Thursday, March 19, 2020

COVID-19 #6 of 8 March 2020 -- Online learning and self-care sources, home office tips, how healing others defines us

For April -- I have updated this COVID-19 Post on the blog. 
I will be leaving all the March ones here as "archived" and will add links to updated April versions. 

The most recent info on subjects covered in this post can be found here:


ARCHIVED POST -- information  from this point on was up to date as of 3.31.2020

This post is where I'll share links for activities to enrich our "shelter-in-place" time. (UPDATED 3.29.2020)

This crisis has proved this fact: We value art and artists. We turn to art when we need to be nurtured. All the art --  music -- dance -- posted and streaming now is proof. How we heal each other defines us as individuals and a culture. This is the Renaissance for appreciation of artists, scientists, grocery store clerks and cashiers, delivery drivers, highway rest stop staff. They join the other newly-drafted "first responders" in aprons, smocks, gloves, goggles and masks. They've joined the ranks of our traditional Essential Emergency services. We'll get through this together -- now is the time to be kind and practice those hard human virtues. Love each other.

Please note the links are for general information purposes only and my comments/summaries are not tax/business/legal/medical/child rearing/art instruction advice. Please consult your own resources for advice that best suits your individual situation.

Monterey Bay Aquarium Live Cams
Watch the animals together. Everybody loves otters. The kelp forest live cam is a relaxing break from the news stream. Sharks. Jellyfish. All sorts of aqua-themed fun. Birds too!!! (otter photo by Bill Margol)

Cincinnati Zoo "Home Safari Daily Live Cam"
Meet a new zoo family member each day at 3PM EST on the Cincinnati Zoo and Botianical Garden's Facebook page. The first Home Safari featured the zoo's most famous resident, baby hippo Fiona. There's lots of video footage of Fiona on the zoo's Facebook page too.

If you are enjoying live cam streams by institutions like these, please consider becoming a member or making a donation via their website. It's a way to support what sustains you. (I became a member of the aquarium and sent the zoo a donation). Zoos and aquariums still have staff showing up to take care of the animals. They have bills and reduced amounts of admission ticket sales. The internet is a vast audience. If everyone who "likes" and shares posts like this could also send a small online donation... all those little gestures of gratitude will have a big impact. Online content is never Free. It's here to enjoy thanks to the time, talent and expenses of content creators.

WALKABOUTS with Wildlife Artist You Tube channel "Walkabouts" with wildlife artist and conservationist Manu Carrasco. He's part of the Expedition Art team
He also has art process videos on his Manu Art Channel

There are many terrific online learning sources. I'm sharing some here that are personal favorites, but also some I haven't used. As with all online resources, SIFT and preview to find sources that suit your family's needs.

Info on the SIFT system here:

Fun in First 
A selection of learning sites from the blog of a first grade teacher. Includes the Kahn Academy and Scholastic books, so not just for the elementary school set.

UK site with tips for teachers learning to teach remotely. Good info here for parents too

Another online learning link

My favorite quote from my favorite scientist. 
She discovered Radium and survived two world wars. After the tragic death of her husband Pierre, she raised two brilliant daughters as an engaged and beloved single mom. She faced fears. She survived in part thanks to her scientific approach to all areas of her life. Here's what Albert Einstein said about her:

Buy some songs. Learn some math. Support this non-profit touring theater group doing shows on math and science, only they can't tour now.

And info on this "citizen scientist" night sky project from the Matheatre Facebook page
"Matheatre is an ambassador of the The International Astronomical Union, (    , raising awareness about dark skies and the issues surrounding light pollution. Check out Globe at Night, an amazing citizen science program that invites YOU to collect data to measure light pollution all around the world. A great activity for those of us learning science at home right now."
and also from Matheatre.. a math-themed craft project

Science fun for the family on A Capella Science  You Tube Channel

You Tube clip "The Corona Virus Explained and What You Should Do
from You Tube channel "Kurzegsagt - In a Nutshell" March 19,2020
Link to this video was posted by a scientist who I follow on FB and is a mutual friend. This clip is animation, but reveals science on how this specific virus is transmitted and impacts the body.

