‘I wake up around seven in the morning for an online class. Because of the time difference between Australia and Thailand most of my online classes are between 8:00 am to 8:30; when I lived in Australia they were during lunchtime.
I usually catch-up with my teacher in the morning – these are super helpful. I also have class catch-ups which are super fun. I do my school work until around lunchtime.
If I’m up-to-date with schoolwork, I often go out into the villages and visit people with my parents in the afternoon. My parents are aid-workers, so this is a big part of my life. Sometimes I stay home in the afternoon to do work. I don’t study too late at night as I get tired.
I take a break for lunch and half an hour in the afternoon. I usually just eat, draw, text my friends and watch stuff. It’s important to not get too caught up doing these things and focus on schoolwork – but sometimes I can get distracted.
My main tip for anyone starting at VSV is don’t pressure yourself too much. It’s also important to celebrate the little victories, like finishing a maths module. If you keep going at your work you’ll finish in no time.’
How to keep motivated
‘I try to keep my study to school hours and have structure and routine in my day. This means that I know what I’m doing next and have time for all the things I want to do, whether it be catching up with friends, watching Netflix or taking photos.
Every morning I get up, have breakfast and get dressed. This makes me feel more prepared for the day. It makes me feel like I’m ready for school.
I always set a goal for the day; it could be completing a worksheet, SAC or an assignment. I’m very focused on achieving my daily goal.
I like to listen to music when I work – this not only puts me in a good mood but also helps keep me focused.
I take a short break at recess. For me, it’s important to leave my desk at recess so it feels like a break. I’ll often have a snack and watch a short YouTube video.
I’ll continue working towards my goal after recess. Sometimes I might email a teacher. I prefer emailing to the telephone as I like to have a written record of my teachers’ instructions or feedback.
Lunch is like a recess – I’ll leave my desk, have something to eat and do something for myself.
I will sometimes attend an online lesson in the afternoon, but I prefer watching recordings of lessons as they are easy to rewatch and I like having the flexibility for choosing when it fits into my day.
I often end my afternoon by preparing for the next day and setting goals. This means that I can get straight into my work the next day.’
Plan to succeed
‘Staying organised and working out a schedule that works for me is critical to how I approach my online studies.
I start every weekday with 25 minutes of yoga and weights twice a week. This helps wake me up and get my mind working.
I’m a planner so I like to map out my priorities at the start of the week and keep a list of what I need to submit. It’s important to know how much effort is required for each priority.
I break my day into three segments: morning, afternoon and evening.
I do a lot of administrative work when I start my study. I check emails, school news and announcements, check instructions on the portal and sometimes I email my teachers.
I like to study the subjects that I’m best at in the morning. Not only do I like to start the day doing something I enjoy, but I get satisfaction from submitting things and ticking off a priority.
For lunch, I come to the dining room and have something to eat. I like to relax so I have the energy for the afternoon. This could be reading, talking with my family or playing ping pong.
I attend a regular online session in the afternoon. This gives me a better understanding of the work.
If I have a lot of work, I’ll do homework in the evening for an hour or so. I sleep easier when I know I’m up-to-date with my work!’
Tips and Tricks
Communicate with teachers
‘Allocate a designated time to go through teachers’ feedback, communicate with your teachers and utilise your free periods at school.’
‘Finish your schoolwork in the morning so you are fresh. My mum and I have created a VSV submission tracker, which shows what we have done and how much time we have for each week of a module. This helps me to prioritise.’
Stay up to date
‘Use a timetable to avoid falling behind. Contact your teachers whenever you are behind in work, and make good use of the resources they can provide you with.’