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First-Graders Return to School in China with Song Dynasty-Inspired Social-Distancing Hats

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First-graders in Hangzhou have returned back to school after months of Covid-19 quarantine. In order to ensure safety, some classes are wearing social-distancing hats reminiscent of those from the Song Dynasty.

The three-foot long sides extending out of the hats have been made out of balloons, cardboard, and foam. The hats in the Song Dynasty weren’t nearly as DIY. But as Duke professor Eileen Chow points out on Twitter, they were also intended for social distancing.



They kept officials and politicians from speaking too quietly together, “conspiring sotto voce,” while in court.

Users found the children’s hats clever and adorable.

This week, Beijing and Shanghai allowed some students in middle and high schools to return. The Chinese Ministry of Education stated that all students will have their temperature taken before entering, and must have a “green code” on an app that calculates their infection risk level.

People have taken many other creative measures across China in response to Covid-19, from ancestor-worshipping online to the country’s own capital city banning the “Beijing Bikini.

Emily Zhang
    Emily is a student in California. She likes emails and surfing.