is a proud Taylor Swift fan (we only listen to Taylor's Version here) and also believes pasta should be a food group and that gummy bears qualify as a healthy breakfast.