Tasking Vs. Batching

We believe one of the most effective time management techniques is a method known as batching. It allows a student to increase their concentration and decrease distractions. Batching is especially useful for those with learning differences or ADHD who have a hard time focusing on their school work.

Bonus: This method is also known to promote creativity and overall productivity while eliminating stress and fatigue.

Batching is the process of bundling similar tasks that use similar resources for an easier path to completion. Unlike multi-tasking, where you work on a number of different projects at once, diverting your focus, batching allows you to group your similar tasks into different time blocks and take a break after each block is completed.

Peter Bregman submitted an article to the Harvard business journal that indicated productivity goes down nearly 40% when we attempt to focus on several things at once.  As much as we think we can do it and may even think we are good at it, the brain is not designed to multi-task, so the less task switching involved, the more productive and accurate the product. That is why multitasking is such an outdated technique. It requires you to jump from project to project and creates room for distractions. Because most students, by default, think that it is the fastest way to complete their projects, it’s important to introduce new methods of learning and hopefully move away from the outdated practice of multi-tasking.

Our Most Used Batching Method: The Pomodoro Technique

(Create a batch of tasks, work in sprints and take regular breaks to stay motivated.)

Step One: Create a game plan by making a list of the tasks that need to be completed.

Step Two: Decide which tasks are similar and write them down again, in the form of a group.

Step Three: Set a timer for an allotted amount of time and devote that time to your group of tasks, or batch.  After completing each Pomodoro, you put an “X” next to it and mark the number of times that you were distracted.

Step Four: Take a 5-10 minute break

Step Five: Begin another block of time, or Pomodoro

Step Six: After completing 4 Pomodoros, take an extended break.

Helpful Pomodoro Apps:

Marinara Timer (Web), Tomighty (Win/Mac/Linux), Pomodorable (OS X) , Focus Timer (iOS)

Take Away:

Have a visual of what you would like to get done in one day or afternoon and group like items together. Turn off phone and social media, or use an app like “Freedom-Reduce Distractions” to help you minimize your distractions and need to multitask.

A Little Plug:

The Integrative Study Lounge teaches students a modified version of the Pomodoro through what we call Power Sessions and direct instruction on organization, planning, prioritizing, time management and more of the skills that come under the umbrella of executive functioning skills. This allows students to get more done in less time with greater efficiency.

For more info, please contact Michelle at michelle@integrativeet.com.


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