Mindful Mondays: The Best Life-Saving “Drug” I Found

Written by Carl Nassar, President of Heart Centered Counseling

Mindful Mondays: The Best Life-Saving “Drug” I Found

Therapy saved my life. That wouldn’t come as a surprise to you if video footage of my childhood was available for you to view.

The screen would zoom in on a boy whose constant companion was loneliness. A boy whose imaginary friend Bucky tried valiantly, but without success, to fill the relational void. You’d discover a boy attending a religious elementary school promoting the fear of God over the love of God, and a fear of the world rather than a love for it.

In therapy, I came to understand how my past was shaping my future (Freud called it “the transference of everyday life,” and Berne labeled it “replaying your life script”). I learned how my scared-ness was trampling over my vitality (Perlz called it the “dilemma of secondary Gestalts”). I learned what it looked like to open my heart, first to my own pain, as something to go through (and not around), and then to the world, as a way to lean in (instead of leaning out).

I loved therapy. It helped me to reclaim my excitement and energy for life. It also gave me my voice. That love grew into a professional desire to become a therapist myself. I wanted to help good people realize that they no longer needed to simply get by in this life, but rather to discover and learn to thrive. I wanted to help others work through the traumas (of childhood and later life) to become the people they’re meant to be—to find their voice in the world and to use it to express all of who they are, in its endless unfolding.

After 20 years in the field, I’m more convinced than ever that the popular song from 1965 speaks a profound truth, “What the world needs now is love, sweet love…” and, while not in the song, I might add a line about therapy being a beautiful way to discover that love within ourselves.

I’m more convinced now than ever that each of us can become the hope we long to see in the world. I believe this so much that I created a video series called “What if a Therapist Reported the News?” It’s my way of helping people break free from the paralysis of waiting for the news to change, and instead encouraging each one of us to find the courage—in how we live our everyday lives—to take the small steps that allow us to create the news we’re waiting for.

As we come to the end of our time together in this blog post, I want to share my gratitude for you…not only for taking the time to read this, but for each small act of courage—each small step toward kindness—you show in your everyday life. Because one final lesson therapy taught me was that each us matter far more than we image, and each small act adds up to create a new world, even if we don’t see its dawning quite yet.

Carl Nassar is known differently to different people. To some, he’s a professional counselor offering a safe space to reclaim hope and tenderness. To others he’s the president of Heart Centered Counseling, supporting a team of 250 providers that together provide access to a counseling and psychiatric care throughout Colorado (www.heartcenteredcounselors.com). And to those who find his YouTube channel (https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCW3MmwKez76a51rQRp17qwQ/), Carl offers a thoughtful and inspiring answer to the question What if a Therapist Reported the News?

 

To stay informed on the latest Mental Health: Mind Matters programs and experiences, visit the Mind Matters webpage and follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter. Don’t forget to tag us in your experiences when you visit the museum to help us #MakeItOk. 

We look forward to welcoming you to FCMoD to experience this amazing exhibit!  

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Mindful Mondays: Local Mental Health Resources

Mindful Mondays: Local Mental Health Resources

The Mental Health: Mind Matters special exhibition opens the door to greater understanding, conversations, and empathy toward the challenges of mental health. It’s just one way our community can come together to reduce the stigma and #MakeItOK to talk about mental health.  

It’s okay to ask for help. There are many resources available here in our community to support you or anyone you know who might be struggling with their mental health. 

Experiencing a mental health crisis? 24/7/365 support is available through Colorado Crisis Services: Call1-800-493-TALK (8255) or text HOME to 741741. 

FCMoD is grateful to be working directly with these community partners on programming and community outreach: 

Alliance for Suicide Prevention – We prevent suicide in Larimer County through training and education, providing outreach, and offering support. 

Colorado State University – Child Trauma and Resilience Assessment Center – The Child Trauma and Resilience Assessment Center provides resilience-based trauma assessments and offers recommendations that focus on helping youth and families recognize, understand, and value their own strengths in responding to and healing from trauma. 

Early Childhood Council of Larimer County – Leap Coalition – Strengthening and connecting our systems so that all young children in Larimer County, Colorado will be supported in their social development and emotional wellbeing in a culturally responsive manner. 

Foundations Counseling – Foundations Counseling provides a proven, collaborative approach to counseling in Fort Collins, Loveland, and Windsor, Colorado. We offer caring, expert assistance in an environment built around personal respect and dignity. Throughout Northern Colorado our experienced therapists rely on time-tested and proven techniques to help you find your way.  

Health District of Northern Larimer County – The Health District of Northern Larimer County is a public agency that has been meeting local healthcare needs since 1960. Today, we provided residents of northern Larimer County with dental, mental health and preventive health services. The Connections program offers answers, offers and support to individuals and families looking for help with mental health or substance abuse concerns. CAYAC (Child, Adolescent, and Young Adult Connections) is a service of Connections that helps young people (up to age 24) with the early identification, assessment/testing, and treatment of mental health and substance abuse concerns. Connections also offers regular classes and trainings to the public, often at no cost. 

