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Tips for Reducing Social Isolation During Social Distancing

Dear friends of Beyond Differences,

We all know what to do by now: wash your hands, watch the news, stay safe, stay indoors, and, if you do go out – stay 6 feet away from the person you pass by!

But do you know what to do to avoid social isolation for yourself and your family while coping with the new realities of living indoors?

Beyond Differences has been innovating programs for children, parents and teachers on how to create connections, acceptance and inclusion for over ten years. We know what to do. Even now.

And with schools being closed, it's more important than ever that we adults model for our children how to create connections by practicing these strategies ourselves and encouraging them to do the same!

So, take a deep breath and maybe try one or two of our tips to help your family stay connected with others – no matter what your age, we promise you they will work.

Some of these are simple and obvious – but the key to building community and ending social isolation starts with a first step.

Beyond Differences has FREE lesson plans and resources for middle school-aged students available to download immediately that parents and educators can use at home during these times.

National Programs

Know Your Classmates

Our innovative national programs have inspired a cultural and behavioral shift at middle schools and high schools across the country. Join our movement to end social isolation by bringing one or all of these programs to your school.

Know Your Classmates is designed to explore middle school youth's identity and belonging, understand traditions, and recognize stereotypes. Multi-cultural and multi-faith backgrounds are common in today's schools and Know Your Classmates is speaking honestly with children about their feelings and experiences with one another. Know Your Classmates Day is Friday, October 25, 2019!

No One Eats Alone

No One Eats Alone™ teaches everyone how to make friends at lunch, often the most difficult part of the school day. Created and organized by students, this is our most popular program where schools in all 50 United States participate! National No One Eats Alone Day is Friday, February 14, 2020.

Be Kind Online

Be Kind Online is a powerful engagement program for middle school youth, their teachers and families. Focused on creating inclusive communities online, particularly learning to respond to digital gossip to reduce social isolation, Be Kind Online Day is May 15, 2020.

All of our programs encourage taking the pledge to never exclude others, reaching out to someone new, and spreading the word that inclusion is cool!