Okay, take a deep breath. Today we're going to talk about the much dreaded recent global issue: the COVID-19 pandemic. Most of us have been finding ourselves in quarantine in order to practice social distancing. Events are postponed or canceled. Cafes and restaurants are shut to help people avoid going out in public. Many kids around the world have been forced to stay home from school, and parents start remote working from home as well. We're all in this together.
If the thought of yourself, your children, or your students being quarantined for days—or weeks—freaks you out, you are not alone! Where should you channel such high energy when nobody is allowed to leave the house, anyway?
Fret not, we have a quarantine-friendly list to kill any students' boredom up our list. Whether it's you, your family, or your students – we're going to make sure everyone keeps learning new things everyday. Let's dive in!
- Read, read, read!
Books might seem like an obvious solution, and that's because it is! With an abundance of time at home now, it's really the right time to take out all those untouched books in your shelves.
But if you're not particularly impressed with the idea of reading, there are ways to make it more interesting. Teachers can set up a reading challenge or bingo for students to complete at home. If you're a parent with younger children, you can try reading together aloud. Just pick a book you both enjoy, and let your imagination run!
Some books have even more interactive elements best enjoyed together. For example, Assemblr's printable AR Books allow you to immerse yourself in beautiful graphics that pop up when the pages are scanned using smartphone. All members of the family can take part in unfolding the fun!
Alternatively, if you ran out of books to read, you can download free eBooks from many online libraries out there. Project Gutenberg, for example, has over 60,000 free eBooks that include a children’s literature category where kids can download or read online classics like “Little Women” and “Peter Pan.” Meanwhile, Raz-Kids.com provides hundreds of interactive eBooks for kids from kindergarten to Grade 5 and has a 14-day free trial.
2. Take online courses
Staying off screen in times of quarantine might be challenging, but you don't always have to do it! There are plenty of free online learning resources aside from eBooks that everyone of all ages can enjoy. Khan Academy is a nonprofit that offers free courses for all levels from children to adults, and subjects from early math and grammar to engineering to art history. Scholastics.ca also has read aloud video books, Learn at Home resources for parents and other activities.
If you want to be a little more... independent, some mobile applications offer modules and educational contents you can explore alone or show to your kids. Assemblr, for example, provides dozens of 3D educational models that can be viewed virtually in Augmented Reality. Dig in.
3. Go artsy
Keep your mind and hands busy by diving into a DIY project. Whether you want to learn how to crochet, bake some cookies, or make origami, the Internet offers a wealth of free tutorials for almost everything imaginable. This even includes how to make your own hand sanitizer! And a lot of them can be enjoyed with the rest of people in your house.
This is also a good opportunity for teachers to give an assignment students will actually love. When in doubt, or in case it's getting harder to leave house to get some supplies... a piece of paper and a box of crayons will suffice. All you need is some fresh ideas in mind!
4. Make videos or journals
If getting handsy is not your thing, you can encourage your children or students to document or write a piece about what they have done during quarantine. Whether they've just read a book,watched a movie, or learned to do something, challenge your kids to write an opinion piece or record a video about it. For the older ones, even the whole quarantine can be a great topic! Afterall, this Coronavirus pandemic is a global event you don't come across everyday.
5. Build a virtual project
Prefer to keep things on-screen? You can still get creative with image editing and content-creation platforms, which you can enjoy on your PC and mobile devices! For example, Assemblr allows people of all ages, from kids to adults, to create your own Augmented Reality contents. With thousands of premade objects you can arrange to your liking, it's quite like playing Lego, but in your phone. And you can view it as if it's placed in the real world easily using the AR technology. Assemblr is available to download via App Store and Play Store for free.
Remember, amidst the uncertainty surrounding this pandemic, everything is temporary. Might as well be kind to yourself and spent the coming days and weeks with activities that bring joy to you as well as your home. Get creative, stay occupied, and don't forget to have fun!
Assemblr is a platform for making 3D and Augmented Reality via smartphones. So far, Assemblr has been featured by Play Store and App Store with 1.5 million downloads, 350 thousand users and almost 1 million creations. To download Assemblr, click here.