Remote learning to continue into second semester

How can students stay engaged and active while doing school at home?


Graphic by: Erin Geschwender

Callie Cook, Staff Writer

Over the last couple weeks, Nebraskans watched as the COVID-19 numbers increased rapidly. Some are saying it’s due to the fact that schools are still open. 

Many parents have been switching their children to online school to try to stay away from the vastly spreading virus. But, are students willing to stay focused during school while they are at home? What  help them stay productive?

Emma Lauritsen is a sophomore at Lincoln Southeast Highschool (LSE). She recently transferred to online school this year due the increase of COVID-19. She somewhat struggles with staying productive during school while she is at home. She has been doing online zoom for about one month now, and claims that she is liking it better than going to school.

“I switched to online school because the COVID numbers were increasing and so were the risks of getting the virus. And I am liking it a lot better than actually going to school,” Lauritsen said.

Staying at home can be very fun, but how can students stay focused in class when they are surrounded by many things that could distract them? What are good ideas and ways to stay engaged in class? According to, there are three ways for at-home students to stay engaged in their classes:

  1. Move more- They talk about how even though you are at home, it is still good to get some exercise in. School seems to tire students out, so it is a good idea to keep moving around even though you are at home.
  2. Reduce eye strain- Staring at your screen all day can tire your eyes out and cause headaches. They explain how our eyes work a lot harder when we are looking at a computer screen, than they do reading a book. They give some ideas by saying to turn down the brightness in the morning, and it would be a good idea to get blue light glasses.
  3. Make it feel as “real” as possible- They give advice on how it is good to still talk to the teacher even though you are not physically there with them. They share how it’s a good idea to try to keep your phone away from you so that you do not end up getting distracted.

Lauritsen said that, after she started doing online school, she doesn’t like to stay in one room the whole day. “I find it better for me to switch places where I do school because the more I stay in one spot, the more bored I get and end up getting distracted.” Lauritsen finds that it is best for her to try to limit the amount of time she uses on her phone, because otherwise she can end up spending hours looking on social media and texting her friends when she should be engaged in her classes.

Your body gets tired from not moving in a certain amount of time. It is always good to take breaks from sitting and to walk around whenever you can. According to, they claim that it only takes ten to twenty minutes for your body to get tired from sitting. And since these online students are not at school, they are less likely to get up and move around just because they are in the comfort of their own home. According to, they say “sitting is the new smoking.” They go on and talk about how sitting for long periods of time can cause many risks due to the lack of movement your body is getting. Like type 2 diabetes, cancer, and heart disease. 

“My whole family is all pretty active and I usually tend to never sit for more than 2 hours. I like to get up go do something to take a break and relax my mind,” Lauritsen said. 

Staying engaged in class at home, while trying to stay active, may seem like two hard things to juggle at the same time. But it ends up to be one simple routine you didn’t plan on doing without having to think about it. There are many ways to stay productive through online learning, just find the one best for you!