Courtesy Caleb Harris
May 21, 2020 11:12 AM EDT

TIME for Kids received letters from students expressing their feelings during this crisis. Here’s what they had to say:

It feels like being trapped sometimes. Then, when we go out of the house, it’s like we’re free, like a bird out of its cage for the first time. —Emma Rich, 11, Dover, N.H.

My dad works in a hospital as a doctor. We can’t hug him when he comes home until he takes a shower. He is at the hospital many times until nighttime. —Adrian Garces, 5, Miami

Photograph by Hannah Beier for TIME

Staying home has made me realize that this is the perfect time to bond with your family. —Araina Potnis, 9, Wayne, Pa.

If my friends are perhaps reading this, I do want to say I really miss them. —Madelynn Allen, 12, Englewood, Colo.

This new virus can be pretty scary. If you’re someone who’s easily worried, my advice is to talk to someone you know well about how you feel. Sometimes they can reassure you. —Holly Hook, 9, Brooklyn

I don’t get to see my friends much, or my dad. He works for UPS. I appreciate what essential workers and first responders are doing to keep the world safe! —Caleb Harris, 8, Douglasville, Ga.

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One week turned into two weeks, two weeks turned into four weeks, and all of the sudden we weren’t going back to school this year. This makes me really sad. —Madyson Reed, 9, Spring Branch, Texas

I’ve been in quarantine for over two months, and one of the ways I’ve kept in touch with friends has been through Fortnite. A lot of parents think the game is addictive, but when they forbid it instead of setting clear time limits, their kids miss out.

Fortnite is better than talking on FaceTime ­because you can do things like build and fight alongside each other. You can also team up with friends and play against people around the world. And when nothing else is going on in your life but you still want to talk, you can discuss what’s happening in the game. Plus, you can connect with friends without asking your parents if you can use their phone.

Parents, it’s hard for your kids not to see their friends in person. Don’t deprive them of another way to hang out. Let them play Fortnite. —Eli Smith, 10, Brooklyn

This appears in the June 01, 2020 issue of TIME.

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