Heart Centered Counseling – Heart Centered Counselors provides caring support for the people of Colorado. We counsel people to get them through the hard times, through the broken hearts, and through the painful emotions. We are a growing team of 200+ counselors who provide a comprehensive therapy practice. 

Larimer County Behavioral Health Services – Through a publicly approved .25% Sales and Use tax, Behavioral Health Services responsibly invests in community-driven work to increase access to behavioral health services and improves outcomes for all Larimer County residents. 

Music Minds Matter – We are committed to supporting the brain health and mental wellness of music communities everywhere. 

Poudre School District – Counseling Department – School counselors are vital members of every school’s education team. Currently, 80 professional school counselors serve students in 39 schools in Poudre School District, assisting kindergarten-12th grade students in academic success, college and career readiness, and social/emotional development. 

SummitStone Health Partners – For more than 60 years, SummitStone Health Partners has been transforming lives through recovery, renewal and respect by providing unsurpassed behavioral health prevention, intervention and treatment services in Larimer County. SummitStone provides more than 50 services dedicated to treating mental health and addiction disorders for people of all ages. 

Additional community resources highlighted within the exhibit or during programming: 

Carl Nassar, President of Heart Centered Counseling, reports on“What if a therapist reported the news?” 

Support for people experiencing homelessness is available through Homeward Alliance and the Murphy Center for Hope  

Healing and support for Black, Indigenous, and People of Color is being convened by the BIPOC Alliance 

CSU Center for Mindfulness 

Colorado Spirit COVID-19 Support Program – Larimer County

Colorado Spirit COVID-19 Support Program – Weld County

North Range Behavioral Health – At North Range Behavioral Health, we believe that everyone deserves high-quality treatment that leads to recovery. North Range Behavioral Health provides compassionate, comprehensive care for people who face mental health and addiction challenges. This organization is located in Weld County, and is also a provider of Colorado Crisis Services.

QPR Gatekeeper Training – The QPR (Question, Persuade, Refer) mission is to reduce suicidal behaviors and save lives by providing innovative, practical and proven suicide prevention training. You can find local trainings on the website – SummitStone Health Partners provides monthly trainings that are also posted on the FCMoD calendar!

Colorado-National Collaborative for Suicide Prevention

Recordings of FCMoD’s Discovery Live mental health expert panels and events are available on YouTube 

We will continue adding resources to this post as they are shared by our community partners.

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Mindful Mondays: Celebración del Día de Muertos

Post written by Katie Auman from Poudre River Public Library District, originally posted October 17, 2019.

Celebración y Ofrenda del Día de Muertos

“La cultura es lo que, en la muerte, continúa siendo la vida.”

El día de muertos es una celebración de México y Latinoamérica donde cada año las familias se reúnen el 1 y 2 de noviembre para honrar a sus ancestros y seres queridos. El origen de esta celebración data cientos de años atrás cuando los Aztecas celebraban rituales durante el verano dedicados a la muerte. Después de la colonización, las fechas de las festividades se cambiaron para coincidir con creencias post-colombinas como “la noche de todos los santos.”

Desde entonces, esta celebración ha sido acogida en diferentes partes del mundo y se centra en honrar, recordar y celebrar la vida de aquellos que ya han partido.

Ofrenda

La ofrenda o altar es un elemento fundamental en esta tradición, la cual es cuidadosamente creada en honor de los familiares o personajes ilustres fallecidos. Es importante señalar que cada familia o individuo crea una ofrenda que es personal, compleja y que utiliza detalles y elementos que tienen un gran significado. En la siguiente imagen encontrará un breve resumen de algunos de estos elementos y sus significados.

 

Altares en miniatura para niños y familias

Es fácil crear un altar en miniatura del Día de Muertos inspirado en los altares más grandes que verán en las celebraciones tradicionales. Con este proyecto de “hágalo usted mismo”, podrá construir un altar incorporando los elementos tradicionales de una ofrenda con su toque personal, pero en un espacio más pequeño como una caja de zapatos.

Material:

  • Caja de zapatos
  • Papel construcción o papel de envoltura para cubrir su caja
  • Marcadores, crayones o pintura
  • Tela
  • Tijeras
  • Pegamento, cinta adhesiva o engrapadora
  • Vela
  • Flores / Cempazuchitl
  • Papel Picado
  • Calaveras de Azúcar
  • Fotografía de su ser querido
  • Vaso con agua
  • Algo para comer
  • Objetos de especial interés para su ser querido

Si no tiene estos artículos, ¡deje volar su imaginación! Haga sus propias flores con papel y dibuje sus decoraciones.

Paso 1

Utilice tela, papel construcción, marcadores, etc. para decorar la caja de zapatos en colores como morado, rosa mexicano, naranja y rojo. Cubra el interior y el exterior de la caja de zapatos.

Paso 2

Coloque una foto del ser querido que está honrando en el centro de la caja. Llene la caja con artículos que le recuerden a esa persona. Cualquier elemento puede ser una ofrenda – fotos, objetos de especial interés de su ser querido, pertenencias, etc.

Paso 3

Decore los espacios vacíos de la caja y añada alimentos o dulces.

