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BWW Blog: Managing Virtual Theater School

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These are a few things that have been helping me keep track of everything and still get the most out of my education.  

BWW Blog: Managing Virtual Theater School

Going to school for theater can be a big adjustment from a typical high school education. Add in the fact that people are now taking theater classes virtually, it can be a lot to handle. The question I've been asked most this year is "How do you take theater classes online?" It certainly isn't what we had in mind for our education when we chose to go into this field, but here we are, tackling it head on. It can seem overwhelming, but these are a few things that have been helping me keep track of everything and still get the most out of my education.

The first big thing is to remember that you're not alone- even if you might be taking classes by yourself on a screen. Whether your classes are synchronous or asynchronous, you are still taking a class with a real professor and real classmates. You can always reach out to any of them to stay engaged or for help in class. Many professors may also have virtual office hours so take advantage of those, they are there so that you can use them! They want to hear from you and hear how you're doing. Having a chance to talk to your teacher or peers about your work outside of class time can help to remind you that you're still taking a real class, even though it's online, which can make it easier to forget about assignments and deadlines.

Dance and movement-based classes can be challenging online but there is still so much you can learn from them. Make sure you are still dressing properly for all your movement classes and warming up beforehand, just like you would during an in-person class. Don't allow yourself to get lazy about those things just because the class is online. The more prepared you are, the more you will be able to get out of class. Most teachers will work to adapt class to make sure it will work in a smaller space, but you definitely will need some room. Figure out what space will

work best for you ahead of time. If there's an open area in your house or a space where you can clear furniture, do that! Some dance studios and fitness centers are also renting out rooms with mirrors at discounted rates while they are not open. Talk to your school and find out if there are

any rooms you can use if on-campus facilities are open! Outside is also a nice option (in a private area) which can easily be used for class with a pair of wireless headphones. All that being said, also find time when you can get out from wherever you are taking classes. Days can feel cumbersome if you're stuck inside all day, so figure out times where you can get out; maybe go on a walk or do some work outside . This way, you're not in the same location all day and you make sure to get outside! Along with this, try to plan out a schedule for yourself. Figure out when you'll get up, eat, exercise, shower, go outside, do homework, etc. each day of the week. Having a schedule laid out, even if it is not strictly followed, ensures that your days have structure so you don't spend half the day sleeping or scrolling through TikTok (not that I would know anything about either of those things...)

One thing that has also been helpful is taking classes with my roommates! We are all in the same program, which certainly makes this idea easier, but we try to sit together for our lecture/seminar classes. This allows us to have face-to-face interaction during class, provided this is approved by your professor. Even just having 1 or 2 classes where I can physically take them with (3 other) people is awesome.

This semester is guaranteed to be unique for people all over the world so hopefully these ideas can help to make sure you still get the most out of it!

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From This Author Student Blogger: Matthew Green