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Catch up on coronavirus stories and special reports, curated by Mike Allen everyday

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Photo courtesy of Wendy MacNaughton

Graphic journalist and best-selling illustrator Wendy MacNaughton is hosting a live 30-minute online drawing class for children, Mondays through Fridays at 1 p.m. EST.

Why it matters: Parents have been hit hard by the impacts of coronavirus, with many working from home while managing their kids' daily schedules and schoolwork. These videos engage kids and encourage creativity while giving parents a break.

How it works: MacNaughton's #drawtogether classes include silly songs, deep breathing exercises, open-ended questions and lots of time to relax and draw.

  • These classes are on Instagram live, accessed via the "live" button on MacNaughton's page.
  • This week, many schools announced they would remain closed through the school year, and MacNaughton, who is also a trained social worker, says she's planning to host classes through that time.

What they're saying: "When we're drawing the hair on a dog, you are drawing one line after another line after another line after another line," says MacNaughton. "That process is calming for me and for them. I hope that it helps them access that that calm place inside themselves when the world's going a little crazy outside."

  • Ada, a 7-year-old in Washington, D.C., tells Axios, "It makes me feel happy and comfortable. She makes me laugh and she's really good at teaching."

Bonus: MacNaughton points out some other book authors and illustrators offering parent resources:

Go deeper

Aug 26, 2020 - Health

Carson: It would "behoove" us to move forward with COVID-19 vaccine and treatment testing

Screenshot: Axios Events

Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson says "this is not necessarily the time to take everything slowly" when it comes to the Trump administration's approach to getting vaccines and treatments to the public.

Why it matters: Carson's comments, made Wednesday during an Axios virtual event, came days after the Food and Drug Administration announced an emergency use authorization (EUA) for treating the coronavirus with convalescent plasma. President Trump accused the agency of slow-walking the development and approval of vaccines and therapeutics to hurt him politically.

Updated Oct 7, 2020 - Health

World coronavirus updates

Expand chart
Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins; Map: Axios Visuals

New Zealand now has active no coronavirus cases in the community after the final six people linked to the Auckland cluster recovered, the country's Health Ministry confirmed in an email Wednesday.

The big picture: The country's second outbreak won't officially be declared closed until there have been "no new cases for two incubation periods," the ministry said. Auckland will join the rest of NZ in enjoying no domestic restrictions from late Wednesday, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said, declaring that NZ had "beat the virus again."

Updated 3 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Omicron dashboard

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

  1. Health: First known U.S. case of Omicron variant identified in California — America probably won't lead the effort to understand Omicron — CDC prepares tougher testing rules for international travelers.
  2. Politics: Omicron travel bans are sign of what's to come — Meta removes accounts linked to COVID disinformation effort by China.
  3. Vaccines: Omicron adds urgency to vaccinating world — Omicron fuels the case for COVID boosters — Moderna loses patent battles tied to COVID vaccine.
  4. World: Germany approves new restrictions for unvaccinated people — Omicron variant detected in more countriesWHO advises people 60 or older to postpone travel due to Omicron
  5. Variant tracker: Where different strains are spreading.