Paso 4

Decore la orilla de la caja con flores, velas, papel picado y un pequeño vaso de agua. Estos elementos representan los cuatro elementos: la tierra, el fuego, el viento y el agua.

 

 

Día de Muertos Celebration

“Culture is what, in death, continues to be life.”

The Day of the Dead / Día de Muertos is an annual Mexican and Latin American celebration when families gather to honor the memory of deceased loved ones on November 1 and 2. Scholars trace the origins of this celebration back hundreds of years to Aztec festivals held during the summer. After colonization, the festivities were shifted to coincide with “All Saint’s Eve.”

Since then, the festivity has been celebrated all over the world and centers on honoring, remembering, and celebrating the lives of those who have departed.

Traditional Altar Display

One of the most visual parts of the Día de Muertos tradition is the altar, a carefully crafted centerpiece of the annual celebration. Each family or individual’s Día de Muertos altar is a complex and personal creation with incredible symbolism as each element included carries specific meaning. Here are the most important elements, from flowers to food to fire, and what they mean.

 

DIY Shoebox Altar for Kids and Families

It’s easy to create a Día de Muertos miniature altar modeled after the larger altars you’ll see at traditional celebrations. You can still follow the requirements of an authentic altar and personalize it, but in a smaller space. This is a great DIY craft for kids!

What you’ll need:

  • A shoebox
  • Construction paper or wrapping paper to cover your box
  • Markers, crayons, or paint
  • Fabric
  • Scissors
  • Glue, tape, or stapler
  • Candle
  • Flowers / Cempazuchitl
  • Tissue paper / Papel Picado
  • Sugar Skull / Calaveras de Azúcar
  • A photograph of your loved one
  • A small glass with something to drink
  • Something to eat
  • Offerings (items of particular interest to your loved one)

If you don’t have these items, feel free to think outside the box and get creative! Create orange marigold flowers/cempazuchitl flowers out of paper or cut out and color your own decorations.

Step 1

Use your fabric, construction paper, markers, etc. to decorate the shoebox in colors like purple, pink, orange, and red. Cover the inside and the outside of the shoebox.

Step 2

Place a photo of your loved one you are honoring in the center of the box. Fill the box with items that remind you of that person. Any item can be an ofrenda – photos, objects, anything.

Step 3

Fill the remaining space in the shoebox with décor and add other treats and foods.

Step 4

Surround the box with flowers, candles, tissue paper, and small glass of water. These items represent the four elements of earth, fire, wind, and water.

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Mindful Mondays: The Feelings Volcano

Mindful Mondays: The Feelings Volcano

This activity is recommended for ages 5-11.

Have you ever been overwhelmed by a strong emotion? Maybe you were angry with a friend for taking your favorite book, or frustrated that you couldn’t figure out that math problem? We all have strong feelings sometimes, and that’s okay! Try this is a twist on the classic baking soda-and-vinegar volcano experiment, and explore why it’s important to express and regulate our emotions in healthy ways!

Supplies:

  • Empty plastic bottle or 8 oz cup 
  • Measuring cup 
  • Funnel 
  • 1 tbsp baking soda 
  • Distilled white vinegar 
  • Food coloring (if desired) 

Instructions:

  1. To get ready: Place the baking soda in the empty plastic bottle or 8 oz cup using the funnel. 
  2. Think about a time when you were overwhelmed by a strong emotion (feeling sad, embarrassed, mad, nervous, etc.). Talk with your grown up about what happened. What happened to make you feel this way? What did you do about it?
  3. Pour a little bit of vinegar into the measuring cup. (Add food coloring if desired). This vinegar represents the feelings you had in your story. Now, let’s say that instead of expressing your feelings and doing something to manage them, you let them keep building and building and building up inside of you!
  4. Add more vinegar “feelings” to the cup until it reaches the ½ cup mark. What do you think will happen when you act on your feelings by adding the vinegar to the baking soda?
  5. Pour the vinegar into the baking soda. What happened? All of those sour feelings came out!
  6. Time for another experiment! What if instead of letting those sour feelings build up, you did something to manage them? Maybe you talked to your grown up about how you were feeling, or maybe you took some long, deep breaths! When you take steps to manage them, your feelings aren’t so sour anymore – they’re more like water than vinegar! What do you think will happen if you add water to baking soda?
  7. Pour the water into the baking soda. What happened? This time, we didn’t let our emotions get the best of us!
  8. There’s nothing wrong with having feelings! They’re part of being human. But it’s important that we learn how to express and manage our feelings so that we can control them instead of them controlling us. Work with your grown up to make a list of ways you can express and manage your emotions in hard situations, when you sense a feelings volcano brewing! Some ideas you might include: 
  • Take 10 slow, deep breaths. 
  • Draw or write about your feelings. 
  • Talk about your feelings with a friend, family member, or teacher. 
  • Dance to your favorite song.  
  • Stretch your body. 
  • Hang your strategies up somewhere to reference throughout the year! 

 

Each mind matters. Taking care of our mental health is important to all of us – everywhere and always. Learn more by visiting FCMoD’s special exhibition Mental Health: Mind Matters, open through January 10th.

