Reese Whipple, Miramonte High School
More than two months ago, online school started, and since then most students do their Zooms in the same place every day. The constant scenery, similar to a cubicle at an office, can have a toll on a students’ sanity.
“Changing scenery for Zoom meetings is important for the wellbeing of students. The more exotic and unorthodox the background the better,” said Dr. Guy Manson, professor of digital psychology at the website Zoom University.
In order to promote better mental health, The Mirador compiled the best locations to help you stay engaged during your Zoom meetings.
The great acoustics and beautiful scenery of a cathedral will amplify anyone’s Zoom experience. Your fellow students will surely notice the wonderful echo effect from the high ceilings, and if they’re lucky they may hear some hymns. The Cathedral of Christ the Life in Oakland is the closest cathedral to Lamorinda, but if you’re less religiously inclined, try your local catacombs or gymnasium for the same acoustic effect.
If you prefer more background noise when you’re on Zoom, perhaps outside a busy coffee shop, grocery store or inside the laundry machine is more to your tastes. Although many noisy places are closed due to the pandemic, with some creativity you can engineer these situations at home. Simply ask your family to have an argument or practice an instrument in the same room. Unmute yourself so the rest of your classmates can enjoy the ambient noise as well. Better yet, bring your fuzzy friends in on the action. Everyone loves dogs so what could be better than a dog barking in the background of your Zoom, or even interrupting class to show them off to the rest of the class?
“I do all my Zooms surrounded by fans. Not only does it keep me cool but also provides background sound whenever I’m unmuted. I know my students all appreciate it,” Miramonte physics teacher Charles Loudbody said.
Perhaps you don’t have access to a crowded sports stadium, a plethora of fans, or arguing family members. Don’t worry, instead just go to the furthest point from your wifi-router without disconnecting while attempting to answer every question the teacher asks. Your fellow students will thank you as you spend minutes stumbling incoherently upon their screens, bringing the class period closer to that 75-minute deadline.
“I love it when someone’s glitching across the screen. I like to imagine where on the screen they might go next. It’s only fair that you should give other students the same privilege,” freshman Johnny Smith said.
By changing your scenery you can improve your mental health and delight your fellow classmates and teachers.