Avoiding the temptation: how to balance leisure with academic duties

Gym, rooftop pool, barbecue place, games room, high speed wi-fi internet. All these amenities are difference makers within a student residence. In fact, exercising and socializing are important aspects amonglong study periods.However, students should be careful not to let these distractions get in the way ofcertain academic duties: attend all classes on time, work on exercises, study for exams andhand in individual and group assignments.

Having access to high-speed internet helps in researches and communication with colleagues. Yet, students need to be really focusedonce social media, texting apps and video streaming platforms can jeopardize any study schedule. Facebook and WhatsApp groups help in the exchange of academic material and ideas for certain projects. Nonetheless, while studying, texting, commenting and sharing online content should be set aside.

It is recommended to organize activities by using a simple appointment book or an online calendar, helping to balance leisure and studies. There are many different models and free apps that can be downloaded for this purpose. For those “less digital”, writing the appointments down either in an agenda or in a mural – which is visually nice inside an apartment – already helps a lot. The goal is to set specific days and periods dedicated to studies and to organize other moments to social and leisure activities. Some teachersset weekly papers that compose final grades, so these dates should be contemplated on students’ agendas.

Overall, organization prevent students from failing exams and enable them to enjoy 100% of their holidays. Having this in mind, it is really worth itto balance social and academic activities during the classes period.

An idea that helps students focusing on their assignments is to attend reading and study rooms, inside the campus or at the student residence’s facilities. These are calm and silent environments that optimize study time.

Another solution is to sit in a Café on campus or in its surroundings. For those with a tight schedule because of an internship, a part of the lunch break could be used to read academic material, for example.

Creating the habit of attending public or private libraries is an excellent alternative – not only providing the ideal conditions for the students to focus on their tasks, but also containing many books that help in specific projects and researches. In São Paulo, there are many great libraries that can be recommended, such as Mario de Andrade (República), Alceu Amoroso Lima (Pinheiros), Paulo Duarte (Jabaquara) and Biblioteca de São Paulo (BSP), inside Parque da Juventude. In addition of being accessible by metro and bus, these are beautiful and inspirational places. Last but not least, let’s not forget their main advantage: helping students to keep up with academic activities.

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