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Mindful Mondays: Let’s Talk About It!

Mindful Mondays: Let’s Talk About It!

The Fort Collins Museum of Discovery (FCMoD) is honored to bring the groundbreaking traveling exhibition Mental Health: Mind Matters to our community from October 3, 2020- January 10, 2021. With the generous support of our community partners this exhibit and the museum are free during the run of this exhibit 

In the fall of 2018, FCMoD secured this exhibit knowing that mental health would be a timely topic for our community. And while this topic was important two years ago, the need for us as individuals, neighbors, parents, children, community members and community leaders to engage in conversation about mental health and mental illness has only grown.

Between the COVID-19 public health crisis, economic recession, wildfires, and unrest around racial justice, the year 2020 has given us all our share of challenges. Although uncertainty and difficulties still walk with us through this time, so do the threads of hope and greater resiliencyThis year, we found new ways to connect with one another, had opportunities to challenge assumptions and reframe narratives, and refocused areas in our lives that we find to be most important. This exhibit provides yet another opportunity to step into a conversation that touches all of our lives, in an environment that is safe, welcoming and hopeful. 
 

Mental Health: Mind Matters is an interactivetrilingual exhibit that provides experiences for visitors of all ages to help open the door for greater understanding, conversations and empathy toward the challenges of mental health. Walking through the exhibit you will have the opportunity to engage with empathy-building experience like hearing from people – in their own words – about how mental illness affects their lives. Interactives like noise-distorting headphones help visitors experience the difficulties some people have with symptoms of psychosis. Another interactive lets you dance around to learn about the connection between physical activity and mental wellnessTest your knowledge with a multi-player quiz about common misperceptions around mental illnesses and mental health. Anchored toward the back of the exhibit, you can check out a resource area that includes both children and adult activities, books and other helpful resources on mental health. Don’t forget to visit the Worry Shredder to shred your worries away! These are just some of the many incredible experiences in this remarkable exhibit. 
 

Working with our community partners, FCMoD will feature virtual and in-person programming throughout the dates of this exhibit. Forest therapy walks encourage participants to relax in nature. FCMoD’s virtual lecture series, Discovery Live, offers opportunities to hear from the mental health experts in our community and learn about the amazing work their organizations are doing. Programming in the museum’s gallery demonstrates different mindfulness techniques and relaxation activities. Visit fcmod.org to find the programs that resonate with you and learn how to take this conversation to the next level. 

As you consider visiting FCMoD, we want you to know about our deep commitment to keeping you safe during your visit. Gallery hosts regularly clean the museum throughout the day, with special attention to high-touch areas. All visitors over the age of two to are required to wear a face covering, and contact information will be requested at the beginning of the visit to help with contact tracingAlthough the museum is free through January 10, ticket reservations are required to help manage capacity and appropriate physical distancing. Groups 15 should contact the museum to reserve blocks of tickets. Ticketing information is available on the Plan Your Visit webpage. 

 

To stay informed on the latest Mental Health: Mind Matters programs and experiences, visit the Mind Matters webpage and follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter. Don’t forget to tag us in your experiences when you visit the museum to help us #MakeItOk. 

We look forward to welcoming you to FCMoD to experience this amazing exhibit!  

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Daily Discovery: Endangered & Forgotten

Post written by Alexa Leinaweaver, Live Animal Husbandry Coordinator.

Daily Discovery: Endangered & Forgotten

National Wildlife Day is September 4, 2020! To celebrate, let’s explore some of the less well known endangered species in Colorado.

We hear a lot about endangered species these days, as the climate changes around us and human activities challenge wildlife survival. Often the articles and advertisements you see feature fuzzy and adorable animals like the Giant Panda or the Sea Otter. Here in Colorado, our featured endangered wildlife tends to be appealingly majestic, like the Grey Wolf (whose reintroduction to Colorado is on November’s ballot for 2020) or even FCMOD’s beloved Black-footed Ferrets. These are species that definitely deserve attention – but there are many more of our wildlife neighbors that need our attention and help that may not be so cute or exciting. There are so many ignored species in the world that are in difficult or dangerous situations thanks to habitat loss, pollution, water loss, and many other human activities.

Here are just a few of our Colorado wildlife neighbors in need:

Least Tern (Sterna antillarum), Federally Endangered

The Least tern is the smallest member of the gull and tern family. They’re only 9 inches long. They nest in the summer on sandbars along major rivers in the central U.S., including in Colorado. This bird was listed as federally endangered in 1985. A lot of nesting habitat in the U.S. has been lost to the birds because of the ways that humans have changed the river systems: dams and reservoirs; introduction of invasive plants; stabilizing river banks, hydropower, and diverting water.

Bonytail Chub (Gila elegans), Federally Critically Endangered

The bonytail is a freshwater fish that lives in the Colorado River basin. It can grow up to 2 feet long and can live up to 50 years. It was added to the endangered list in 1980, and is now the rarest big-river fish in the Colorado. The bonytail, along with numerous other fish species in the Colorado, suffered drastic population declines after the construction of Hoover Dam and other human projects that divert water from the river and change how the water flowed and pooled. These fish also suffer from competition from non-native fish species that humans have introduced into bonytail habitat. At this time, there is no self-sustaining wild population of these fish, and human-run hatcheries are all that maintains the species.

