33 Teen-Chosen Quarantine Reads: The Results of Our Special April Challenge

33 Teen-Chosen Quarantine Reads: The Results of Our Special April Challenge

Laura Arbona on The Quarantine Diaries

The article reminded me that I didn’t have to be perfect. That I could write/draw/create whatever I wanted without fear of judgment; that I didn’t have to be a “scaredy-cat.” Which is why I’ve started a quarantine diary, not necessarily to document the progress of the coronavirus, but for myself; just an antique looking journal, a black pen, and my thoughts.

Matalin Bloomfield on When a Ballerina Gets to Be Goofy

I take twenty-four hours of ballet a week, and in each of those classes, I apply every correction, trying to make my dancing as perfect as possible … Striving for perfection warrants progress, but it can also make dancers feel like they’ll never be good enough. Lovette allows herself to act like a real person while she’s onstage, and values the clumsy nature of her character more than the classical steps.

Mollie Brinker on How The Times Covered the First Earth Day, 50 Years Ago

Fifty years ago … no one protested Earth Day … You can see that in the paper from half-a-century ago, the universal support of the idea to protect the Earth. I, however, have friends who’ve argued with me about why we need such a pointless holiday. I hope in the future, Earth Day can look more like it did at the very beginning of the environmental movement.

Jessica C on “The Slur I Never Expected to Hear in 2020

When schools closed, I felt so relieved. I did not have to take the horrifying subway home, and I can just stay at my house. Staying home made me feel safer. However, I still see racist comments on social media platforms, especially on Tik Tok. I scroll and see an Asian person on my For You Page, and their content is usually very funny and nothing harmful. However, when I look at the comments and scroll really far down, I see slurs and racism directed toward them.

Mark Cameron on The Reclusive Food Celebrity Li Ziqi Is My Quarantine Queen

Her content is really relaxing, yet entertaining: the perfect thing to watch while in quarantine. She offers some kind of escapism in the videos she makes, which I think is part of why she’s so appealing. I told my parents about the news and they were quite surprised because they didn’t know Western audiences were aware of Li Ziqi’s online presence, but it is great to see her get the recognition she deserves.

Simone Cronier on Widow Walks Into Wall, Finds Hope

When the schools announced they were closing due to Covid-19, we all knew it was bound to happen. That didn’t stop the news from robbing my breath. It happened again when I found out I might never see certain friends, who are moving away, ever again. Or when I found out my grandma, who lives in another country, might not be able to visit us this summer. We’ve all lost something, but that’s all the more reason to be hopeful about our future, like Bette.

Mason Evans on “Procrastinate Much? Manage Your Emotions, Not Your Time.

My growing homework pile was beginning to swallow me whole, but I kept putting off this assignment and giving myself fake reasons to do something else. So naturally, the first article that piques my interest is one regarding procrastination. And as an experiment, before writing this response, I decided to follow the article’s directions to change my emotional state. And surprisingly, it worked to at least some success.

Adeline G on “College Campuses Must Reopen in the Fall. Here’s How We Do It,

Like Paxson, I am “cautiously optimistic” about schools reopening come fall. But, like she says, there are many necessary steps that must be implemented for colleges to reopen. I can only pray that these steps are taken because for me, the only thing worse than schools not reopening next year is having them reopen, only to close again.

Anagha Ghosh on “‘Instead of Coronavirus, the Hunger Will Kill Us.’ A Global Food Crisis Looms.

Why do the deaths now bother us more? In fact, what we are going through right now is temporary but the poor and hungry have gone through this trauma every single day … When I read the article, I found my answer right there. I realized that we never cared as much because it wasn’t ‘our’ problem it was ‘theirs’.

Helena on “Who Gets a Ventilator?

I cannot help feeling like the question itself has no correct answers. When considering each option discussed, each seems like an unacceptable choice. Despite these feelings, I do see the need for a set of fair guidelines, as any need to make such decisions on the spot would harm doctors and produce more unfair outcomes. I find it likely that if this decision were left up to doctors, many decisions would come down to personal biases such as socioeconomic status, religion, ethnicity, and countless others.

Cooper Hyldahl on Examining Tara Reade’s Sexual Assault Allegation Against Joe Biden

I love the reporters that wrote the article and have followed their work the entire election cycle, but I felt as though they were not honestly reporting the whole story, or at least skewing in the article in a way that made it favorable to Joe Biden. On multiple occasions, the article blatantly tried to dismiss Reade’s claims and even Reade herself.

