Getting ready to go back to school can be a stressful, but exciting time. There are doctors’ appointments and haircuts to schedule, and of course, school supplies to buy. Coronavirus has changed the way we interact, drastically impacting the experience of shopping and going to school. With so much uncertainty, it is hard to feel confident about anything, but one thing is certain. Regardless of whether a child is expanding their mind at home or at school, being equipped with the right resources and tools is critically important for learning and development. Hybrid and E-Learning plans are changing the requirements of what it means to truly be an organized student, but with a few good tips and new habits, anyone can be prepared.
Digital vs Physical Notes
We know that writing something down helps us learn, over and over scientific studies have proven it, but when all your schoolwork is online it can be hard to only take notes on paper. Recently, I have been trying a simplified version of The Medium Method which incorporates the benefits of both digital and physical note-taking.
To use The Medium Method, you will need:
- 1 Main Notebook
- Post-it Notes
- Task Management App/Online Calendar
Step 1: Actually Use Your Notebook
Your notebook is where you will write everything important that happens during the day. This includes; what you talk about in class discussions, lecture notes, homework assignments, and anything else you need to do. At the end of each day, review what you’ve written in your notebook to process it all fully.
Step 2: Update Your Calendar
After reviewing your notes, add any new due dates or appointments to your calendar app. Then take a moment to cross off finished tasks in your reminders/task manager app. It may seem silly, but marking a task as “finished” is very fulfilling.
Step 3: Plan Tomorrow’s To-Do List
Using a sticky note is a great way to force yourself to prioritize tasks. There is a limited amount of space, so you can really only fit 3-5 tasks on it. Incredibly urgent assignments can get both a sticky note and a calendar reminder. Stick the post-it to the screen of the computer or your notebook to see it first thing when you start working the next day.
8 Tips For Getting Organized:
In addition to upgrading your note-taking system, we put together a list of tips for staying organized this year.
Skip the Stores and Shop Online Instead
Getting the family to different stores is always chaotic. It is even more challenging now with guidelines that recommend shoppers to follow social distancing, regular hand washing, and the wearing of face masks. Give yourself a break and avoid the mad dash at the stores this year. Instead, shop from the comfort of your own home.
Make A Space To Study With All Your Supplies
Even when the entire family is confined at home, there are ways to make at-home learning fun and effective. Make sure your children aren’t falling behind and that they return to school ready by giving them an excellent space for learning at home. If you were in class, you would have a place to put belongings, like a locker or backpack. If you can, everyday use one dedicated space for schoolwork, like a desk. If you don’t have a desk or need to share your space, set up to study at the dinner table and use your backpack or a small box to hold your books, chargers, and other school supplies.
Color Code Your Notebooks And Folders To Particular Subjects
A majority of your school work will be online, but occasionally you may want to print out worksheets or articles. Set a color for each class, using a zippered portfolio is a great way to organize notes and a few sheets of paper, especially because you can always replace the notepad once the class is over! For classes with lots of handouts, a binder makes organizing information by chapter super simple. Wasting time searching for that one math sheet, or finding history notes in your science notebook will be a thing of the past.
Use A Planner, And Live Ahead Of Schedule
It’s very easy to underestimate how long a particular assignment or project will take. Instead of rushing to finish homework a few hours before it is due, plan to finish it a day or two early. Especially because you can see almost all your online assignments in advance. Living ahead of schedule will push you to embrace good study habits, and you’ll avoid begging your teacher for extra credit.
Use Bookmark Folders To Collect All Your Online Resources For Classes
Similar to color-coding classes, group all the websites for one class subject together. By naming your bookmarks something clear and relevant, you avoid scrambling to find that one article you read three weeks ago.
Clean Up Your Inbox
It might feel like you last checked your school email ages ago. Avoid missing important emails because there are an overwhelming amount of notifications by; filtering out spam, marking teachers and professor emails as important, and archiving old emails.
Always Create Back-ups
GoogleDrive, Dropbox, or a hard drive are all great ways to be sure you can always access that paper you’re in the middle of editing.
Give Your Eyes A Break From The Screen
More and more people are wearing anti-blue light eyeglasses, but occasionally we all need a break! Getting up to stretch, get a glass of water or a snack is a great way to take a short break. By dividing up your day and taking 5-10 minute breaks each hour, you end up being more productive and making fewer mistakes.
The hardware and software you need for online learning are all available and we have products to make you more comfortable as you absorb the material. A separate but critical point is whether online learning will work for everyone and that is not yet known because it’s never been tried on such a large scale.
Education experts agree that if you’re having a tough time, do not hesitate to ask for help. School districts have resources and people you can call and express your feelings about online learning. It’s still a human world we live in, and we’ll get through this together!
Here are some great products that can help you get back to school whether it’s in the classroom or from home!
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9 1/2″ x 12″ Zipper Leatherette Portfolio with Notepad – 15 Colors$48.00
Leatherette Portfolio with Notepad – 16 Colors & 2 Sizes$31.00 – $46.00
1 Inch Binder with Full Color Cover$37.80
Personalized Leatherette Binder – 6 Colors$36.72
8GB Glass USB Flash Drive with White LED Light & Presentation Box$35.00
Personalized Insulated Lunch Tote$34.00
Personalized Insulated Cooler Bag$32.00
Full-Color Portfolio with Notepad – 2 Sizes$24.20 – $31.32
8GB Anodized Aluminum USB Flash Drive$27.50
Leatherette Journal – 14 Colors$24.00
Journal with Leatherette Cell/Card Slot – 3 Colors$23.96
Leatherette Book Cover with Snap Closure – 6 Colors & 2 Sizes$17.00 – $21.00
25oz Stainless Steel Water Bottle – 3 Colors$19.01
25oz Stainless Steel Water Bottle with Sport Cap – 5 Colors$19.01
Leatherette Eyeglass Case – 6 Colors$17.60
Leatherette Mini Pad with Pen – 15 Colors$16.80
Full-Color Mini Notepad with Pen$16.20
Leatherette Mouse Pad – 12 Colors$15.00
Bamboo Sticky Note Holder with Sticky Note Pad$14.00
Full-Color Mouse Pad$13.52
Leatherette Holder/Easel – 10 Colors$11.00
Full-Color Aluminum Bookmark$6.36
Bamboo Ruler – 2 Sizes$2.00 – $4.20
Leatherette Pen Sleeve – 11 Colors$3.60