As of the time of writing, COVID-19 is raging worldwide, keeping all of us with our faces pressed to the windows, hoping to see a friend wander by to wave at. Our plushies are tired of snuggling us, and we even got the ones out of the garage that smell weird… and now they don’t smell weird anymore!
Between the endless inside recess, the six millionth video loop on your phone, and just dying for your next change to have something to do, we believe you can find a way to go play! Below are some handy tips for your next PretendAdventure.
For the Introvert
When you can’t go out and play, but you liked to play alone most often, how do you solve the occasional cabin fever itch? Consider the unthinkable now that there’s not a free pizza involved - reading! Whether you prefer a good old-fashioned deadwood book or an eBook, reading lets you explore worlds safely without risking your health! Additionally, studies have shown reading gives you all kinds of benefits, like:
- Improves your brain connectivity¹
- Increases your vocabulary and comprehension¹ ²
- Helps build your empathy skills³
- Reduces your screen time, which is good for your body ⁴
One of the benefits we get most excited about here at PretendAgain is the increase in imagination benefit from reading! ⁵ Making toys takes as much imagination as playing with toys, and we do our best to keep our imagination batteries all charged up and ready to go, in part by reading fun
One last tip, do you have a grown-up? Being read to also has similar benefits as reading yourself, except this time it comes with 100% more kid feels! Isn’t that the best?
For the Extrovert
Are you dying of the lack of social interaction? We are too! Going out is the most energizing activity an extrovert can do and the loss of this ability can be incredibly taxing. More than ever, relying on extended networks via the internet has become the main method for extroverts to satisfy their need for social contact.⁶
For many, gaming is a major escape from observing physical distancing restrictions in place. To do this you just need:
- A PC suited for gaming and/or a video game console
- A voice chat application, such as Discord, which has seen incredible growth in communities available over the course of the pandemic.⁷
Don’t want to play, but still wanna be social? Streaming sites, such as Twitch, are huge boons and have also seen large growth from the pandemic.⁸ Logging in is almost like taking a look at a wall of TV’s, each with different shows for you to pick, except most are games! Many options offer text and voice chat, allowing you to participate how you choose.
We would be remiss if we didn’t also shout-out the best method for kid-feels: couch multiplayer! Grab a roommate, a grown-up, or another friend, throw a controller in their hand, and GO! That blue shell is calling.
Comfort is king! Whether or not you work with the public or have the ability to work at home, comfort matters to stay upbeat. PretendAgain offers a wide selection of clothing you can wear both out of the home and at home, such as our Gamer Pants, shirts, and more! We know from first-hand testing - the comfort of a diaper and a skirt or Gamer Pants just can’t be beaten! For extra comfort, we also offer SnuggleSoft Blankets, letting you get maximum snuggles! Of course, there are other kinds of playing, so stay tuned for our next entry, where we talk about playing.
¹Berns, G., Economics, D., Blaine, K., Prietula, M., School, G., Pye, B., . . . DF, K. (2013, December 09). Short- and Long-Term Effects of a Novel on Connectivity in the Brain. Retrieved January 12, 2021, from https://www.liebertpub.com/doi/10.1089/brain.2013.0166
²Tomblin, J., Catts. H (2015, June 1). The Influence of Reading on Vocabulary Growth: A Case for a Matthew Effect. Retrieved January 12, 2021, from https://pubs.asha.org/doi/10.1044/2015_JSLHR-L-13-0310
³New Survey: Demand for "Uniquely Human Skills" Increases Even as Technology and Automation Replace Some Jobs. (2019, January 16). Retrieved January 12, 2021, from https://news.cengage.com/upskilling/new-survey-demand-for-uniquely-human-skills-increases-even-as-technology-and-automation-replace-some-jobs/
⁴Takeuchi, H., Taki, Y., Hashizume, H., Asano, K., Asano, M., Sassa, Y., . . . Kawashima, R. (2013, November 20). Impact of Television Viewing on Brain Structures: Cross-Sectional and Longitudinal Analyses. Retrieved January 12, 2021, from https://academic.oup.com/cercor/article/25/5/1188/311796
⁵Heavenridge, P., (2015, May 20). Why Read? Reason #6: Knowledge is Power but Imagination is More Valuable. Retrieved January 12, 2021 from https://www.literacyworks.org/news/2015/5/20/why-read-reason-6-knowledge-is-power-but-imagination-is-more-valuable
⁶Travers, M. (2020, April 30). Are Extroverts Suffering More From The Quarantine? Not So Fast, Says New Research. Retrieved January 12, 2021, from https://www.forbes.com/sites/traversmark/2020/04/30/are-extroverts-suffering-more-from-the-quarantine-not-so-fast-says-new-research/?sh=3b05535851a0
⁷Calvin, A. (2020, December 18). Discord valuation has doubled to $7bn. Retrieved January 12, 2021, from https://www.pcgamesinsider.biz/news/71796/discord-valuation-has-doubled-to-7bn/
⁸Stephen, B. (2020, May 13). The lockdown live-streaming numbers are out, and they're huge. Retrieved January 12, 2021, from https://www.theverge.com/2020/5/13/21257227/coronavirus-streamelements-arsenalgg-twitch-youtube-livestream-numbers