Let’s face it, whether you're in a DPT program now, or previously graduated, we all know there is a love/hate relationship with PT school. Of course we're excited to be a part of our DPT programs, but between the long days in class, the long nights reviewing the material we learned that day and preparing for the material we are about to learn tomorrow, sometimes we just need a break from classes even while we're sitting in them.
1. Go Down the Rabbit Hole that is Social Media
Chances are, some of you are probably reading this while you are sitting in your classrooms right now so you are already on top of your slacking during PT school game. Sites like NewGradPT, Facebook, YouTube and Twitter can all be viewed on your computer, and done quietly so you don’t draw attention to yourself while you are sitting in class. If you’ve used any of these social media sites, than you know how time consuming they can be. One article, video or tweet leads to another and another and all of a sudden your classmates are packing up there stuff and leaving you wondering “what just happened here”? It’s a mindless activity that can help you recharge your brain, while keeping you entertained.
2. Watch Sports on your Computer
So it doesn’t necessarily have to be sports if that’s not your thing, but the good thing about sports is that you don’t really need any audio to enjoy them. While we all probably watch March Madness when it comes on instead of paying attention at class (I still don’t know why the opening weekend of the tournament isn’t a national holiday, but that’s a discussion to have another day), it’s only on for a few days out of the year, so that doesn’t completely solve our problem. We can also watch golf and tennis majors when they are on to help fill the gap, and the start of major league baseball provides some additional options during the spring and summer semesters. One option that is readily available is soccer. You can often find soccer games online to watch throughout the course of the year when you just need something to watch. Not a soccer fan? Neither was I and neither were most of my classmates at the time, but that didn’t stop a few computers from finding their way to an afternoon soccer game during a long lecture.
3. Play Games Online
There are plenty of free websites out there that will let you play games online. Anything from board games like monopoly, chess, checkers and others to classic video games like Pacman and Supermario Brothers (hopefully you all know what those are because I don’t want to think that I’m that old). Find a group of friends and challenge them to a game, loser has to buy the first round of drinks that night.
4. Catch Up On Emails
Just because we need a break from class doesn’t mean we can’t be productive. As PT students we are consistently bombarded with emails from professors, classmates and friends. Taking a few minutes to catch up on those emails can help fill some time, but also leave you with the feeling of accomplishment (one less thing to worry about later in the day). Just remember if you are responding to emails during class, don’t email the professor that is teaching your lecture at the current moment, I’ve seen it happen, and the response is quite amusing for everyone else in the class, but not so much for the individual who made this crucial mistake.
When was the last time you just shut your brain off? If you are in PT school the odds are probably not since the day you walked through those doors for the first time. If you are finding it hard to follow a lecture, get work done or just concentrate in general, shut your brain off for a few minutes. If you are finding that you are having trouble focusing and retaining information that is being presented to you, take a quick 5 minute break to help you recharge. This short break may be just enough to help get you back on track and allow you to retain the rest of the information in the lecture.
We'd love to hear about how you spend your time during class, when you're not diligently taking notes. Leave a comment below or in the forums!