This summer, CALI published what we believe to be the first Coloring Book for Legal Education in the eLangdell Press – “What Color is Your C.F.R.?” by Elizabeth Gotauco, Nicole Dyszlewski and Raquel M. Ortiz. It can be downloaded as PDF for free or you can purchase a paper copy here, (which makes it easier to color) here for $3.78 + shipping.
This is a coloring book for adult law students with the goal of experimenting with the new trend in adult coloring books that purport to help deal with anxiety and stress.
Law school can be stressful. What an obvious and uncomplicated statement! Coloring has been found to help calm the mind and even to increase focus.
I will admit to being skeptical when the authors first proposed this book to CALI, but I talked to people who have actually used them and read dozens of articles (just Google “adult coloring books” – turn on “safe search” if you fear what that might retrieve) and you will find that this is a BIG DEAL. I urge you to read a few articles and see for yourself. It’s not for everyone, but the benefits are real.
CALI has always been about exploring new ideas and technologies. By publishing this book, we can introduce an innovative and potentially useful idea to our membership and law students. The PDF can be printed for free under our Creative Commons license or students can purchase a paperback version.
The legal educational angle is intriguing to me as well. The subject of the drawings are legal research resources and images. Most adult coloring books are designs, patterns and mandalas, but there are books covering all kinds of topics including a Ruth Bader Ginsburg-themed coloring book. The authors wanted to tap into the positive aspects of coloring and remain linked to their educational mission. We hope that the combination results in a fresh viewpoint on the stress of studying the law. Perhaps its just a calming diversion. Either way, it’s a deeply personal experience like meditation or yoga.
I would love to hear about your experiences with this resource. My email is firstname.lastname@example.org. This is an experiment and we are in uncharted territory and so are open to learn as we go.