Tips for Staying Focused During Class

Tips for staying focused during class. Image of students in a classroom and a teacher smiling at the students.

We get it, staying focused during an hour-long class period can be challenging. It always has been, and the constant interruptions from technology certainly don’t help. Here are some tips for staying focused during class time.

Take Notes

Note-taking forces you to engage in class. Gathering information, summarizing it, and writing it down all help you to better retain the lesson and remember facts later on. Consider using these effective note-taking skills.

Find Opportunities to Move (Without Disrupting Class)

Give yourself opportunities to move your body in non-disruptive ways. Take a bathroom break when you feel tired or restless. You can also try seated stretches, like rolling your shoulders, stretching your neck from side to side, and extending your legs and pointing and flexing your toes. But again, be very mindful of your surroundings and try not to do anything that will disrupt or distract others.

Actively Participate in Class

Just like when you take notes in class, actively participating in class forces you to engage with the lesson and think critically about what you are learning. This will also be helpful for your retention of the information.

Think of Questions

As your teacher is lecturing, think of questions related to the lesson. Write down your questions as you go and see if your question is answered, or raise your hand and ask your teacher (then you can also incorporate this tip with active participation.) 

Reduce Distractions

If you are allowed to have a phone or computer in class, set your devices to “do not disturb” for the duration of class. Multitasking disrupts your learning and only makes it harder for you to get back to focus mode.

Other things that can help you stay focused in class are:

  • Getting enough sleep
  • Staying hydrated
  • Eating well

Make sure you set yourself up for success by maintaining healthy habits outside of the classroom, as often these can have a large impact on your success in school.