North Park Phacelia (Phacelia formosula), Federally Endangered

The North Park Phacelia only exists in one place in the entire world: the North Park area in Jackson County. It likes to grow on bare slopes and eroding rocks in ravines in the North Park area, where few other plants are able to survive. This phacelia was listed as federally endangered in 1982. It is threatened by livestock, off-road vehicles, commercial and residential development, and petroleum exploration. It also suffers from the loss of pollinating insects in the area, which it depends on to reproduce.

You may be wondering what you can do to be a better neighbor to these species, and the other species in our beautiful state that are threatened or endangered. Here are some steps that you can try:

Educate yourself. Learn about the different kinds of wildlife that live in Colorado with us, and what kinds of things we humans are doing that are putting them at risk.

Take action. Think about how much water you use, or whether the plants in your yard are native or invasive. Consider how much energy you use leaving on lights in an empty room, or streaming your favorite songs rather than downloading them. Look at how much gas your vehicle uses, or how many plastics or other petroleum products you use on a daily basis. Even a small change you can make in your own behavior can be a help to our endangered neighbors.

Talk to your friends and family about why this wildlife is in danger, and why it’s important to you. Your friends and family care about your thoughts and opinions. Help them to understand how important it is to help all.

Contact your representatives in government. These threatened and endangered species do not have a voice in our government, but you do. If you are old enough, vote for candidates that pay attention to wildlife. But at any age, you can make your voice heard! Make sure that your representatives know how important it is that we are good neighbors to all the wildlife in Colorado, in the country, and in the world.

Follow along with our Daily Discovery! Click here for all activities that you can do at home.

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Daily Discovery: Women Who Rock

Post written by  Forrester Tamkun, Music & Sound Lab Assistant.

Daily Discovery: Women Who Rock

Throughout history there has always been amazing and strong women. Here are a few such woman who made their mark in the Music Industry.

Dolly Parton

Dolly Rebecca Parton was born on January 19th, 1946, in Locust Ridge, Tennessee. She was the fourth of twelve children in a poor farming family. However, from a young age she showed a high aptitude toward music and would ultimately pioneer the emergence of fusing the genres of country and pop. Upon high school graduation, Dolly set off toward the music Mecca of Nashville, where here musical career began to blossom.

In Nashville, Parton became the protégée of Porter Wagoner, a star of the Grand Ole Opry. Working with Wagoner gathered attention toward Parton and she quickly became one of country’s most popular singers. Parton launched her solo career in 1974 and released her critically acclaimed song “Jolene.” She was chosen as female singer of the year by the Country Music Association (CMA) for 1975 and 1976. In 1978, Dolly began expressing her poppy side with her song “Here You Come Again,” which won her a Grammy. That same year she was declared entertainer of the year by CMA, speaking odes to her convergence of the two musical styles.

Click here to listen to “Jolene” by Dolly Parton.

Parton would continue to win Grammy’s and awards throughout her musical career and was inducted in 1999 into the Country Music Hall of Fame. Aside from heavy success in the musical realm, Parton has acted in several successful films as well as made guest appearances on many films and television shows.

She has also notably been very charitable in her life as well. In 1988 she created the Dollywood Foundation which aimed to provide educational resources and inspiration for children. She was named a Living Legend by the Library of Congress in 2004 for her enrichment of American cultural heritage.

Aretha Franklin

Perhaps one of the most distinguishable female voices in music is Aretha Franklin. The Queen of Soul was born Aretha Louise Franklin in Memphis, Tennessee, on March 25th, 1942. Her father, C.L. Franklin was a Baptist minister at the New Bethel Baptist Church in Detroit for over thirty years. He was known to have a “Million-Dollar Voice” which seemingly passed onto Aretha as she grew up singing in church and learning to play the piano by ear, culminating in complete understanding of the correct tones and pitches.

Aretha signed with Columbia Records at the mere age of 18 and released her first song and album, reaching up to 10 on the billboard. In 1966 she signed with Atlantic Records and released her monumental hit song “Respect.” She released three more top ten hits through Atlantic Records and won her first two Grammy’s. Not only did Aretha achieve musical success, but she was consistently a voice that spread the importance of equality, peace, and justice for Americans.

Click here to listen to “Respect” by Arethra Franklin.

Aretha set history as the first woman to be inducted in the Rock ‘N Roll Hall of Fame. Her 1972 album, Amazing Grace, is the best-selling gospel album of all time. Franklin collaborated with countless other musicians throughout her life, including George Michael, Elton John, and James Brown. She too appeared in film, most famously alongside Ray Charles and James Brown in the hit feature film The Blues Brothers, in 1980.

The Queen of Soul will always resonate as one of the most powerful voices in music history. Her music and what it stood for will echo the dire importance of racial equality and justice in society.

