I had this really great idea, that I wanted to find out what the young people were thinking and feeling about all this.

So I went to my perfectly articulate and literate boys to see what they could offer and they rolled their eyes at another mad mother interlude and flatly refused.  Interestingly, I sent my questions out to boys and girls but only three girls have come through with answers….what every English Teacher (and I was one once) knows.

But if you have a child, sitting bored at home, I’d love to hear from them so please just give them the questions I asked below and email me their answers and then I’ll share them out.

There is so much in here that schools can learn.  Thank you Lucia, Charlotte and Elizabeth for taking them time and using your skills.

Lucia in Surrey aged 14

  1. Where are you?

Currently I am Self Quarantining with my family in our home in Surrey

  1. How is everyone in your family?

Everyone in my family so far are all seeming to be coping very well with the current situation, we are trying to keep a good and organised schedule to keep our days as normal as they would be on a normal day.

  1. How do you feel about all this?

Personally, I am quite calm at the moment, but things could very change! It is quite nerve wracking now that we have got important people to our country who are now dealing with coping with the virus. I am sticking to all of the precautions that have been put in place to keep myself safe.

  1. How has your daily life changed?

My daily life changed quite greatly, I no longer am allowed to go to school and have to do all my work at home. This means I don’t wake up at 6:30 every morning and leave the house at 7:40 and get home by 3:30. I am sitting at my desk more frequently and dealing with trying not to get distracted by things other than my schoolwork.

  1. What do you enjoy about the change?

I find myself being more motivated to get things done because I no longer have a teacher telling my classes to constantly get on with the work or to be quiet. I also enjoy having to work certain things out for myself other than being given it on a worksheet. It also gives me a chance to structure my day in the way I feel I will work best, and I can now go at my own speed of working whilst keeping up with all the deadlines.

  1. What do you miss?

My Friends! Although it is great to spend extra time with my family, I also miss seeing my friends every day and laughing together about our inside jokes and complaining about things my family might not understand. I also miss going to dance and stagecoach each week! We have been working on a show that was meant to be performed tomorrow (29/03/2020) which sadly isn’t going ahead anymore. Every Friday, I love going to my dance class which has also stopped so I miss training even though sometimes I can take it for granted! One more thing I miss is my club. I run a small performing arts club at school on a lunch time and I miss seeing the smiles on everyone’s faces when we do a perfect run through.

  1. What do you find especially hard?

I find structuring my time well difficult because we no longer have to stick to an hour to a lesson so finding a way to deal with time is fairly challenging.

  1. What are you worried about?

I am worried that due to the online school, I will not get the right amount of attention from my teachers when I need help because I can’t speak to them face to face.

  1. What are you hopeful about?

I am hopeful that once everyone starts to stay inside, soon enough we’ll be able to outside and see all our friends and family again and see people that we don’t usually see.

  1. What are you doing/thinking to help you cope?

To cope, I am staying in contact with as many people as I can and as well as doing my schoolwork making sure I am as stress free as possible, so I don’t become too overwhelmed

  1. Is there any advice you’d give to other younger people?

Make sure you do as much of what you enjoy as you can whilst we are at home! I do this and it keeps me positive. Stay inside when you can and only go out when necessary, we need to be as safe as possible so that we are able to go back to a normal lifestyle.

Charlotte in York aged 16

  1.       Where are you? and How old are you?

I am 16 years old and am currently living in the south of York. 

  1.       How is everyone in your family?

We’re all doing well and are trying to make the best out of quarantine. I think, despite the global pandemic, we’re all kind of enjoying having a little time off school and being all together. We often call and face-time my grandparents and catch up which is a lovely thing to do. Recently we have been spending a lot more time playing board games and playing with the dog which, during school time, we wouldn’t normally do as we’re all so busy.

  1.       How do you feel about all this?

I am enjoying spending more time on my school work however it is sometimes a little hard to stay concentrated with my family around-especially the dog! In spite of this I am making the most of our ‘one run a day rule’ which, surprisingly to me, really does help mentally as well and physically. I think it’s important to always have something to do and not always end up watching Netflix (even though it’s relaxing) which is why I am setting myself a list of books I would like to read over the next 2 or 3 weeks (or however long this will be). 

However, I am obviously very worried. The fact that we don’t know how long this will go on for does stress me out a little bit. I was supposed to do some exams but since schools closed, I don’t know when it will be rescheduled for. I am also supposed to have mocks in June and I don’t know whether they will happen and whether I should revise properly or not. I think the fact that all these figures come in on the news of cases and deaths from coronavirus is quite overwhelming. Sometimes I don’t know what my priority should be-school work or the global pandemic that is just outside my door. 