PBS Animation about Virus and a higher math lesson too
"What this chart actually means for COVD-19" on channel "Its' Okay to be Smart"

NY TIMES INFO GRAPHIC "How Conoravirus Hijacks Your Cells"

follow my favorite gal scientist on her Facebook page "The Bumbling Biochemist"
Detailed, but digestible, graphics and text on complex science. Including her recent posts deconstructing the science of fighting COVID-19.
Her blog post on hand sanitizers includes info graphics. Explains all the science. Good for jr. high level and up.
More on her website:

MARCH-MADNESS STYLE WOMEN of SCIENCE BRACKET from the Science History Institute
Learn about two amazing women of science in each round. These are tough choices to make. So many great gal scientists finally in the spotlight and not just hidden her-story.
I also highly recommend the Institute's Distillations podcast
and their facebook page.

This You Tube hand washing tutorial uses ink and gloves to make a vivid demonstration

Science, art, and literature overlap. I got this new constabulary word from a science page I follow online.
Regret I have no credit info on images above and below.

Credit for graphic below: art by Rachel SJ @ sj_rachel


John Muir Laws "How to Teach Nature Journaling"
Link includes free download for pdf of "how-to" book. Science and art project together.
Artist Mo Willems kids art lesson online

Hive Five Studios -- indie artist/designer in So Cal
FREE download w/ 7 pages of coloring sheets:

Free Downloadable coloring book from artist Liz Climo (her website here:
Link for coloring book:

Art by Liz Climo

Liz Climo read a-loud

Arist and Author Tony DiTerlizzi takes drawing requests on Facebook live: -- 
This site has links for various animal-themed downloads and activities

Free downloadable activity library from artist Laura Kelly
This next resource shared by an IP attorney, giving credit to her artist client:
"I’m blessed to have amazing, generous and talented creative professionals in my life I call family and friends. I’m honored to share them and their amazingness with you during these challenging times to help bring joy to your days!
MEET Laura Kelly Walters! Laura is sharing her incredible printable library for free. Great for all ages!!!!! Check out her fun projects! Thank You Laura for your heart of gold."

All these "Free" downloads are fantastic. Art is there for us. We need to be there for artists. Credit and compensate. You can buy from their websites or online stores. You can send a modest "thank you" contribution. Many artists are on pay platforms like Ko-fi, Patreon etc. Most are taking a huge income hit with conventions and art fairs being shut down. Even those with day jobs at companies, not to mention those who supplement their art income via jobs at food service/retail/office support, are impacted by COVID-19 related closures. Most artists are free lancers who don't have job benefits. It's called artWORK for a reason. It takes time, talent, experience and materials to provide the art we enjoy. Lets be sure to credit and compensate all the folks who are getting us through this tough time...

The last weekend in March saw the arrival of the song parodies. No copyright infringement as Parody is fair use under US copyright laws. (not legal advice, just my understanding). These two are family friendly and instructive...

Another Disney parody...

Look up the Frozen one on your own. Not family friendly, but effective. 

Many artists are also sharing links for online art classes --
ones they are offering

ones they recommend

Arts and crafts galore online. Look for indie artist sites. Ordering kits and patterns from indie artists helps you and supports an artist. I love these felt animals from "The Wishing Shed" by Rachel Austin.
You can craft your own first aid otter!

Artist and kids book author and illustrator Elise Gravel
is a great source for info graphics and activities.
If you like these, buy her books. Support what you "like" and share.
 Drawing is an excellent mind-body connection exercise for all ages.

Elise Gravel and other authors have been posting they are granting "open license" for non-commercial video readings of their books to be posted online.

Posts like these are learning opportunities. All the art that is being shared and is comforting us started as IP of creators. Intellectual property. It's valuable. It's ImPortant.

