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From Facebook read-alongs to Netflix watch parties, many are finding ways to connect while isolated

“I think right now having some sort of social connection that is safe is important, and we’ve got a lot of ways to do that online."

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — If you're stuck at home and going a little stir crazy, fear not. There are ways you can stay connected with your friends -- virtually.

For example, a new google chrome extension called “Netflix party” allows friends to watch shows together, in sync – with a sidebar chatroom. 

Facebook also has a feature that allows you to listen to and share music with friends.

Dozens of other online multiplayer games are seeing surges – from virtual Uno to Monopoly and Words with Friends.

Others are finding their own ways to creatively connect.

Jordan Fredrick, an English teacher at Queen’s Grant High School in Mint Hill, has started nightly Facebook Live "quarantine read-alongs" on her Facebook page.

Every night at 5 p.m., she logs on to read aloud — voices and all. 

She and her followers are currently on chapter 5 of Harry Potter.

“When all of this has happened, and we’ve gone into quarantine mode I figured it would be a low-stress way to keep connected and allow people to have something to focus on that it’s not the state of our health crisis," Fredrick said.

She says her mission isn’t to go viral or score huge numbers. She just wants to offer a bit of social connection in this chaotic time.

“There’s something about being read to that is so soothing and I think we need that right now more than ever," Fredrick said. “And for some of us, we need something to just pass the time.”

With not much else to do but sit at home, Fredrick and so many others are just looking for unique ways to stay connected in a positive way; albeit from afar.

“I think right now having some sort of social connection that is safe is important, and we’ve got a lot of ways to do that online," Fredrick said. "If it’s reading aloud to each other whether it’s maybe playing dungeons and dragons or having a friends night online where everyone gets together with their favorite drink and talks about the latest episode of The Bachelor, having something is helpful to break the monotony and remind you that you’re not actually alone.”


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