Spring Break for Teens during Covid-19
Written by Jerri Gapastione
Did this quarantine really just start around two weeks ago? Feels like it’s been a LOT longer. Guess that’s what happens when we’re homebound 24/7, even if it is with the ones we love. Hope your family has fared well and is gearing up for one of the most unusual spring breaks ever.
Teens are interesting – sweet, thoughtful, caring…hurtful, bored and selfish – sometimes a mixture of all of those within a few minutes. Now we’re facing a week with them when they have NOTHING to do and NOWHERE to go… Hopefully, we can find some interesting things to do to help all of us pass the time and make some great memories.
As we know, time flies, and before we know it our teen will be an adult and off on their own, so let’s look at this time together as a gift. Ecclesiastes 3:1-8 has a lot to say about time. Perhaps it can serve as a guide for the next week. My ideas for bringing the passage
to life are below the bolded verse.
v1 There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens
Activity: Create a loose schedule for your days – devote time before & after lunch to get outside-rain or shine, plan movie nights and watch something atypical: documentaries, mysteries, movies from your youth and munch on fun treats like at the theater. Set aside time to try an online workout a few times during the week, schedule time to hone a creative talent, such as an online drawing tutorial or musical instruction.
v2 a time to be born and a time to die,
Activity: And in between those two, we need to eat, so teach your kids to make a family recipe, try new recipes, have a cooking contest to see who can make the best cookie or have an Iron Chef competition.
a time to plant and a time to uproot,
Activity: (PLANT) Plan your summer garden of vegetables or flowers, research new color combinations or plant varieties, or (UPROOT) have your kids plan the next family vacation [or find an idyllic place to live if you were to move] and then go there virtually with Google Earth, visit a virtual museum exhibit, etc.
v3 a time to kill and a time to heal,
Activity: Heal relationships with those you haven’t seen in a while by writing a letter and mailing it or calling someone on the phone, or write a letter to thank a first responder/medical professional/teacher/grocery store clerk who is working during this unprecedented time.
a time to tear down and a time to build,
Activity: Family build time – make a house of cards, a gingerbread summer vacation home out of graham crackers, a blanket fort and tell scary stories.
v4 a time to weep and a time to laugh,
Activity: Harness screen time – have everyone be on the lookout for a humorous video clip that can be shared with the family during a meal or check out Dude Perfect online and try to create some of your own incredible feats.
a time to mourn and a time to dance,
Activity: Check out TikTok or Lets Dance for dance ideas and then practice the moves with your family – it may not be in your comfort zone, but it will provide family memories.
v5 a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them,
Activity: Decorate stones [found on nature walks?] and deliver them to a neighbor or friend to give them a smile.
a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing,
Activity: ‘Embrace’ those who are walking down your street by chalking the sidewalk with sweet messages or pictures – do every 4th square and see if your family can cover the entire block.
v6 a time to search and a time to give up,
Activity: Plan a family scavenger hunt, create clues for inside or outside your house and have a celebration at the finale.
a time to keep and a time to throw away,
Activity: Organize closets/rooms and donate things that ‘don’t bring you joy.’ Call for a pick-up of your giveaways or drop them at Goodwill, which is open for donations.
7 a time to tear and a time to mend,
Activity: Mend your home by tackling a project – find a YouTube video to walk you through fixing some minor repair you have put off or search through Pinterest for an idea of something to make for your home or to give to someone.
a time to be silent and a time to speak,
Activity: Definitely devote time apart from those you are quarantined with – an hour [or more] a day of quiet time – everyone in their room/space – to read, nap, pray, chill,…will be rejuvenating.
8 a time to love and a time to hate,
Activity: Share with your children all of the unconventional reasons you love them; together, look through old pictures for inspiration of their goofy lovable qualities through the years – recreate poses from old photos.
a time for war and a time for peace.
Activity: Not many of us have read War and Peace, but we can read or listen to books together or apart and share what we’ve heard. Libraries have online tools for listening to books – pick one and listen together while doing a puzzle or search favorite authors to see if any are reading their books, or excerpts, aloud during this time, or try a free online class.
Teens are social creatures who enjoy hanging with friends, so this time may be especially hard for them. Even if there are unpleasant moments over this and future weeks of quarantine, I hope we all come out of this closer than ever, or, at least, with a lot of good family memories. May time be on your side – for family fun and memory-making.