Operation Storytime -- kids books read aloud by authors

Here's link for Open License just granted by JK Rowling for ok to use her Harry Potter works by teachers. There's a teacher guideline in the link.
Please note there is a time limit written into this agreement/post. Again --great learning opportunity. What rights are being granted? To whom? For how long?

Author Neil Gaiman grants rights to actor LaVar Burton via Twitter
Artist creative rights are their life blood. Educated fans are the front line defense against art theft and IP infringement. See this blog post for case studies on impact of art theft

Resources for Remote Learning

NATIONAL THEATRE ONLINE -- FREE on You Tube, starting April 2, 2020. New play each Thurs night. Free to stream for 1 week.
Fingers crossed they will include the Cumberbatch "Hamlet" -- not yet announced, but hoping!
 "...the National Theatre’s screenings will continue, for at least another month, although performances have not yet been announced. It is likely that Danny Boyle’s Frankenstein, where Benedict Cumberbatch and Jonny Lee Miller alternated the lead role  will be shown, but also Josie Rourke’s production of Coriolanus, with Tom Hiddleston in the main role, and filmed in the intimate space of the Donmar Warehouse. Also part of the National’s archive is Tom Stoppard’s Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead, starring Daniel Radcliffe and Stephen Sondheim’s Follies with Imelda Staunton. "
I've seen both of the NT Frankensteins. Both great -- you see the most Cumberbatch on stage when he plays the Monster.

Modest online rental fee to view filmed productions. Some free content.


New York Public Library free online titles

10 books Scientists are reading

Facebook page announcement by author Pam Houston:

Pam Houston
18 hrs
...Every Thursday night at 8:00pm eastern, 5:00pm Pacific we will be Zoom hosting a reading by one of our favorite authors (and Writing By Writers instructors). So check out the list and tune in every Thursday to see likes of Paul Lisicky, Lidia Yuknavitch, Rebecca Solnit, Fenton Johnson, Ginger Gaffney, Cynthia Newberry Martin, Kate Wisel, and Carolyn Forché read from their new books. More writers will be added as we go (and as more new books come out). But this is quite a fine list to get us rolling.

FREE online readings by authors, with interview by host Pam Houston, and QandA with listeners, Online via Zoom. Thursdays, 5PM Pacific Time. Here's link with more info:

London Tower Ravenmaster reading his book on his You Tube Channel

These sites offer online virtual tours. Great reference material.

6 Online Exhibitions

Top 10 museum tours
To help creatives and history buffs begin their homeschooling journey, Google has compiled a list of the top 10 virtual museums:
  1. The British Museum, London
  2. Guggenheim Museum, New York
  3. Musée d’Orsay, Paris
  4. National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, Seoul
  5. Pergamon Museum, Berlin
  6. Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam
  7. The J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles
  8. Uffizi Gallery, Florence
  9. MASP, São Paulo
  10. National Museum of Anthropology, Mexico City
Tips for keeping pets/four-legged office mates active. Art by the amazing Lili Chin, Doggie Drawings.
She also made this info graphic on how to support small business during this crisis
More blog posts about Lili and other indie artists fighting back against art theft:

 art by ""

Can't read the fine print credit for this notice. Please LMK if someone has source info.


Home office illustration by Fotini Tikkou illustration. Can you spot the change??
This enforced "work at home" time may be great opportunity to review your overall business plan -- where you are now and how to plan for the future. If you have questions about forming an LLC or other business entity -- registering your copyrights -- creating your own contracts to present to clients (ie retaining reproduction rights and other rights when you sell original art, etc) --- now is the time to start getting answers. Invest your time and money in protecting your IP (intellectual property). It's your most valuable creative asset.

Counsel for Creators Legal Services (a California law firm for Small Business and Indie artists/creators) 
I'm a long-time subscriber to this legal service for indie artists/creators and small businesses. It's where I go to fact-check my legal posts and get info on copyright issues in the news.

This link will take you to an extensive list of resources they have posted and are updating as a public service to the artist community.

