Inside: Corona virus panic is not productive. Remain calm. Stay home to work if you are able. Wash your hands regularly and practice social distancing. While you’re practicing that social distancing, find some great resources to help keep the kiddos busy learning to love science.
Corona Virus Panic
Corona Virus panic has begun in Peterborough. I went out a few days ago to buy some groceries and as usual stock up on toilet paper. As a biweekly shopper, I was horrified to find no toilet paper at all in our local Costco. The same held true in my favorite grocery store. Walmart was out. Even Canadian Tire had no toilet paper. I have to admit I was shocked. Three days later and the shelves are still bare of toilet paper and other shelves at the grocery store are looking thin of product.
I’ve lived through a couple of epidemics. SARS was a huge deal in the 2003. I personally knew a few people who died. It was very tragic as it seemed to severely attack even middle aged individuals. But schools were not shut down. Social distancing was not a thing even mentioned back then. Mind you, it did not reach pandemic stage.
Many people are panicking. As a biology major, although I am less inclined to do so, this is way more serious than disease outbreaks I’ve been exposed to in the past. It is a virus. So it will spread. And it has done so very quickly affecting most continents. However, I also know that collectively we can do a lot to slow its spread.
Wash Your Hands
“The bane of my existence since I’ve been working in infection control has been how to get people to wash their hands,” said Stephanie Smith, director of infection control for the University of Alberta Hospital who has worked in the field of infectious disease control for 13 years, adding, “it’s not rocket science.” — sudbury.com
Some pretty basic hygiene principles will go a long way to keeping you healthy. Here is a tweet thread from Karen Flemming PhD that explains exactly why hand- washing is the best defense against Corona virus:
Basically, it’s surrounded by a fat layer. Washing your hands with soap and water has the ability to “dissolve” this greasy fatty layer and kill the virus. I’m told singing “Happy Birthday” twice is approximately how long we should all be scrubbing our hands with soap.
— Karen Fleming (@KarenFlemingPhD) February 28, 2020
Social Distancing to Reduce the Panic
Social distancing is another great way to slow the spread of the virus. Here in Ontario Canada, schools are closed for the next three weeks. University and colleges are closed at least until April. My son who attends the University of Toronto just found out classes, including testing will be online for the rest of the school year. Middle son in Ottawa has been told to work from home. My husband will begin tomorrow working from home at least for a few months.
Corona virus panic is upon us. It is surreal and a bit frightening to find so many grocery store shelves empty of product. I’ve stocked up for the next few weeks. Wine and coffee are two other staples I’ve made sure I’ve got a good supply of as well. If I’m stuck at home for the next few weeks I’m determined to make them as pleasant as possible.
The advice being offered on the media, at least here in Ontario, is valid. Stay home to work if you are able. Avoid crowded situations because not everyone practices good hygiene. It won’t be great for everyone. Extroverts will have a hard time. For introverts, this is a dream come true (to stay home I mean)! If you are a teacher off for a few extra weeks this is a great time to collect extra resources and plan ahead at a much slower pace. I’ve created a great hygiene poster for your classroom, check out the offer below. Good hygiene never goes out of style and the Corona virus will run its course but colds and the flu will return every year without fail.
Take the Time, If you can, To Enjoy the Little Things
Take long walks with your kids and dogs. Binge watch lots of your great shows. Have a glass of wine. Eat some great food in the comfort of your home. But please, please, please….. wash your hands regularly. Download the handy poster I’ve created. Its got some great tips for hygiene. Hang it up in the classroom or at home. It helps to have a visible reminder of basic hygiene practices.
I wish you all to stay healthy and happy. Practice social distancing but be aware of friends and neighbors who may be struggling. Offer to help out if you can even if it means sharing your hoard of toilet paper, lol. If you’ve got kids at home check out my free resource library. Its got some neat ideas to keep the kiddos busy. Check out this page on my blog: Easy Experiments: Valuable How To Resources for Home and School. You’ll find lots of helpful resources for the kids while they’re off school.
And please, keep washing those hands!!!!!!