13th September 2020: Animation Starting a short FutureLearn course tomorrow on filmmaking and animation online and in the classroom. It’s free and online. Go to their website to findout more.

22nd August 2020: Music I’ve been interested in how people have used songs during the Covid-19 outbreak. Music worldwide has come into it’s own during the current crisis: 

  • New songs have been produced as educational tools, including by George Weah, President of Liberia, and Hip Hop Public Health in Harlem
  • Ordinary artists have also responded with message songs e.g. in the UK Psychs’ Spreadin’ 
  • Other artists have produced more comic songs e.g. Coronavirus (feat. Cardi B)
  • The Official Charts company suggested that we got through the first week of lockdown with a combination of gallows humour – surges in popularity for REM’s It’s the End of the World As We Know It and the Police’s Don’t Stand So Close to Me – and inspirational anthems such as Imagine and You’ll Never Walk Alone (This is a quote from The Guardian)
  • Celebrities have joined together to put  videos of appropriate existing songs on YouTube e.g. Imagine
  • Charity singles have been released e.g. by Captain Tom, Michael Ball and the NHS choir
  • Ordinary people have rewritten the words of famous songs to share their experience of lockdown e.g. a parody from Les Miserables
  • Spotify launched a new wellness service which is a mix of music and podcasts
  • Online choirs have become popular e.g. Gareth Malone’s, (and so has online dancing at home or even in the street)
  • People have also famously sung from their own windows e.g. in Italy 
  • Famous musicians, such as Lady Gaga, have organised concerts, made donations and spoken out
  • Even the organisation I work for has responded e.g. staff have listened together to music online

29th July 2020: Story As a break from the previous book I’ve also been dipping into two easier reads. Both show how to use story as a health education device. I’ve just finished Lori Gottlieb’s Maybe You Should Talk to Someone. This is a true story written by a therapist about her work and life. She’s uses the format of a novel in part as a way of getting some useful theory across about mental health. I’m now starting Game of Thrones Psychology edited by Travis Langley. This in contrast is a non-fiction book that uses interest in George RR Martin’s stories to make psychology more accessible.

23rd July 2020: Theory I’m currently reading Creative (Climate) Communication by Maxwell Boykoff. It’s not an easy read. Physically it’s quite dense and personally I would have preferred more subheadings to break up the text. However, I still think it promises to be a useful book. It’s well referenced and only came out last year. It seems to be emphasising that emotions, values, beliefs, identity and lived experience are all important in understanding how people receive and decipher communications.

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