Joan Jett

Aretha set history as the first woman to be inducted in the Rock ‘N Roll Hall of Fame. Her 1972 album, Amazing Grace, is the best-selling gospel album of all time. Franklin collaborated with countless other musicians throughout her life, including George Michael, Elton John, and James Brown. She too appeared in film, most famously alongside Ray Charles and James Brown in the hit feature film The Blues Brothers, in 1980.

Click here to listen to “I Love Rock n’ Roll by Joan Jett.

The success of The Runaways helped Joan Jett go solo in the late 1970’s. However, it was the band she would form after her solo career that would really help Jett take off in music history. In 1980, Jett formed the group Joan Jett & the Blackhearts. The band’s most famous song, “I Love Rock N’ Roll,” is become a staple in the history of the genre. It was released in 1981 and was the top song on the Billboard charts for seven weeks straight. It is in fact Billboard’s number 56th song of all time and was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame in 2016.

Joan Jett herself was inducted into the Rock N’ Roll Hall of Fame in 2015. Her albums have achieved either gold or platinum awards. On top of achieved monumental fame and success in the music, she is also an inspiration for other realms. She has consistently been a prominent feminist icon and animal activist throughout her life. She will forever be a symbol of Rock N’ Rock and feminine strength that helped push the fresh roots of rock music into Earth.

Joni Mitchell

Joni Mitchell was a Canadian experimental singer-songwriter who was once described as the “Yang to Bob Dylan’s Yin, equaling him in richness and profusion of imagery.” She was born on November 7, 1943, under the original name Roberta Joan Anderson, in Fort McLeod, Alberta, Canada. She studied art in her hometown until 1964 when she moved to Toronto. There she began performing at local clubs and coffeehouses, and had a brief manage to folksinger Chuck Mitchell. In 1967, Joni Mitchell relocated to New York City where she made her debut album, Songs to Seagull. Her first album was produced by David Crosby and was a massive success with much attention paid toward its maturity of lyrics.

With each following release Mitchell’s popularity and following grew. Clouds in 1969 won a Grammy for best folk performance and Blue in 1971 was her first million-selling album. Mitchell’s career has not slowed throughout her life. She has released a total of 19 studio albums and 3 live albums. She is without a doubt one of the first women in modern rock to achieve a longevity of critical recognition. She inspired countless artists including Bob Dylan, Prince, Suzanne Vega, and Alanis Morissette. She was inducted into the Rock N’ Roll hall of fame in 1997 and in 2002 won a Grammy Award for a lifetime achievement.

Click here to listen to “The Circle Game” by Joni Mitchell.

Follow along with our Daily Discovery! Click here for all activities that you can do at home.

Educational opportunities like this are supported in part by Bohemian.

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Daily Discovery: Women Who Changed the Music Industry

Post written by  Goose Seifert, Music & Sound Lab Assistant.

Daily Discovery: Women Who Changed the Music Industry

Historically, women and their contributions to music have been very overlooked in the music industry. Let’s take a look at a few women who molded various genres and eras with their music!

Ruth Brown

Ruth Brown is a singer, songwriter, and actress born in Portsmouth, Virginia in 1928. Ruth started singing in nightclubs and performing with Lucky Millinder’s orchestra in 1945, taking a different path than her church choir director father, who did not want his daughter listening to “the devil’s music.” After a disc jockey saw Ruth play with Duke Ellington, he told the higher ups at Atlantic Records what talent he had seen. Not long after, Ruth suffered from a car crash and signed to Atlantic Records while in bed at the hospital! After recovering, she released her first song, “So Long” which reached #6 on the U.S. Billboard R&B chart. Following that in 1950, Ruth peaked the charts as #1 with the new release “Teardrops from my Eyes.” After this, Ruth was acknowledged as the queen of R&B, as well as “Miss Rhythm.” Her releases afterwards continued to top the R&B charts, and they stayed up there for a while. Because of Ruth’s great success, she became a household name and was responsible for Atlantic being the foremost label of the genre.

Patsy Cline

Patsy Cline was a country singer born in Winchester, Virginia in 1932. Patsy began performing on the local radio station at age 15, and in a local band occasionally appearing on country television channels. After performing “Walkin’ After Midnight” on CBS’s Arthur Godfrey’s Talent Scouts, she had her first hit on country and pop charts, gaining national recognition. She began to work under Decca Records in 1960, which led to her first country billboard chart #1- “I Fall to Pieces” released in 1961. Next, she released “Crazy,” which also became a huge hit. Patsy also performed regularly on the Grand Ole Opry country radio broadcasts in Nashville. As her success was rising, the country music industry competed with the rock and roll industry, adopting more pop elements to appeal to more mainstream audiences. Patsy, who favored traditional country, continued to dress in western clothing and include yodeling in her music, bridging traditional country music with modern pop successfully. Patsy’s life ended suddenly in a plane crash in 1963, while she was 30 years old, however her legacy lives on, as she was the first woman inducted in the Country Music Hall of Fame, documentaries about her life have been produced, and her childhood home was turned into a museum.

