As a university professor, the challenges of moving to virtual classes were not far behind even though I had just received a certification in virtual distance education. During this semester I found myself teaching a course on contemporary models of psychotherapy. Two weeks after the quarantine began, I was scheduled to teach a unit on expressive therapies.
I was thinking about how to translate a dynamic application in the classroom into a virtual activity. At that moment it occurred to me, rather than giving a class, my students needed that space to process the new reality of COVID-19. So, not only did I give a virtual class on expressive therapies, but I also converted the space into an art therapy live application as well.
The goal was that each of them could express themselves from their homes through four drawings, allowing creativity to flow and emphasizing the process, not the result. By discussing the theories, they analyzed the meaning of their art, which in turn promoted laughter and participation among them. Also, the group discussions allowed them to find new meanings, named their concerns, and saw the positive side of it all. But more importantly, it allowed them a space to express and reflect on their feelings about everything we are experiencing and how we can count on this tool, not only for themselves but also for their professional work. Curiously, there were repeated drawings, symbols, and shapes between them (i.e. spirals). In the end, they told me that this had been the best class they have had online.
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