We've been wearing masks over here in Vietnam pretty much constantly since February 2020. All our students from 3 year olds to 18 year olds have been wearing them in school without any problems because they understand it's not just for their safety, but that of their friends too. There's been much discussion, with the little ones especially, about emotions during this time, and they were the ones who came up with the idea that their eyes could show us how they were feeling. Out of the mouths of babes. . . . So here is the story sparked by those discussions with concept art by my very talented daughter Anisha.
Moon wears a unicorn mask because unicorns are unique and special just like Moon.
Hasib wears a puppy dog mask because puppies are playful and friendly just like Hasib.
Hai Lan wears a Spiderman mask because superheroes help protect people just like Hai Lan.
Andy wears a dragon mask because dragons are strong and brave just like Andy.
Katie wears a panda mask because pandas are thoughtful and gentle just like Katie.
We wear our special masks because they help stop us from sharing our sneezes and coughs.
But wearing our masks doesn’t mean we can’t share our feelings.
We do that through our eyes.
When Moon is happy, her eyes twinkle like the stars on a rainbow unicorn.
When Hasib is feeling playful, his eyes shine like a puppy waiting for a game of fetch.
When Hai Lan is surprised, her eyes open really wide, just like when a superhero saves you.
When Andy is brave, his eyes look fierce like a knight that has fought many dragons.
When Katie is gentle, her eyes sparkle with kindness.
Our masks help protect us, but our eyes will twinkle, shine, sparkle and smile to let you know that we are okay.
Through Our Eyes: A Pandemic Story © Kerry Gittins 2021. All Rights Reserved.
With all that has been happening in the world this past year, I felt it important to write something to help children understand that it is okay to have strong emotional reactions to situations. This book, targeted at children aged 2 to 6 years old, celebrates and promotes diversity with every character and emotion represented by a different colour and gender. The final page would have each character joined together making a wonderful rainbow.
I'm not an illustrator but at least that's how I see it in my mind!
The Colour of Me by Kerry Gittins
Sometimes I feel mad.
When I’m mad I am red.
Sometimes I feel happy.
When I’m happy I am yellow.
Sometimes I feel cuddly.
When I’m cuddly I am pink.
Sometimes I feel calm.
When I’m calm I am green.
Sometimes I am brave.
When I’m brave I am purple.
Sometimes I feel confused.
When I’m confused I am orange.
Sometimes I feel sad.
When I’m sad I am blue.
Sometimes I can feel all those feelings in just one day.
When that happens I am a rainbow.
The Colour Of Me © Kerry Gittins 2020. All Rights Reserved.