Tips for Staying Awake in Class

students listening to a teacher

If you didn’t get sufficient sleep last night, then there’s a high chance that you might fall asleep in class. During this situation, you most likely couldn’t keep yourself concentrated because your mind is constantly telling you to get rest, so you’re going to miss out on plenty of lectures and lessons while sitting in the classroom.

Along with the lack of sleep, there are several other reasons why you have trouble staying awake. To fight all of these reasons why you’re sleepy in class, here are several tips to know in order to stay awake and focus on your teacher’s lectures properly.

Stick to a Sleep Schedule

Teenagers or young adults tend to stay awake for more than five hours after dinner, and this is often not good for their health. As mentioned before, lack of sleep leads to sleepiness, so you must do something about your problematic sleep schedule if you only sleep for four to five hours.

Experts recommend that students should sleep seven to nine hours a day. If you have a 9 am class, you should probably sleep from 10 pm to 11 pm, and when you wake up at 6 am or 7 am, you will still have a lot of time to prepare for school. But if you sleep too early, there is still a chance that you can get sleepy in school since there is plenty of time between the moment you woke up to the start of your class, and your energy slowly depletes during that gap.

You should follow a strict sleep schedule so that you can control yourself in sleeping too early or too late. Your body will also get used to your sleep schedule, which will eventually lead to you waking up on time without the use of an alarm.

Eat a Small Meal During Lunch

Each time we consume a lot of food, our body usually produces too much insulin. The produced insulin will then increase the levels of serotonin and melatonin in our bodies, and these chemicals are the ones that make us sleepy.

To prevent having too much serotonin and melatonin in your body, you shouldn’t eat a large meal during your lunch break. Also, you must drink water regularly during your lunch break and even during your class to avoid getting tired easily because of dehydration.

Be an Active Participant in Class

a student raising his hand to ask a question

Sleepiness will get to you if you are just sitting and not doing anything, so you must participate in class by raising your hand and answering your teacher if a question is asked or by talking with your classmates during discussions.

In addition, you can just take notes regularly during lectures so you can keep your mind occupied in writing.

Avoid Sitting at the Back

Although this is not the case for some classrooms, students who sit at the back are usually the ones who don’t listen too much and want to avoid the teacher’s gaze whenever they are taking a nap or talking to their friends in class. As such, you should avoid sitting there to prevent yourself from getting influenced into sleeping in the classroom.

But another reason why students tend to sit in the back is that they are too shy to participate in class discussions and recitations. Sitting at the back is still not a good idea if this is the situation since you sometimes need to actively participate if you have a problem with sleepiness, as stated in a previous tip.

You should take a seat in the front where the teacher can easily see you. But if you are shy, you can just take one of the seats in the middle of the classroom. Your mind should remain focused for the most part since you are aware that the teacher will see you if you take a nap.

Take a Break

If you’ve followed all the tips mentioned above and you still feel sleepy, which is sometimes normal, then you might want to ask your teacher for a bathroom break, but don’t ask him or her during important lectures.

During your bathroom break, you might want to walk or run around the hallways to get you energized again, as sitting for long periods can really get you sleepy since there’s not much to do other than to listen to your teacher.

You can also do jumping jacks or other simple exercises besides walking or running to get you pumped up. If exercise doesn’t work, splashing cold water on your face in the restroom sink is effective in waking you up. But don’t take too long taking a break, as you might miss a valuable lesson in class while you’re gone.

If you can’t afford to take a break if there is a quiz or an exam in class, you should just do arm stretches while you’re sitting in your chair. However, don’t do too many stretches as a strict teacher might notice you and call you out for doing unnecessary things in class.

To get the best out of your teacher’s lessons, you should always remain focused on what is being said by him or her, and you should keep your mind occupied to the lectures and not to the thought of finally getting rest after school. Following the tips and sticking to your goal of getting good grades and is the best way for you to get rid of sleepiness in class.