Five weird ways Northwestern students distract themselves in class
    Photo By Aditi Bhandari / North By Northwestern

    Move over, generic social media websites. More and more college students nowadays are finding unique ways to pass the time they spend sitting in class. After all, who actually cares about paying attention in lecture when the notes are going to be posted on Blackboard in a few hours? There are other things that are clearly more deserving of our attention, as listed in this compilation of the five weirdest thing people do to distract themselves in class.


    Despite the fact that it involves using needles, knitting is one of the most placid activities to pass your time, and all it requires is some time and half of your attention. Once you get used to the process and the rhythm, the stitches come naturally, which even allows you to actually listen to your professor (if you so choose). Obviously, the best time to start doing this is during the fall; by the end of the quarter you’ll even have a new scarf of hat to get you through the terrible winter.

    Creating your own version of 2048

    Playing the original 2048 is SO two months ago. Trust Northwestern students to take it to the next level. With “NU Stuco 2048,” “2048: Waa-Mu Edition” and even “NU 2048” making the rounds, no one can stop you from creating your own version based on any imaginable concept whatsoever. Want a semi-justifiable excuse to look at pictures of sporks, Nicholas Cage or llamas? Make a 2048 game out of them and no one will question your intentions.

    Watching rocket launches

    Unsurprisingly, it’s the students in the astronomy courses who are most prone to watching live streams of rocket launches, such as the recent SpaceX mission. There’s also a channel dedicated to the view from the International Space Station, which goes through approximately 32 sunrises and sunsets in a day. Unless the ISS suddenly makes alien contact, watching space is an extremely laid-back activity, especially after the sudden excitement that a launch generates in the last few seconds before liftoff. 


    Nothing in the world comes close to a well-done manicure, but in our daily lives, sacrificing the time to do so can easily translate to a lack of sleep because god forbid you go to bed before your nails have completely dried. Instead, NU students can make the most of their one hour lectures by filing, buffing and painting their nails, giving them enough time to dry before class is over. Just be careful of unsteady desks; nail varnish stains are difficult to get rid of.


    Origami is probably the most accessible creative activity for students to pursue because many of us carry notebooks, or at the least, tissues. With designs ranging from simple shapes to elaborate paper sculptures, this skill is easy to pick up and develop into a masterful art. There are so many online guides and YouTube tutorials that with Northwestern’s far-reaching (albeit faulty) Wi-Fi it’s easy to start transforming plain sheets of paper into animals, vehicles and figurines. The possibilities are endless.

    Photo By Aditi Bhandari / North By Northwestern


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