Kids Report on COVID-19: Henry in Massachusetts

March 23, 2020
ONE TEAM Henry and his sisters play Pandemic, in which all players must work together as a single team in order to win the game.

We asked our team of TFK Kid Reporters for their perspective on the coronavirus pandemic. Here, TFK Kid Reporter Henry Carroll, from Boston, Massachusetts, shares his thoughts on what kids can do to help.

Over the New Year’s holiday, our close family friends came skiing with us. As a present, they brought me a board game called Pandemic. At the time, I didn’t know how appropriate for 2020 this game would be.

With most board games, players play against each other. But in Pandemic, all players win or lose together as a single team. To win, you must work as a group and collaborate to cure four diseases. Everyone has a job and can contribute to the group’s success.

During a real pandemic, everyone also has a role to play. Different groups must work together to keep people from getting sick. Governments establish plans; health professionals care for sick people; scientists look for treatments and cures; the press makes sure people are aware of what’s happening. Even kids can help.

Though kids might not always feel like they are important, they can help their family and their community in big ways. They can prevent the virus from spreading by practicing social distancing, good hand-washing, and not touching their faces. Kids can also do things to thank the adults who are working hard to fight the pandemic and provide essential services. My sister and I did this. I wrote a letter to scientists at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and my sister wrote a letter to doctors working in a hospital emergency room. We thanked them for trying to make things better. Hopefully, our letters will make them feel happy.

Kids can also participate by helping their family. When school is canceled, kids can help around the house and entertain themselves if their parents need to work from home. My sisters and I have had fun doing art with glitter dots, making our own books, building pillow forts, and, of course, playing Pandemic. Kids who have younger siblings, can entertain them by reading to them or playing with them. But the most important thing kids can do to help both their family and their community is to be supportive and understanding of other people.

This is a hard time for everyone, but it can be empowering for kids to realize they can help. Whether it’s in the game Pandemic or in real life, everyone has an important role. Working together is how you win.

Kids, ask a parent or guardian if you can tell us about your experience during this time. If so, have them email us at Your response might be featured on our website or in an upcoming issue.

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