The impact of the novel coronavirus has forced many people to accept a “new normal”. For students, this includes distance learning from their homes. And for the adults, most have been relegated to working from home as well. Many employers as well as school boards have suggested that this may be the “new normal” people will need to deal with for some time. A significant number of schools and colleges have cancelled any in-person classes for the rest of the 2019-2020 school year, and many adults are unable to return to work yet because of restrictions still in place. How sustainable is this “new normal” really?

New normal for children

New normal for childrenIt’s not uncommon for college and university students to elect to take some of their classes online. But for younger children, this distance learning is an extreme change from what they were used to. The situation with schools and child care centers has remained fairly uncertain so far, and looks like it will be that way for some time to come. The lopsided impact of the coronavirus will also make schools’ responses different from region to region depending on how prevalent the virus continues to be.

The CDC has recently made is widely known that children may be under a unique risk if they catch CoViD-19. It is not widespread as of yet, but this already vulnerable group needs to be extra cautious if any coronavirus symptoms arise. The unique response some children have developed has been dubbed “multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children”(MIS-C). It seems to only appear in people under age 21. This reaction will need to be addressed with how parents deal with creating their children’s new normal. Being extra vigilant is paramount to keeping children safe. The more prevalent this syndrome becomes, the more it will affect what the new normal is for kids.

In addition to distance learning, children need to be closely protected since now anyone under 21 has a unique risk from CoViD-19. If children return to schools in the fall (which is looking less likely over time) then there will certainly be new sanitary procedures in place. But most will be stuck at distance learning or being home schooled for the foreseeable future.

New normal for adults

New normal for adults

Many states are in the process of opening back up, even though a considerable chunk of those states do not meet the White House’s recommended thresholds. It’s impossible to pretend that the pandemic is over and people are still very wary about going out of their houses. Many employees are still working from home if that’s an option for them, and their employers allow it because they’re concerned about their own and their employees’ safety. Adults are largely doing what they can to avoid doing unnecessary things that could put them at risk of exposure, including cancelling social outings and events.

Instead of physically going to events with friends, adults are having virtual get-togethers. They video chat and social and get some “facetime” with people they haven’t got to see since quarantine began.

The New Normal for both children and adults share many similarities. They are being quarantined to their homes, and fulfill their obligations there as well. Video chatting with anyone they need to speak to; friends, superiors, coworkers, teachers, tutors, etc. They are feeling the impact of needing to keep their distance when taking classes and getting work done. It’s uncertain how long this will continue to affect our society. The CDC keeps the public up to date on all new developments; so make sure you read up about anything new on their website or on the news.

Seiler Tucker