Laine Kowalski on “Earth Day Message to Leaders: After Coronavirus, Rebuild Wisely

The author shares with us eye opening statistics that because of the pandemic, global greenhouse emissions will be reduced by 6 percent this year, but it still isn’t enough to reverse the damage of climate change. This is a wake-up call to us all.

Sara Kowalski on “‘Afraid to Be a Nurse’: Health Workers Under Attack

This article is important to me because the nurses should be treated right. They need to feel appreciated and loved for what they are doing everyday to make this virus go away. They are not asking for a lot, they are just asking us to take care of them.

Daniella Liang on My 4-Year-Old Thinks She’s a Sous Chef. I’m Trying to Remain Calm.

I really like cooking, and know all about disasters. It was the only article that I saw that didn’t have anything about Covid-19. However, I really like to try new things, and the article was just really funny. It showed two very different personalities working together and changing their perspectives.

Rachel Lonker on “‘Pacing and Praying’: Jailed Youths Seek Release as Virus Spreads

My father is a public defender, so this issue resonates with me in particular. Seeing it in The New York Times helps me understand how widespread and dangerous their confinement is, and how much of a difference his work makes. He represents Montgomery County juveniles and has been actively working to get them released since the beginning of the outbreak.

Emma McLaughlin on “Women May Finally Be Declared Equal

To me it’s not only ironic, but crazy that we still cannot pass an act that will make women equal to men. We have made many steps in creating equality for everyone but there are still steps to be made. I have learned to better educate myself so I can have a substantial role in getting these rights for women in future generations.

Madelyn Myerson on “What I Learned From Being Off My Anxiety Meds in a Pandemic

Hearing about people overcoming mental illness to do what they love will always be inspiring, and it’s something I definitely needed to read right now during quarantine when my mental health has been erratic at best.

Priya Patel on “Why Mars Needs Leap Days, Too

Ever since I was able to understand my National Geographic Solar System Guide, I felt an attraction for the cosmos … Putting my foot on Martian soil would be the highlight of my entire existence.

Wesley Peng on The Slur I Never Expected to Hear in 2020

Staying positive is already hard during these bleak times, but being Asian-American makes it ten times harder. This reminded me of a horrific event: The Asian-American church in my neighborhood was vandalized for the first time in decades. Even though no one was congregating, vandals ripped out wiring and cut pipes during a time of financial hardship for all.

… We are all petrified of contracting this disease, but why are people hurting others emotionally and physically when there is already so much pain in our country?

Sydney Pugh on “Searching For A Jesus Who Looks Like Me

In the U.S., the Jesus I most often see is the pale, robe-wearing, long and wavy brown-haired, Eurocentric man that has been ingrained in my head … I think recognizing more depictions of religious figures that aren’t drawn to look like the U.S’s majority may help to finally show that, as Dinorah Nieves states in the article perfectly, “It’s important for us to see melanin and sacredness as connected and not opposites.”

Kathleen S. on Their Met Gala, Their Way. You’re Invited.”

As I read this article I felt inspired. It showed young people who were interested in the same things I am, and how they used their creativity to become successful. This isn’t something I see a lot of, especially involving high fashion.

Weronika on “‘Heck Yeah, We’re Dancing’: It’s Diplo, Live From His Living Room

Many people are devastated because of these canceled events and I fully understand, considering my plans of attending Lollapalooza are uncertain. I love seeing these artists adapting to this current pandemic and making the best of it.

Grace Trimpey-Warhaftig on “Artists Are Hunkered Down, but Still Nurturing Their Inner Visions”

I often have felt unmotivated. I know there are things I could do or should do but instead, I sit in my room bored complaining looking at the endless pages of stupidity found on my Instagram or Tik Tok feed … After reading this article. I felt inspired to get out and paint. I decided to sit on my porch and look out and paint what I saw. I painted the multicolored flowers that are spread out in my garden. Then on a separate canvas, I looked up and painted the clouds. It calmed me down and felt good to be inspired.

Gracelynn Whitaker on What the Great Pandemic Novels Teach Us

We can let the past be our guide. Times of crisis incite times of blame. Plagues since Roman antiquity have had scapegoats. Christians, Jews, Ethiopians, Egyptians- Chinese. Blaming one religion or ethnicity does not get rid of the illness. We are on witch-hunts that will get us no closer to winning over Covid-19.