This 3 mins video will walk you through some of the services (like weekly online QandA sessions) you can access as a member:

More on the service here:

3.23.2020 Today Show Segment "Can You Contract Coronavirus from Delivery Packages?"
Video and text covers package safety, tips, and a big "thank you" to all the heroes at shipping centers getting essential supplies delivered to homes etc.

Home office tips from Graphic Artists Guild ( a site I trust and frequently cite here on the blog.

"How to Stay Creative Under Stress" blog post by artist Alina Chau:

Next link shows your NASA dollars at work. Scientific studies bring us data to learn from and make conclusions and guidelines. Some bullet points: Wash you hands. Get out in nature. Art is vital .. quote: "I met up with crewmates for movie nights, complete with snacks, and binge-watched all of “Game of Thrones” — twice."
"I spent a year in space, and I have tips on isolation to share" by Scott Kelly.

How to Work and Teach at the Same Time

After reading above series help article, enjoy this bit of humor born from real-life experience. Attributed to Israel, but caveat -- it could be a comedy post from anywhere.. this is the internet after all....w/ Subtitles. The story is universal. Parents lament about online learning: "teachers..dial it down... Now our children will find out how dumb we are. It's not right. Really. How is the kid feeling? He's fine. He's on his phone all day. Ask how I am doing. I'm falling apart."

Visual Op-Ed about Working at Home by a Freelance Cartoonist

Humor piece -- a memo from the four-legged office mates...

Figuring out work and family in the age of Coronavirus

Home office realities has challenges. Art by Gemma Correll
You can support art like this with a donation.. or $2/mo online subscription to "The Nib"


"I Can Control" circle info-graphic from The Counseling Teacher w/ Carrie Stephens clip-art.

"What to do in a Pandemic" art by Ricardo Levins Morales
Poster, mini-prints, and free digital downloads here:

Link to download this coloring sheet by artist Gemma Correll

Gemma's full color version

Art by Introvert Doodles
Marzi Wilson

 info graphic by Total Health
 art by Wendy MacNaughton

We are all in uncharted waters now. There will be ripple effects from this trauma. Be mindful of your mental and emotional wellness. Be well. Take care.

10 reasons not to panic

Psychology Today  Why Fear.. Irrational

PTSD possible...

Science based tips for emotional resilience
Counsel on staying calm

Isolation can trigger depression --- warning signs here

Use the power of stories and rituals..
Deploy the powers of "magical thinking." Stories and rituals can be put to good use.
Quote: "How, during the current pandemic, can we satisfy our psychological need for control — but in ways that effectively reduce transmission of the virus? We can embrace scientifically validated rituals, such as hand-washing, for one thing. We can choose whether we wash thoroughly every time we use the restroom or touch surfaces like doorknobs. We can control our exposure to others through social distancing. We can choose how we greet others — opting for elbow bumps over handshakes. These are decisions we make consciously, several times a day, and they grant us some sense of self-determination during an uncertain time.

It is in caring for others that we nurture connections and culture, not just heal wounds
"Someone once asked anthropologist Margaret Mead what she considered to be the first evidence of civilization. She answered: a human thigh bone with a healed fracture found in an archaeological site 15,000 years old. Why not tools for hunting or religious artifacts or primitive forms of communal self-governance? 
Mead points out that for a person to survive a broken femur the individual had to have been cared for long enough for that bone to heal. Others must have provided shelter, protection, food and drink over an extended period of time for this kind of healing to be possible. 
The great anthropologist Margaret Mead suggests that the first indication of human civilization is care over time for one who is broken and in need, evidenced through a fractured thigh bone that was healed. 
This story is told by Ira Byock, an authority on palliative medicine, in his book The Best Care Possible: A Physician’s Quest to Transform Care Through the End of Life (Avery, 2012). In many ways the book can be understood as an extended commentary on the famous aphorism in medicine: “To cure sometimes, to relieve often, to comfort always.”
photo by Madison Indiana Photography

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