Diana Ross

Diana Ross is a singer, actress, and record producer born in Detroit, Michigan in 1944. Her success emerged as lead vocalist of the Supremes, a vocal trio signed to Motown that quickly became the first U.S. group to have five songs in a row reach #1. The group went on to have 12 total chart toppers, the most billboard #1’s that an American group had in history! Around 1969, Diana left The Supremes to start a solo career, and continued her success by reaching #1 with “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough.” Following that, she had three other tracks reach #1 in the 70’s as she was also branching out and acting. In 1976, Billboard Magazine titled her as “Female Entertainer of the Century.” Diana continued to release pop records in the 80’s with a few more chart toppers, and returned to Motown for a couple records producing singles that gained international success. She sang lead on a top 75 hit for 33 consecutive years in the U.K. from 1964 to 1996. In 1993, she was declared the most successful female musician in history by the Guiness Book of World Records for her total of 70 hit singles in the Supremes and as a solo artist!

Suzi Quatro

Suzi Quatro is a musician and actress born into a musical family in Detroit, Michigan in 1950. Suzi was raised studying classical piano and percussion, and started a band with her older sister at age 14, fronting the band with vocals and bass. This band toured and released singles over a few years, until Suzi accepted a solo contract from producer Mickie Most. From there, Suzi worked with songwriters Chinn and Chapman to produce “Can the Can,” which reached #1 in 1973 and sold 2.5 million copies. She continued to release hits and was featured in the British Charts for 101 weeks between 1973 and 1980. Suzi then expanded her career into acting where she played roles in TV series and then hosted her own talk show. Throughout the 90’s, Suzi continued to release records, and began a radio career with BBC in 1999 that still continues today. In 2006, Suzi was nominated for broadcaster of the year at the Sony awards. While Suzi is successful in multiple areas of her career, she is widely recognized as the first female frontwoman to also play bass in rock and roll, paving the way for more female rock pioneers such as the Runaways and Tina Weymouth of the Talking Heads.

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Daily Discovery: Explore Origami- Fold Your Own Music Note/Descubrimiento en casa: Explora el arte del origami- cómo hacer una nota musical

Post written by Eisen Tamkun, Music Education Lead.

Daily Discovery: Explore Origami- Fold Your Own Music Note

Just like any other language, music can be written down. Instead of letters making words, musicians write down music using notes! Create your own music note using the amazing art of Origami.

Supplies:

  • 8 ½” by 11” paper
  • Clear tape
  • Coloring pencils or markers

Instructions:

  1. Start by folding the paper taco style. Be sure you press down every fold!
  2. Fold your paper again.
  3. Next, three inches from the right side make a diagonal fold across the back.
  4. . Now flip the paper around so the tab is sticking up on the left side. And make another taco fold, folding up from the bottom!
  5. Fold the tab out and refold it tucking it to the left side.
  6. Fold the two corners of the tab back.
  7. Take the top 2 ½ in. of the shaft and fold diagonal in the opposite direction of the tab. And then unfold.
  8. Now push the fold in forward splitting this new tab in half and bending back.
  9. Congrats you have made your very own music note origami! All that’s left is to color tape it up.
  10. Give your music note a good coloring on both sides. And then tape all the folds shut!

Great job! You’ve learned how to fold an origami music note. Keep reading for brief facts on Origami!

Origami- History, Facts, and Legend

Origami is the art of folding uncut pieces of paper in shapes such as birds and animals. First appearing in 17th century Japan, Origami has become a popular activity around the globe. The word is derived from ori- meaning “folded” and –kami, meaning “paper”.

There are thousands of origami creations; from mice and fish, to houses and balloons, the possibilities are practically endless! Explore the world through origami creations. Find patterns and more with a simple web search.

Probably the most famous origami sculpture is the Japanese Crane. There is a legend which states whoever folds a thousand cranes will have their heart’s desire come true. A thousand cranes is called senbazuru in Japanese. If you are feeling up to the challenge of creating a thousand cranes, or even just one, visit this website and give it a shot!

Want to download these directions? Click here for a handy PDF!

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Image Credit: Pinterest

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Traducido por Károl de Rueda y Laura Vilaret-Tuma.

Descubrimiento en casa: Explora el arte del origami- cómo hacer una nota musical

Como cualquier otro idioma, la música se puede escribir y  entender. En vez de usar letras para formar palabras, los músicos escriben notas para expresar frases musicales. Crea tu propia nota musical usando las técnicas maravillosas del origami.

Artículos necesarios:

  • Hoja de papel tamaño carta (8 ½” por 11”)
  • Cinta adhesiva transparente
  • Lápices de color o marcadores

Instrucciones:

  1. Empieza doblando el papel a la mitad, asegurándote que el doblez esté bien definido.
  2. Dobla el papel de nuevo pero a lo largo.
  3. Haz un doblez diagonal de tres pulgadas (7.5 centímetros) del lado izquierdo.
  4. Voltea la hoja de papel para que el doblez que hiciste en el paso anterior esté boca arriba al lado izquierdo. Agarra el papel desde abajo y dobla el largo otra vez a la mitad.
  5. Saca la lengüeta pequeña hacia afuera. Dóblala hacia adentro, situándola dentro de tu nota al lado izquierdo.
  6. Dobla las equinas para formar la cabeza de tu nota musical.
  7. Para formar el corchete de tu nota musical, usa la parte superior y haz un doblez en la dirección opuesta de la cabeza. Debe medir 2.5 pulgadas (6 centímetros).
  8. Por último, desdobla el corchete y empuja el doblez hacia adentro, dividiéndolo a la mitad y doblando hacia atrás.
  9. Colorea tu nota musical de cada lado. No te olvides
    pegar todos los dobleces con cinta adhesiva.

