Though we are currently in the midst of the Coronavirus Outbreak — a time where social distancing, self-isolation, and quarantine are topics of regular conversation — it’s important to seek out ways to utilize technology to not only keep busy, but to also stay in touch with loved ones, especially those who may be high-risk. The following guide includes creative ways to stay entertained and connected at home through the COVID-19 Pandemic.
Staying In-Touch with Loved Ones
Not being around the ones you love can be incredibly difficult, especially during uncertain times. One way we can combat isolation and make conversations feel a bit more “in-person” is by using video apps — which create an opportunity to see each other face-to-face while catching up. Below are free video apps that will help you feel closer to others from afar while social distancing.
At-Home Exercise for Seniors
Keeping your body moving is crucial during prolonged periods of time at home. Take a moment to think about what kind of exercises interest you and then seek those out online via YouTube — we suggest low-impact stretching, Tai Chi, or even yoga for seniors! Not sure where to start? Check out The Silver Sneakers or give one of the following exercise videos a try!
Discovering New Literature Online
Reading is one of the best ways to spend downtime while you are self-isolating at home and it can provide an opportunity to decompress without the assistance of television. Through the duration of the COVID-19 outbreak, many online literature sites and libraries have opened up additional online access to audiobooks and e-book downloads — free of charge, as digital library rentals, or through monthly subscription plans. Be sure to visit your local library’s website to learn more about what they may be offering online throughout the Pandemic.
Look through Archive’s impressive selection and read works by literary greats without even having to download them.
With a Kindle reading device — you can access thousands of e-books and digital magazines for purchase online.
Download classic books for free — including authors like Jane Austen, Charles Dickens, & Shakespeare.
Amazon’s audiobook platform may require a subscription but offers a 30-day free trial for new users.
Find your next favorite audiobook through Scribd’s easy-to-use category breakdowns and Editor’s Picks.
Offering free accounts and upgraded subscription plans — Spotify has started incorporating audiobook options in addition to their existing music and podcast streaming.
Unwind with a Movie Night
When the cinemas are closed until further notice and going to the store to pick up a new DVD can put you at risk for coming into contact with the Coronavirus, streaming movies at home can be one of the safest options for viewing films. The following streaming services are offering advanced access to new releases while social distancing is being implemented — keeping you regularly updated with exclusive content.
Stream popular movies, TV shows, and Amazon Originals while also receiving free shipping on select Amazon items.
Free 30-day trial currently available
Apple’s streaming device and subscription service that features exclusive content and original series.
1 year subscription for free with the purchase of an Apple TV device
Enjoying watching movies and TV shows by Disney, Marvel, National Geographic, and more!
Free 7-day trial currently available
Access thousands of TV shows and movies without having to pay additional rental fees on new releases.
Free 30-day trial currently available
Don’t want to sign up for a subscription plan? Rent or buy movies to stream on your devices with iTunes.
Be a Concertgoer… From Your Couch
A creative response to the call for social distancing has resulted in an increase in live music events becoming available for streaming online. Check out the following links to find an upcoming concert that suits your own personal taste in music and settle in with a cup of tea (or a glass of wine) to enjoy the performance from the comfort of your living room.
Upcoming Facebook Live Performances — Updated Regularly
Daily: Melissa Etheridge #ConcertsFromHome Series (Singer-Songwriter) / 6pm EST
Daily: Fred Hersch (Jazz) / 1pm EDT
Daily: Pickathon Presents a Concert a Day (Multi-Genre) / 4pm ET
Weekly: Saturday Nights at the Grand Ole Opry (Country) / 7:30 ET
Arts, Culture, and COVID-19
Spend the day roaming through the halls of a world-renowned museum or learning how to draw from a famous illustrator — without stepping outside your front door. Due to closures stemming from the Coronavirus Pandemic, many museums, aquariums, and cultural institutions are now offering opportunities to help those who are practicing social distancing to not only stay entertained, but also enlightened — through live feeds of nature exhibits, art classes, and online museum walkthroughs.
Sharks or otters? Watch relaxing live feeds of both aquarium exhibits and the Monterey Bay for free.
Choose from over 2,500 world-class museums to visit virtually, any day of the week!
Enjoy the Smithsonian’s wide variety of museums online — including the Natural History Museum, Air and Space Museum, and the Portrait Gallery.
Learn a new skill or brush up on your past drawing experience with online sketching classes taught by professional artists.
Avid bird watcher? Keep up the habit from home with the Cornell Lab Bird Cams!
Indulge in Your Favorite Games
There has never been a better time to get back into Solitaire or your favorite online game! The following are free gaming options that can be played either online or through phone-based apps. Some are even made for multiple players — creating an opportunity to feel connected by playing against friends or family members!
Play a variety of online games curated by the AARP with a yearly membership.
Online version of the popular Japanese brain game based on the logical placement of numbers.
Put together an array of themed puzzles online without the mess or a trip to the store.
Play a game of chess against your computer to improve pattern recognition and awareness.
No deck of cards? No problem! Select your favorite digital deck and play the classic game online.
Partake in a paperless version of the famous crossword puzzle by downloading the app onto your iPhone or iPad.
Play Scrabble solo or against loved ones on your iPhone or iPad with this engaging word game app.
Choose from thousands of trivia categories and play Jeopardy! with friends or family members on your iPhone or iPad!
Spend downtime at home learning a language for free on your iPhone or Android.
Play trivia or other interactive games against friends and family on your iPhone or Google Play.
Trivia and Bingo with Team MG
In the spirit of connectivity during unprecedented times, Medical Guardian’s Team will be curating a series of online Trivia and Bingo for Seniors in order to stay close and engaged with our community. To learn more, “like” Medical Guardian’s Facebook Page to make sure you don’t miss crucial updates or information about our FREE online events and to gain full access to our exclusive COVID-19 resources for Seniors.