Quarantined at home: Finding ways to overcome challenges

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Credit: Jackie Cahaly

Walking dogs has become a popular stay at home activity. “One thing I am able to do now is [go] for a walk every day with my kids and the dog,” WHS english teacher Michelle Goodnow said.

Ellie Smith and Jacqueline Cahaly

Most people would probably be confused if, on March 12, you told them that would be their last day in school for the rest of year. All of a sudden, students, teachers and families have had to adapt to doing school, work, sports and everything else from home, all while being stuck in the same house as their family for three months.

“Some big changes I have had to make are mostly related to the way I spend my time,” freshman Hannah Gordon said. “I can sleep later [because] schoolwork takes less time than in school did, and I don’t have homework so I can spend afternoons doing other things.”

Before quarantine started, the majority of people had enough motivation to get their work done and finish out each day. This is usually because each day brings new excitement and new things to do. However, now at home, people have found that days blend together and all look the same.

“Some of my biggest challenges would be not being able to hang out with my friends as much, spring sports being canceled and not going to school,” freshman Emily Roberge said. “It gets boring when every day looks the same.”

One of the largest problems with online learning is the technological needs. Luckily, students at WHS have what they need to do most school-related tasks because of the MacBooks provided by the school. However, it is harder for younger students because most of them do not have their own laptops and need to share with their siblings or get a new one.

“The first thing we did was buy my 8-year-old son a Chromebook,” WMS english teacher Michelle Goodnow said. “Ordinarily, we would have waited until he was 10, but with all of us working on our computers all day long, he had to have his own.”

Although the schoolwork remains doable, many have had to stop participating in their regular activities due to social distancing and cancellations. Changes have been made activities people used to do so people can ensure safety while limiting the spread of the coronavirus.

“My club lacrosse team has been doing virtual HIIT workouts that we can complete in the mornings, three times a week,” Roberge said. “It has been working well. I feel like not only does it get me stronger than I was before, but it keeps me motivated to keep working hard.”

Due to quarantine, families have had to spend much more time together. Some are finding that spending everyday together leads to more irritation, therefore, sparking between family members.

“My relationship with my parents and siblings is mostly the same,” Gordon said. “But we all get annoyed much quicker than before we were quarantining together.”

Despite the many challenges we face in this uncertain time, some families feel quarantine has brought them closer. There is more time to spend together, which most families wouldn’t normally do before. Eating meals, going on walks and playing games together are some of the ways families are connecting.

“One thing I [can do] now is [go] for a walk every day with my kids and the dog,” Goodnow said. “I always took the dog for a daily walk, but now my kids come with me, and it is my favorite time of the day. I also love lunches at home with my kids and my husband, eating on the back porch.”