Canadian children are done with school from home, fear falling behind, and miss their friends

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More than half of children 10-17 years old say what they miss most during the shutdown are their friends

by Angus Reid Institute – Canada’s children have held a unique position in the COVID-19 outbreak. While kids are statistically the lowest risk population, they have also been especially vulnerable to the effects of the pandemic’s resulting shutdown.

Kept home from school, trying to learn online, and worried about the financial and health risks to their parents, children have been anything but buffered from the realities of the last two months.

Are the kids alright?

A new study from the non-profit Angus Reid Institute canvassed children aged 10 to 17 across the country about their thoughts, expectations, and concerns about these unprecedented times.

The most common word they use to describe how they’ve been feeling recently is “bored”, chosen by 71 per cent. Significant segments (41%) also say they feel “normal”. Older kids are twice as likely as younger ones to say they feel “angry” compared to those aged 10 to 15, and half as likely to say they feel “good”.

When it comes to online classes, most say they’re keeping up (75%) but are largely unmotivated (60%) and disliking the arrangement (57%). It stands to reason then, that one of the biggest worries for Canada’s young people includes missing out on school. Three-in-ten (29%) children identify this as their most major concern, a number that rises among teenagers 16 and 17 years of age. Another major fear: that parents or other family members may get sick.

More Key Findings:

  • Half of children across all age groups say it’s their friends they miss the most (54%) as a result of their isolation, while 16 per cent say they miss extracurricular activities like sports or clubs.
  • Asked how they’re spending their time in isolation, two similar activities rise to the top of the list: watching movies and TV/streaming media content (88%) and playing video games (74%).
  • Older teenagers (ages 16-17) are more likely to be spending isolation staying in touch with their peers, with three-quarters both texting/calling friends (76%) and spending time on social media (75%).
  • Asked how they would feel if they had to return to the classroom in the next month, kids are more likely to say they’re looking forward to it (36%) than not (26%). That said, nearly four-in-ten (38%) feel just “okay” about the prospect.

Read the rest of the story here: www.angusreid.org