The Ingenuity of Tech Breaks

Students finding ways to be creative and stay engaged outside of their devices

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Senior

Junior Amelia Senior has found ways to avoid too much screen time like practicing piano

Hanging out with friends represents a big portion of what teens do when they  are not on devices, so now that that option is gone, sheltering in place seems even more boring. 

Though screen time is an easy way to stay occupied, some students have found ways to balance that out with things that they might not be doing outside of a lockdown. 

Since the lock down, senior Hannah Yulish  has found herself playing board games with her family.

“I normally don’t use screens that much because I have things to do after school. I’d probably be hanging out with friends, walking my dog, and babysitting my cousins a lot,” said Yulish. 

For those who don’t like to sit still for too long, there are still plenty of exercises you can do while maintaining social distance. At-home exercises are an option for people who prefer not to go outside. If that’s you, take a page from junior Ben Frydman’s book because he’s getting creative. 

“I’ve been focusing on core workouts,” said Frydman. “I’ve been doing push ups where, after each one, I do a side plank.” 

I tried watching anime and cross stitch at the same time, but it didn’t work”

— Amelia Senior

It’s becoming clear that students have to think outside of the box to stay away from tech, and that doesn’t just apply to workouts. For junior Amelia Senior, getting creative means making colorful fabric worms using a technique called cross stitching, a form of stitching in which an X-shaped stitch is made on an even fabric.

“I tried watching anime and cross stitch at the same time, but it didn’t work,” said Senior. While she does get instructions from her teacher online, Senior also enjoys playing the piano.

Coming up with ways to occupy ourselves outside of screen time is important to maintain creativity. According to Marilyn Price-Mitchell of Psychology Today, even the moderate adolescent tech users surveyed were 60-78% less likely to be calm, creative, or task-oriented if they spent more than 4 hours on tech daily. 

Even so, not being on technology is harder than ever with remote school work.Some students have had their free time flooded with school work, especially because of the adjustments they have to make to the new work schedule. 

“I usually spend too much time on essays after school work is done,” said Frydman. Since things like essays and video lessons are on technology, it seems almost more unavoidable. This is an obstacle many teens will have to work through. 

At the end of the day, it is all a matter of balance. During the lockdown, exceptions to screen time rules can be made. We’d all be going crazy otherwise. Even creative teens like Senior have to admit that it is hard not to. “I draw on apps, or do Tiktoks. When editing them, it’s really cool to finally finish.