Get your “me time” – Best time management tips for students

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“The time you enjoy wasting is not wasted time” – These are the words of John Lennon. Does that mean you should binge on your favourite shows endlessly? Or spend most of your day laying on the couch? Of course not! But we all need a bit of ‘me time’ doing things that we like or just casually enjoying the passage of time. The problem is, there are so many pending activities on our daily list that enjoying time makes us feel guilty and our parents worried.

We all have only 24 hours a day. It is about how well we manage our time, rather than how much time we have. In the current scenario of online learning, it is critical to managing time effectively. Many students struggle to complete their online assignments, feeling stressed and frustrated. So, if you are a parent and worried about your child or a student struggling to finish your daily assignments, read on. Here are some proven tips to accomplish more by managing your time and getting the “me time” you deserve.

How to stay organized? 6 best time management tips for students

#1. How to prioritize tasks:

Planning your studies for the week or month is extremely crucial. It will help you decide how much time you should invest studying different subjects. First, check if you have any internal tests or exams scheduled. Keeping the exam dates in mind, maintain a study planner that lists the names of the subjects and chapters that you need to revise each day of the week. Don’t forget to set time aside for homework, projects and assignments. Mark the submission date for these using a different colour.

Determining the importance of each task allows you to organize the workload and create a realistic plan to deal with the tasks at hand. Despite the flexibility that online learning offers, it is crucial to engage with your assignments throughout the week.

Here’s how you can optimize learning using the 4-step prioritization.

  • Step 1: Understand each task – Ensure that you have a complete understanding of each task, how long would it take to be completed and when each task is due.
  • Step 2: Rank each task – Break down each of the tasks into a numbered list. This sets the order to complete each task and allows you to focus on them individually.
  • Step 3: Set deadlines and stick to them – Set realistic deadlines to tackle each task. For instance, if you know the English essay would take 2 hours, don’t rush to finish it in 45 minutes.A tip: Give yourself some buffer time between two subjects/tasks. That way, if you take longer to complete an assignment, you won’t fall behind.
  • Step 4: Be flexible – If you are hitting a dead-end with one subject, it is okay to be flexible and work around the issue.

#2. Use a planner:

Using a planner is a practical way to keep track of things. A study planner helps in remembering the assignment due dates. Each morning, you can open the planner to see the subjects to be done that day. The planner helps you plan your week enabling better time management.

#3. Stay organized and positive:

Staying positive and motivated can be challenging for students in the present time due to a lack of social interactions with teachers and friends As a parent, help your child stay organized and ensure that you include extra-curricular activities, playtime, workout sessions and free time in their daily schedule.

Jot down a to-do list indicating the key tasks to be done daily. Your list must be realistic. Ticking off items on a to-do list is satisfying and motivates children to finish their tasks.

#4. Design a personalized routine:

Remember, a routine that works for one student may not work for all. Each child is productive at different times of the day and has a varied attention span.

Here are some tips for scheduling the main tasks of the day using a personalized routine.

  • Use sticky notes, a study planner and a study tracker to decide when you’ll take breaks and how long each task takes.
  • Make sure that the daily routine isn’t entirely different from the school timings.
  • Dress up as if you’re going to work, drop off the pajamas and wear a cool dress.
  • Experiment and fix a routine that works for you.
  • Find the time when your productivity is the highest and use that period to finish the most challenging assignments or subjects.

#5. Avoid procrastination:

Here are some time management strategies to deal with procrastination:

  • Manage motivation – The main reason students procrastinate is that they do not see the schoolwork as relevant to what they’re doing now. Parents and teachers can ensure that their academic tasks are interesting, important and useful. This way, they are more likely to try harder to get the coursework work and less likely to put it off.
  • Block out distractions – Is your child’s learning environment conducive for studying?For example, set up the surroundings to suit your child’s learning habits such that you block out noises.Some students enjoy studying in a quiet and dark space with a spotlight. Others prefer a learning environment where they use a standing desk next to a bright window.
  • Reward after the task is done – To avoid burnout, reward the accomplishment by allowing you to indulge in something you truly enjoy. This could be watching the favourite show or playtime.
  • Use the Pomodoro technique in which you break your work into intervals separated by short breaks. Pomodoro is the Italian word for tomato. Italian university professor Francesco Cirillo developed the Pomodoro technique. He got the inspiration for this technique from a tomato-shaped timer in his kitchen. There are 6 steps in this technique:
    1. Divide the task into smaller chunks.
    2. Set the Pomodoro timer to 25 minutes.
    3. Work on the task.
    4. Stop the task when the timer rings and put a checkmark on a paper.
    5. Take a short break of 5-10 minutes.
    6. Return to step 2.
    As you progress, you can take longer breaks. After achieving more than 4 checkmarks, you can take 15 –30 minutes long breaks.

#6. Utilize free time for exercise:

Physical activity boosts body and brain functions, so it is no surprise that exercise can help students do better in online classes. The benefits of physical activities for students include improved concentration, memory and classroom behaviour.

If you are wondering how to utilize the free time for physical activities in the present lockdown situation, check out the 7-minute exercise routine. The 7-minute exercise routine is a scientifically proven set of exercises done at home without any equipment. All it takes is 7 minutes of your time and some motivation to stay healthy. There are many free apps available on your smartphone that can coach you on these exercises.

How does Tata Studi save students’ learning time?

Staying organized and managing time requires some effort. The irony is you need to be a better time manager to improve your time management. Tata Studi aims to solve this problem. India’s leading after-school learning app for kids, Tata Studi helps inculcate effective study habits in children, inspiring them to be independent learners.

For students and parents wondering how to make a study routine, Tata Studi’s adaptive planner helps plan what to study, when and for how long.

Impactful bite-sized learning videos for every chapter help students better understand the logic behind each topic, enabling them to retain information for a longer period.

Parents can track the child’s progress. They can assign tests and worksheets to monitor learning.

Repeated practice, self-tests and feedback, which are vital to boost a student’s confidence are the core areas being addressed by Tata Studi.

Planning, practising and perfecting online classes get easier with Tata Studi and with the 6 powerful time management tips for students.

Setting up good habits for effective time management doesn’t have to happen all at once to be useful. By taking one or a few of the tips from this list, you can set realistic, small goals. Choose a few of these tips that you feel are the most beneficial or easier to adopt.

Try to measure your progress and reward yourself for the small changes you’re making to better manage your time.

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