How to beat the boredom during “social distancing”
As schools close across the country for potentially weeks on end, students are stuck inside wondering how to spend their impromptu break due to the pandemic outbreak of Covid-19.
Health officials around the country are urging all people, no matter the age, health, or risk level, to stay inside and practice “social distancing,” or avoiding crowds and unnecessary social interactions with others to slow the spread of the virus and to prevent hospitals from becoming overrun.
Despite the obvious benefits to public health, it can be hard to stay entertained during this unprecedented time, especially without the distraction of school, work, and extracurricular events.
During this period of isolation, FaceTime and other video chat services like Skype or Snapchat are a student’s best friend. Since humans are social creatures, it is important to try and keep contact with close friends and family members during this time. These calls do not have to be limited to just talking. Feel free to grab a group of friends and play 20 questions, have a virtual dinner, or even play a board game. Get creative!
Another option to stay connected with friends and family is to have a remote movie night. Through the new Chrome extension Netflix Party, viewers can watch Netflix shows and movies on a server from their own device that is synced up with their friends. The service is complete with a chatroom, so friends can stay connected.
Just because schools are closed does not mean something new cannot still be learned. Many museums offer virtual tours for free that allow viewers to experience them without leaving the comfort of their own home, including the British Museum, the Guggenheim, and the National Gallery of Art.
Although technology provides a valuable source of communication during social distancing, there are plenty of alternatives to being glued to a screen for the entirety of the hiatus from school. While all in-person social interactions should be limited, students can still go outside, go for a walk, and stay active. A breath of fresh air is a great way to stay healthy and take a much-needed break from staying indoors.
Keep in mind, quarantine does not have to be a complete waste of time or a mere countdown until school starts up again. Take this opportunity to start a project or pick up a new skill. Now is the time to finally read that book a friend recommended or learn to cook an age-old family recipe. Try to finally finish a project that has been put off, like organizing the bedroom or going through old clothes to donate.
Long-term social distancing is unprecedented and uncomfortable for everyone. The best way to power through it is to stay occupied and find alternatives to normal daily life. Most importantly, remember that no matter how isolated this feels, we are all in it together.