To Griffin Ting the new school year promises an end to the isolation of last year’s virtual classrooms.
If you’d asked me pre-pandemic where school landed on a list of priorities between one and five, it’s likely I would have listed it at a four. Ask me this year, and the answer would probably be two. I know it might sound weird for a kid to say that he wanted to go back to school, but trust me, what I’m about to share with you might convince you otherwise.
Everything moved really slowly this past year: I rolled out of bed, ate breakfast, then stared at my computer screen for seven hours a day. I rarely ever left my house, even to go see my friends. Even though I had my family, I felt isolated.
The past year made me re-examine the flow of time. Why is it when you’re having fun, time flies, but when you’re bored, it moves so slowly?
Scientists have researched this question. There’s a lot of documented cases of people suffering from physical and mental illness and distorted senses of time after extreme isolation. Our brains are used to taking in a lot of information daily: sounds, encounters with friends, processing conversations. The effect of taking these things away starves us of what we’re used to and stresses us out, according to science writer Michael Bond. It turns out, this experience of having an information-starved, restless mind is a form of boredom.