Ways to stay occupied while social distancing

Media Credit: Arielle Bader | Senior Photo Editor

If you need a break from your living space, head to one of the state or national parks that are still open in most of the country.

Malls, bars and theme parks have closed across the country because of COVID-19, but the rest of the semester can still be fun from your hometown. From binging a Netflix show, taking a tour of a virtual museum to spending time alone in the outdoors, here are some ways to enjoy time to yourself while practicing social distancing.

Netflix binges

‘Criminal Minds’

Now is the time to finally start binging a show with more than 10 seasons. While you could watch other popular shows like “Supernatural” or “Grey’s Anatomy,” a personal favorite that I’ve binged one too many times is “Criminal Minds.” The show follows the FBI’s behavioral analysis unit taking down the country’s most dangerous killers. Three hundred and nineteen episodes are packed into 15 seasons – 12 of which are on Netflix – and every episode keeps you on edge.


If you don’t want to invest in one single show for the rest of the semester, “Lucifer” is a hilarious drama with only four seasons so far. The show depicts the devil who grows bored of his life in Hell and ironically decides to move to the City of Angels, Los Angeles. He becomes a civilian consultant for the Los Angeles Police Department and forms a relationship with a homicide detective.

‘The 100’

For sci-fi and dystopian future-lovers, “The 100” is worth a watch. When a nuclear armageddon destroys the planet, the remaining population is forced to move into space. Decades later when their new habitat is at risk of running out of oxygen, 100 teenage prisoners are sent down to test if the planet is habitable. Once the teenagers are free, they realize the planet became more dangerous.

‘La Casa de Papel’ (Money Heist)

“La Casa de Papel” is one of the few shows that has you rooting for the robbers and not the police. The show is about a criminal mastermind who goes by the name “the professor” and bands together an eight-person team responsible for holding up the Royal Mint of Spain. The show was filmed in Spanish, but you can watch it with English subtitles or with English voice overs. If you like shows with complex characters, girl power and plot twists, this show will not disappoint.

‘The Politician’

“The Politician” is a quick binge for political science majors. It’s a show about high schooler Payton Hobart who dreams about becoming the U.S. president. In order to reach his goal, Hobart needs to make it through the crazy political world that is his high school’s presidential race. “The Politician” is a dark comedy that takes all the drama of politics and condenses it into a high school setting.

Virtual museums

While cheap plane tickets are tempting, you can still take a trip around the world without leaving your house by taking advantage of museums’ virtual exhibits.

Visit Amsterdam’s famous Van Gogh Museum, including the largest collection of Van Gogh’s artwork from his post-impressionism era to his modern art. When you click on the image, you can read a small synopsis of the piece. If you want to learn more about Van Gogh himself, there’s two virtual exhibits about what books he read and his love life.

You can also visit the Louvre in Paris from the comfort of your home. One of the museum’s exhibits is a collection on “Egyptian Antiquities” from the Pharaonic period. The Louvre’s website offers you an interactive tour where you can scroll through the museum like you are exploring Google maps. Stay in your pajamas and experience some of the most famous museums at your computer screen.

Time outdoors

Social distancing does not mean you have to spend all your time indoors. If you have a car, take a drive around your town blasting your favorite music. Take your dog for a walk around the neighborhood or take a day trip into the mountains and go on a hike. If you love driving the distance to a national or state park, most are staying open so people can get some fresh air.

Staying active

Whether you’re looking to practice yoga and meditation or high intensity workouts, you’ll no longer need a gym to practice your favorite workouts. If you’re planning on staying home, many gyms and trainers are offering free live-streamed and recorded workouts for you to do from your room.

Lululemon is livestreaming yoga workouts every Tuesday and meditations every Thursday on its Instagram’s IGTV. On YouTube, Orangetheory Fitness offers 30 minute videos of coaches guiding you through high intensity workouts without the need for any special equipment. 305 Fitness livestreams dance-cardio workouts at noon and 6 p.m. EST every day. The studio’s workouts are available on 305 Fitness’s YouTube channel if you can’t tune in on time.

Staying creative

Pick up activities you might not have the time to do with a busy college schedule, like creative writing and other forms of art.

If you have writer’s block, try one of these 365 prompts for inspiration. If you’re more into painting, Hulu is offering a painting show featuring Bob Ross’ tutorials.

Learn the dance choreography from your favorite movie musical or create your own dance to your favorite song. You can also learn a new language at your own pace with Duolingo or pick up a new instrument. If you have a piano in your house, the YouTube channel HDpiano offers tutorials to popular songs that are easy to understand.

The Hatchet has disabled comments on our website. Learn more.