School shutdown last week leads to more free time for students

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Educational facilities were shut down last Sunday when New York City mayor Bill de Blasio announced that all schools would be closed until April 20th to prevent the spread of the coronavirus. Now that everyone is encouraged to stay home, students have much more free time and have utilized this time in various ways. 

Many turned to social media and video streaming services to pass the time. Junior Hans Li made “more [connections] via social media.” Similarly, freshman Raine Wu used her free time “scrolling on TikTok.” Senior Deborah Molina spent her time “watching Netflix,” an activity common among high school students. 

Others utilized this time to develop new skills, such as senior Ashley Facey. Ashley explained, “[I learned how to] cook, do my own hair, and play guitar.” Likewise, sophomore Ngozi Anya “learned so many TikTok dances in the span of two days.” 

On the opposite side of the spectrum, students have been catching up on past activities they couldn’t do while in school. Raine spent “time with [her] family.” Sophomore Fern Tandrianto added, “I’ve been…watching episodes of reality TV and anime I’ve been missing.” 

Though Ngozi misses her friends, she added, “I’ve been catching up on sleep that I’ve been missing out when I was still going to school.” 

Ultimately, the closure of schools has allowed students to explore new activities and enjoy their freedom at home. Hans concluded, “It’s a great time also for us to self reflect and improve each and every one of ourselves.”