It’s been tough for many students and their families during quarantine, whether that’s because online learning has been difficult, they have been impacted by Covid-19 in some way, or simply because they are bored. Culture is prevalent in all of our lives and at a time like this, it could bring us together and keep us sane. Although there are many cultures that surround us, not everyone feels a sense of community and connectedness to theirs, so I have asked a few students from our school how they have been utilizing the resources they have to educate themselves on different cultures around the world.
The first student that I spoke with was Emelyn Cook, a sophomore at Northwest. This is what she had to say, “During quarantine, I have been educating myself on other cultures through my schoolwork. I have been reading articles from Latin America and reading a book called Homegoing, which details the Ashanti Empire in Africa. I feel that especially in times like these (with a global pandemic) it’s important to learn about other parts of the world, their culture, and how it’s impacted them – throughout the pandemic especially. I do think everyone should educate themselves on other cultures whenever they can.” Emelyn is not alone in students who have been learning about other cultures through school at the moment, the book mentioned is one the entire 10th grade is reading, and it provides a great opportunity to look at life in West Africa through the lenses of different people.
The second student that I interviewed was Charlotte Colee who a freshman. Just like Emelyn, Charlotte has also been active when it comes to familiarizing herself with different cultures. When asked about what she has been doing she said this, “I have just seen articles and the news talk a lot about different cultures during Covid.” So not only is school a great way to find out about various parts of the world, but certain news channels are also a great source of information (sorry not you Fox News). I followed up, asking, “How do you think that this has affected you or changed your outlook on life.” Charlotte responded, “I think exploring another culture has improved my mindset and made me more appreciative.”
And finally, I spoke with Owen Devore who is a senior, and he had a different response. Although Owen has not been necessarily engaging with different cultures, he has been diving into his own community. When asked what he has been doing, Owen said, “I recognize that I may not be exploring other cultures as much as I would like, but this quarantine has given me a chance to do things like cook foods with my brother that is significant to our own family.”
So even though not everyone has been doing the same things to interact with different parts of the world, there are many ways to stay in touch with yours or someone else’s culture, and with all this time on your hands, you should definitely give it a try.