VIRTUAL WAYS TO HAVE FUN
- San Diego Zoo: https://kids.sandiegozoo.org/
- Yellowstone National Park: https://www.nps.gov/yell/learn/photosmultimedia/virtualtours.htm
- Mars: https://accessmars.withgoogle.com/
- Great Wall of China: https://www.thechinaguide.com/destination/great-wall-of-china
- Appalachian Trail: https://www.nps.gov/appa/learn/photosmultimedia/virtualtour.htm
- National Parks Virtual Tours: https://www.nps.gov/search/?affiliate=nps&query=trail%20virtual%20tours&fbclid=IwAR37uxTyHzMSXH2AkZNdmfHbrciDZ7w_C17IdHv02eZV1k0I3skr9jjJzCY
- San Diego Zoo Live Cameras: https://zoo.sandiegozoo.org/live-cams
- Monterey Bay Aquarium: https://www.montereybayaquarium.org/animals/live-cams
- Panda Cam: https://zooatlanta.org/panda-cam/
- Houston Zoo: https://www.houstonzoo.org/explore/webcams/
- Georgia Aquarium: https://www.georgiaaquarium.org/webcam/beluga-whale-webcam/
- British Museum, London: https://britishmuseum.withgoogle.com/
- Guggenheim Museum, NY: https://artsandculture.google.com/streetview/solomon-r-guggenheim-museum-interior-streetview/jAHfbv3JGM2KaQ?hl=en&sv_lng=-73.95902634325634&sv_lat=40.78285751667664&sv_h=30.75703204567916&sv_p=0.06928383072430222&sv_pid=MfnUmHRyOSzMtY3vtYU05g&sv_z=0.9645743015259166
- National Gallery of Art, Washington DC: https://artsandculture.google.com/partner/national-gallery-of-art-washington-dc?hl=en
- Musee d’Orsay, Paris: https://artsandculture.google.com/partner/musee-dorsay-paris?hl=en
- National Mueum of Modern and Contemporary Art, Seoul: https://artsandculture.google.com/partner/national-museum-of-modern-and-contemporary-art-korea?hl=en
- Pergamon Museum, Berlin: https://artsandculture.google.com/entity/pergamon/m05tcm?hl=en
- Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam: https://artsandculture.google.com/streetview/rijksmuseum/iwH5aYGoPwSf7g?hl=en&sv_lng=4.885283712508563&sv_lat=52.35984312584405&sv_h=311.1699875145569&sv_p=-5.924133903625474&sv_pid=fOVcUXQW2wpRf33iUmxEfg&sv_z=1
- Van Gogh Museum, Amsterdam: https://artsandculture.google.com/partner/van-gogh-museum?hl=en
- The J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles: https://artsandculture.google.com/partner/the-j-paul-getty-museum?hl=en
- Uffizi Gallery, Florence: https://artsandculture.google.com/partner/uffizi-gallery?hl=en
- MSAP, Sao Paulo: https://artsandculture.google.com/partner/masp?hl=en
- Open Heritage Sites from Around the world: https://artsandculture.google.com/project/openheritage
- Blarney Castle and Gardens: https://www.blarneycastle.ie/pages/map-and-virtual-tour
- Musicals you can watch at home: https://www.playbill.com/article/15-broadway-plays-and-musicals-you-can-watch-on-stage-from-home
- Ballet Nova Center: https://www.facebook.com/watch/BalletNovaCenterForDance/
(Only do exercises according to your ability level.)
Bodyweight exercises: Pushups, sit-ups, squats, jumping jacks, mountain climbers, burpees.
Just Dance 3: https://youtu.be/BhYvFMq7Xaw
- Free Yoga Programs: https://www.doyogawithme.com/
- Guided Imagery: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t1rRo6cgM_E&t=143s
- Yoga/Meditation Link 1: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qcdbCphVa1g
- Yoga/Meditation Link 2: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y70O2vEP1FE
- How to Meditate: https://www.nytimes.com/guides/well/how-to-meditate
- Meditation for Anxiety: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4pLUleLdwY4
Google Play or Apple apps:
- Mindfulness coach
- Free Online Courses
- Free Code Camp – https://www.freecodecamp.org/news/ivy-league-free-online-courses-a0d7ae675869/?fbclid=IwAR2jMOU2hExVYRvb0OlApN63ygv8svDkcjed6-bU5NmOM88BY2k7rUms1hg
- Coursera – https://www.coursera.org/courses?query=free
- The Great Course (one-month free trial) https://www.thegreatcoursesplus.com/lp/t1/freemo?source_id=FREEMO&utm_source=Social_Media&utm_medium=Facebook&utm_campaign=1000614&fbclid=IwAR3iebSRuHrjP-eiK4QX0YeiVXUdfxZCMmJR-HAVUXtHNuqRD8NPSC4debA