As most of us are aware by now, the Coronavirus spread has become a national issue, as most of us are hunkering down for a while. We are learning quickly that our luxuries aren’t going to help keep us safe if we do not practice due diligence. We need to confirm our “social distancing” to protect ourselves, and our loved ones. With this said, many families are forced to resort to continued education and homeschooling.

Speaking from experience, keeping a journal or journaling is a personally rewarding experience for dealing with crisis. My entire Master’s Project was grounded on this notion. Blogging and journaling is therapeutic. Does everyone agree? I doubt it! Most people wouldn’t understand the premise or complexities of how our minds process trauma. However, the idea of putting pen to paper for some can be scary. I’ve been told it can be “crippling” for those that aren’t familiar or comfortable with it.

It never felt unfamiliar to me. As a young student, I wrote often and read voraciously. The library was my refuge. It was quiet and safe. It was usually clean, and everything I needed to read in peace was readily available to me. It was also a place I could go that no one would question me about, and most of my friends didn’t care to join. I had learned early on to associate the nature of peace and quiet with reading and writing. It never occurred to me that I was using writing as my tool out of poverty and hopelessness.

I find myself faced with the reality that our students are dealing with making adjustments to a lifestyle they are unfamiliar with, and it will take a toll on them. As a member of the infamous Generation X, those of us unaffected or unimpressed by external factors, we were raised on using phones connected to the wall. We had the convenience of connecting with our outside cohorts, and the vehicle being America’s technological innovations. Still, we knew home was where this innovation was taking place. The information generation has that feeling of “home” but it has almost been replaced by Facebook profiles, ‘The Gram’, and Snapping. So, I say, let’s meet our students where they are, and help them find their trajectory.

I am including a link here for a neat activity to get our students out of their funk. It serves a few purposes. The activity provides students with self-awareness, as they will be creating this journal according to their likes and/or dislikes. They will also employ forethought and organization skills. They will structure their journal while developing a better sense of author ownership, and this will allow them an opportunity to view their writing through a new lens. The activity helps students become comfortable with utilizing writing as a way to contain feelings of fear or anxiety due to lack of control.

A journal helps our students find some control in an environment where their perceived perspective of losing it overwhelms them. Happy journaling all!