By, Hannah Frankenberry
Would you like to know the cheat sheet to an E-Learner’s success? Here’s a hint, it involves energy drinks, music, and 30-minute naps. E-Learners discover music in moments of stress. While comforted by the safety of their homes, from 9:00 am to past midnight, they work tirelessly on schoolwork. As a result, in order for them to stay awake and put forth their best efforts in homework, they need answers. To add on, the answer we have all longed for, is music and lots of downtime (hopefully that’s enough factors to keep E-Learners feeling motivated). Thankfully, there are E-Learners that were willing to share their point of view on the whole process, and the impact that it has had on their personal lives. ‘’I have little snack breaks or something. Other times if I am beyond tired, I take little 30-minute naps,” said Katiana Colon, a Virtual college student at USF. Those naps are what count, they help rejuvenate your mind and get you back on the right track.
Though, that’s not the only type of break that E-Learners have. It’s still very beneficial for students who work tirelessly through the night. ‘’I take little short 2-minute breaks, to just doodle or something, and collect my thoughts for a bit. If I work for too long then I will start getting a headache,” said Sam Rola, an 8th grade virtual student at Farnell Middle School. Headaches are the effect of being at the computer screen too long, and when you have a headache the first thing you want to do is rest. Unfortunately, when you’re an E-learner your reality tells you that bedtimes do not exist due to the amount of stress that we E-learner’s handle in just a single day.
‘’Students in different time zones than their institutions are now sacrificing sleep to wake up for classes on Zoom’’…’’ Altering regular sleep patterns affects the body’s circadian rhythm, or internal biological clock. Katzenstein explained that the circadian rhythm is based on light exposure, which is maintained by waking up when there is light out and going to sleep when it is dark. She added that increased screen time can have a negative impact on rhythm,” said Amrita Balram, who is studying to be Undergraduate Research Assistant at John Hopkins University. Due to E-Learning, students all over the district and even the United States are having to sacrifice their precious sleep so that they can get all of their assignments done on time. If this becomes a natural occurrence they will eventually force their brain into thinking they go to bed in the morning and wake-up at night, which would completely destroy their brain activity when actually in school or doing other activities in their personal lives.
Furthermore, even though the lack of sleep is the cause of the negative effect it has on the brain, music is the real cheat sheet to not letting your brain get tired easily. Sam Rola said, “Music just helps me keep focus on my assignment because it stops me from wanting to do something else, like watch YouTube or TV while I’m in the middle of an assignment. I also need noise to concentrate, and the genre of music that I listen to is called Pop and the songs are just so upbeat and easy for me to nod my head to anytime I am doing my work.’’ Music is very relaxing to me personally, as well, since it just allows me to really concentrate and cancels out any distractions that life brings to my attention. That one moment in life where you don’t have to worry about anything, and just focus on the peaceful sound of what life feels like, without having all of the chaos involved in it.”
Sound can also serve as a way for you to stay awake. Playing loud, energetic music can effectively wake you up through auditory stimulation of the brain. If you need to stay awake …play something fast paced and with a lot of bass, as it is more likely to stimulate your mind. In most situations, be sure to put on headphones so as not to bother everyone around you,’’ according to this article on staying alert. This allows E-Learners to imagine the place that they want to be rather than the place that they are currently, which motivates them to only focus on their assignments and block out all distractions. This also helps with managing the amount of sleep that they get in order to be living healthier. Katiana Colon said, ’I concentrate better when there’s no one singing in the songs that I listen to. I listen to Lofi beats,(instrumental), and it makes me feel like I’m in a coffee shop or in a office doing really important work.’’
In other words, there is a wide variety of music to choose from, and different moods that go along with it. Katiana Colon prefers songs with no words, whereas Sam Rola loves songs with words in them plus the beats in the background. I also have different Spotify playlists that I and my siblings created, Classical,(Songs from famous movie scores, and gaming beats), Clean EDM,(Lofi beats),Vibes(POP songs),Nostalgia(Songs from the past that are very catchy), and lastly my newest playlist, Childhood Favez,(Disney music, and musicals). The mood for classical revolves around studying mode, and everything else is just to motivate me to get stuff done and be productive with my life.
Finally, sugar is another vital part to an E-learners cheat sheet, especially during nighttime or even in the morning, (thank goodness there is still enough Halloween candy to go around). Caffeine is key in the mornings though, and Mtn Dew at nighttime,(Make that 3 cans). ‘’Ah yes, caffeine, the old standby. Whether it’s an energy drink, a spot of tea, or a good old-fashioned cup of coffee, this stuff is sure to help you stay awake. Caffeine is a psychoactive stimulant that increases wakefulness, attentiveness, the ability to focus, and overall energy levels’’,this article, mentioned. Like I said about the mtn dew, caffeine is perfect for giving people energy that’s its purpose and always has been. Every day I have to grab at least 3 Mtn dew cans to keep me up throughout the day. I even have a tiny fridge to prove it. It keeps the cans cold until I need them. Also, Music has no limit on the time of day that people listen to it the most, as well as sugar. Katiana Colon, said, ‘’I listen to music a lot throughout the day, but more often in the morning and especially at nighttime’’. Music is sugar for the brain. That’s why anytime someone opens up a pack of candy or drinks a sip of pop that they get a overpowering feeling of energy, and that is what puts them in the mood to listen to faster beats of music. With music, your brain is never unoccupied, and it keeps your brain active whether it’s at night or in the morning.
To conclude, the cheat sheet to every E-Learner’s success is music,energy drinks,and downtime. All those factors are needed for us E-Learners. We need at least a couple minutes away from the computer screen, and we need to find ways to make it fun. E-Learning is very stressful, but don’t let it take away your personal life, because if that’s the case you let E-Learning win. To all the E-Learners out there, and hardworking students and teachers, make the best of this year. 2020 has brought upon a lot of baggage but it is not over yet! Make the most of the breaks that you do get, for that may be the only break that you will get in a long time.