¡Buen trabajo! Ya aprendiste cómo doblar una nota musical de origami. ¡Sigue leyendo para aprender algunos datos curiosos sobre este gran arte!

Origami – Historia, datos, y leyenda

Origami es el arte de doblar retazos de papel en distintas formas como pájaros y otros animales sin cortarlos. Originando en Japón durante el siglo 17, el origami se ha vuelto una actividad practicada en varias regiones del mundo. La palabra se deriva de las raíces ori- que significa “doblado” y –kami, que significa “papel.”

Hay miles de formas que puedes crear con origami; desde ratoncitos, peces, casas hasta globos, ¡las posibilidades son infinitas! Podrías explorar el mundo a través de esta técnica. En el internet puedes encontrar infinidad de guías y plantillas para practicar.

La escultura más famosa del origami es la Grulla Japonesa. Una antigua leyenda japonesa nos dice que, si logras hacer mil grullas de origami, tu más grande deseo se cumplirá. Las mil grullas de origami se llaman senbazuru en japonés. Si quieres aprender cómo hacer una Grulla Japonesa o completar el reto de senbazuru, visita este sitio web: https://origami.me/crane/

¿Te gustaría descargar esta actividad? Haz clic aquí para obtener un archivo PDF.

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It’s National Pollinator Week! 🐝

Post written by Alexa Leinaweaver, Live Animal Husbandry Coordinator.

🐝It’s National Pollinator Week!

June 22-28, 2020, is the 13th annual National Pollinator Week!

What Are Pollinators?

Pollinators are animals that move pollen from one flower to another flower of the same species in the first step toward the plant reproducing. While pollinators are primarily insects (bees, beetles, flies, moths, butterflies), there are also some birds and small mammals that pollinate plants too.

More than 70% — and possibly as much as 90%! — of flowering plants are dependent on pollination for creating seeds and fruit. It is estimated that one out of every three bites of food you eat was made possible by animal pollinators!

Many of the animals that pollinate are in decline. Pollinator habitats are shrinking or getting destroyed so they have no space to live or feed. In addition, overuse of pesticides, environmental pollution, and climate change are all adding risks to these animals.

Pollinators in Colorado

In Colorado, we have a wide range of habitats and extreme changes in altitude – different bees will thrive in each area. Because of that variety of habitat, Colorado is home to more than 900 species of bees! There are more than 200 bees in Larimer County alone. The smallest bee in Colorado is the Miner Bee (Perdita salacis) at 3.5mm/0.1in; the largest is the Nevada Bumblebee (Bombus nevadensis) at 26.5mm/1in. Colorado bees are colorful, too! Different species may be the usual yellow and black, or range to red, orange, green, blue, or brown.

Most bees in Colorado (and the rest of the world too) are solitary bees that don’t live in a colony like the familiar honeybee. Most of these solitary bees are ground nesters, digging burrows in the soil or using abandoned rodent burrows. Some of the bees here are cavity nesters, finding holes or cavities in twigs or logs.

In Colorado, bees are responsible for pollinating 80% of the crops in our state.

In addition to bees, other pollinators in Colorado include approximately 250 species of butterfly and more than 1,000 species of moth. There are also 11 species of hummingbird that migrate through the state from April through September.

How can you help pollinators?

Learn more about the pollinators in the space where you live. Spend some time outside and observe the animals that are visiting your garden. What kinds of animals do you see? What colors are they? How do they behave as they visit flowers?

Create good habitats for pollinators around your home. Whether you have acres of land or just a window box, you can help pollinators by offering them food and shelter. Plant a variety of flowering plants (preferably native – CSU has a great example list of native plants for pollinators) that offer food and nesting space. Provide several different kinds of blooming plants near each other, and use plants that have different bloom times, so that flowers are available to pollinators from early spring through late fall. Plant in sunny locations that are protected from the wind.

Don’t “clean up” your yard in the fall. Leave all the dormant or dead plants alone rather than trimming them back for the winter season — cavity nesting bees and other pollinating insects will use them as a safe home during the cold weather. Leave some leaf litter around for butterflies and moths to use as insulation over the winter, rather than raking it all up and dumping it in the landfill. If you can include materials in your yard such as logs or wood nesting blocks, you provide space for species that nest in wood to survive the snow. Leave some of the ground uncovered (i.e. don’t put mulch everywhere) for the native bees that nest in the bare dirt for the winter.

Reduce use of chemicals for controlling weeds and pests, as these can hurt or kill beneficial pollinators as well.

Protect natural habitat.

 Share what you know. Talk to your friends and family about what you have learned about pollinators and how and why you are helping them. Talk to your local and state government about how important it is to protect pollinators.

 

 

 

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