  1.       How has your daily life changed?

For this last week where we are doing online lessons my daily life hasn’t changed too much. I still follow my timetable and do all my work but I’m not with my friends and teachers which makes it a lot harder. However it does give me more independence so I do feel a bit grown up sometimes and it’s nice to have structure to my day. It is nice that after a morning of online lessons I can have lunch with the rest of my family who have all been working from home as well. 

  1.       What do you enjoy about the change?

In particular I love spending much more time with my family. It’s also really nice to take my time over my school work and other things that I wouldn’t normally have much time to do. For example, my room is very tidy :). Although this probably shouldn’t be my attitude in year 12, It’s really nice to just not be at school. I love taking my time, especially over my A-level textiles work!

  1.       What do you miss?

I really miss seeing all my friends and doing normal things with them like shopping in town and going to the cinema. Although I message and face-time them, it’s not the same. I also really miss seeing all my aunties, uncles and grandparents. At the moment, 5 days into lockdown, I’m not missing school but I’m sure I will eventually. I think I miss the convenience of the simple things like going to the shops or going for some food with my friends. I also miss going to work seeing all my friends from work as now all restaurants have closed down and there’s a national lockdown, I’m not going to see them for…well…who knows?

Although it might seem a little irrelevant in the whole grand scheme of things, I was planning to go and see Harry Styles in concert next month but that has been postponed until next year as well as a Camila Cabello concert in June which has also been postponed! I feel like everything is just on hold now until further notice which is annoying as I can’t plan ahead. 

  1.       What do you find especially hard?

I think the hardest thing so far was Mother’s Day. We went over to see my Grandparents but my sister and I had to stay in the car. We waved to them through the window but we could even go and hug them. Although we face-timed them later, it was still very hard not being able to do such a simple, everyday act of giving someone a hug. 

  1.       What are you worried about?

I’m worried because I don’t know how long this will go on for. Through nobody’s fault we’re being given mixed messages. For example, we could go back to school just after the Easter holidays but it could also be in September. Normally I can plan my afternoon/day/week with things that I know are going to happen but now I don’t know. I’m worried about my Grandparents but also the other elderly people that I know. 

  1.       What are you hopeful about?

I’m hoping that this will blow over soon and that we will find a cure ASAP. I hope we can get back to school in June/July time and by summer this will all go back to normal so we can enjoy our summer holidays. I hope that none of my family and friends get hurt by this disease and that we will have it under control so we know how to avoid it. 

  1.   What are you doing/thinking which is helping you cope?

I’m trying to stay calm and carry on with what I would be doing pre-coronavirus. So, I’m just getting on with my school work and keeping myself occupied. I’m face-timing my friends and family to catch up with everyone  which really reassures me that everyone and everything will be alright. I’m trying not to take anything for granted.

  1.   Is there any advice you would give other young people?

Keep yourself busy with activities, work etc…Now is a good time to catch up on some work! Try to get some kind of structure to your day so, at the end of it, you feel as if you have accomplished something. Enjoy spending time with your close family and keep in contact with your friends and family as it’s important for them as well as you. Keep calm and stress free, It will be over soon!

Elizabeth from York aged 13

  1. Where are you? and How old are you? 

I live south of York in a small village, I am 13 years old. 

  1. How is everyone in your family?

My parents are fine but they are worried about my grandparents.

  1. How do you feel about all this?

I am quite calm about all of this but I am worried about my grandparents 

  1. How has your daily life changed?

I usually go to school from 7:30 am to 7:30 pm and now I can get out of bed at five to nine and get to school on time because we use our school VLE.

  1. What do you enjoy about the change?

That I don’t have to get out of bed so early.

  1. What do you miss?

Going shopping with my sister in York.

  1. What do you find especially hard?

I find going to lessons hard because we can only email and once a week we have a google meet.

  1. What are you worried about?

I am worried about my grandparents. 

  1. What are you hopeful about?

I am hoping I won’t have to do our end of year tests

  1. What are you doing/thinking which is helping you cope?

What is the worst case scenario for me is I get it and I have a bad flu. But I am worried about if my grandparents get it. 

  1. Is there any advice you would give other young people?

Stay calm and don’t stress.

Sage advice and interesting thoughts on learning and home.

Thank you again.

(Thank you Jo Ebrey for your lovely photo)

Free Online Well-being videos, podcasts and lives to help you with their weird times.

  • Join me live on zoom for meditations and well being sessions, dates, times and login details here.
  • If you missed the lives, never fear for the recordings are on YouTube or as podcasts, whichever you prefer  here

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