In light of the CDC recommendations around social distancing during the COVID-19 pandemic, Turing School has decided to take our 2003 (March 2020) module fully remote for the safety of our students, staff and greater community.
That’s right, we are joining the world’s largest work from home experiment and will conduct all business operations and student instruction online from March 16 - May 3. We’re making it happen with creative curriculum, consistent communication, and helpful tools like Slack, Zoom and Tuple.
We kicked off the remote module with a 200+ of our current students, staff and alumni attending a State of Turing via Zoom. There, a panel of Turing alumni who have worked remote for a while shared their advice and experiences. We closed the call with each of them sharing their top tip for successful and productive learning and working from home, check out what they had to say:
"When I first started at my job my mind would wander during video calls because it was hard to be in meetings about things I didn’t understand yet. I went on Amazon and bought a box of fidget toys and found that having my hands distracted helped my mind focus more. It’s really essential that you pay attention during instructional time and it’s easier to become distracted when the teaching is happening over video. Whether you knit, get a fidget spinner or just click a pen, find something that helps your mind relax and stay focused. If you notice wandering, don't get mad at yourself, try to discover the best method for you to quell it."
"What’s worked for me is having good processes and schedules and making sure to take Pomodoro breaks. Make sure those breaks are also productive in some way. Looking at social media for 5 minutes ends up a lot if you’re doing it 4-5 times a day."
"When your brain is struggling you’ll look for distractions by default. It’s important to listen to what your body is telling you. Your brain might be asking for a break, but it shouldn’t just be getting on Twitter or scrolling other social media. When I find myself trying to log on to Twitter, I get up and go for a walk instead to give my brain the break it needs, while staying six feet away from people!"
"The biggest thing I’ve learned is to make sure you ask specific questions. If you can’t communicate something effectively just hop on a call for 5 mins can help sync. Little things like this are great ways to make sure you are available and present for your fellow students or coworkers."
"I second all of this advice! At my company, we have a policy that if you’re messaging in slack or doing a code review and you have to go back and forth more than twice it becomes a Zoom call to solve the problem.
I know it’s hard to make time to read while you are in school, but I recommend the book Atomic Habits. You can also sign up for the author’s weekly email list. It’s all about this concept of habit stacking. I try to do it both in the morning and evening, so I can be explicit with boundaries between what is my home life and what is my work."