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Coronavirus keeping you at home? Here’s what to do.

Staying home can feel isolating. (Charissa Howard/YJI)

Lower Merion, Pennsylvania, U.S.A. – As more and more schools around the United States are transitioning to online lessons or just canceling classes due to the growing threat of the coronavirus, many students suddenly find themselves with very little to do during the day.

In addition, encouragement from national and state governments to engage in social distancing can be frustrating to people – like me – who enjoy spending most of their time with friends.

Here are a few ideas for what to at home, after online school of course:

Stay connected. Even though you can’t see your friends and extended family in person, that doesn’t mean that you can’t FaceTime, text, or call them.

I’m an extrovert, so I’ve definitely struggled with the quarantine, but I try to FaceTime at least two friends a day, which makes this time much more bearable.

Stay active. The break from school shouldn’t be a break from exercise, too. Try going on a jog or a walk around the block to clear your head after being in the house for a while.

There are apps like 7 Minute Workout or Nike Training that provide workouts that are quick and easy to complete at home. Remember to stay hydrated, too!

Try something new. All this time stuck at home is a great opportunity to try new things. Give yourself a new hobby. My mom has been really into baking lately. My sister and I have decided to learn to knit.

The author, Charissa Howard, recommends picking up a good book. (YJI photo)

Or try something that you’ve always wanted to try, but have never gotten around to doing. We definitely have the time for it now.

Find a good author or binge a TV series. Now is the perfect time to start that Netflix show that all of your friends have been telling you to watch. It’s also a great time to start reading!
Independent reading improves focus and builds vocabulary, both good lifelong skills. Pick a book that actually seems interesting.

Get creative on social media. Take an artsy photoshoot for Instagram, make your friends laugh on your Snapchat private story, or try to get your TikTok on the For You Page.

Keep a journal. We are living in a crazy time right now. Record some of your thoughts about what’s happening in the world so that you can look back on this crazy year.

Beyond journaling, talking to someone about the heaviness of this moment can be really helpful.

Take a virtual tour. Many museums, like the Tate Modern in London, the Louvre in Paris, and the J. Paul Getty Museum in Los Angeles are offering free tours online because of covid-19.

Other adventures can be had online as well. The National Park Service is offering virtual walks through some stunning terrains, such as the Alaskan Glaciers, and other organizations are offering a variety of adventures. I’m going to be sure to try a virtual dive with the National Marine Sanctuaries.

However you decide to spend your time, take advantage of the break that we have, and keep yourself healthy.

Charissa Howard is a Junior Reporter with Youth Journalism International.

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