Members of the BYU–Hawaii ohana said getting a planner, taking time to de-stress and taking care of people’s mental health are ways to help make the most of remote classes.
Remote learning tips
Gaby Amaller, a junior from Canada studying business management and cultural anthropology, said it is essential for students to make time to be away from their studies and work and be involved in activities they enjoy.
“Do something that’s going to make you feel like you’re not a student, and you’re not an employee, just you are yourself,” Amaller said.
Her rule is to “work hard during the weekdays. But when Friday … comes, and Saturday and Sunday come, I do not touch my computer or look or think about anything to do with school,” she explained.
Rachel Kekaula, the director of Counseling Services, said, “Mental health is just as important as physical health.”
She said just like there are recommendations to wear masks and social distance to protect physical health, students should also take measures to take care of their mental health as well.
“Make sure you schedule in self-care and exercise. Then make sure you’re eating properly and nutritious meals regularly also. With physical distancing, it’s still important you feel socially connected with others. So find creative ways, whether it be on technology or finding some way to keep six feet, while connecting to someone. That’s going to be very important.”
Alli Barney, a junior from Utah studying political science, said she tries to set aside the time she would have been in class to study because of the lack of structure with remote classes.
“That way I’m not spending the whole morning just hanging out and then trying to rush to do homework in the evening. But if my class was going to be from 10 a.m. to 10:50 a.m., then I’ll spend 50 minutes to an hour getting everything done for that class, and then I can feel like I can move on.”
Barney also encouraged new students to get a planner and go to Zoom meetings, even when they are not mandatory.
“Go to Zoom meetings. It’s good, so your professor knows your face. When they’re grading you, they can see your personality coming through because they’ve met you instead of just being a name behind a screen.”
Amaller shared she finds attending Zoom meetings is the closest she can get to the feel of in-person classes and helps her organize.
Kekaula said students can still call and make online appointments and find help through Counseling Services on campus despite classes being held remotely.
“I just wanted to make sure students know even though we’re remote, and they might not be on campus, or even in the state. We’re still open. We still want students to reach out to us if they need help.”
She added Counseling Services would also be holding online groups for students to attend remotely. These groups will cover topics such as stress reduction, self-esteem, anger management and couples counseling.
Students can go to counseling.byuh.edu to find dates and times for these groups as well as other useful counseling resources.