Harvard seventh-grader illustrates book on how kids can handle COVID-19 pandemic stress

Harvard seventh grader illustrates book on how kids can handle COVID-19 pandemic stress

Harvard, Mass. — Twelve-year-old Caroline Charland loves drawing and she spends hours each day sketching at her desk.

She is talented, but admits, she was floored when a friend of her mother asked her to illustrate a children’s book on the pandemic.

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“A surprise is probably an understatement,” Charland said.

The 7th-grader, from the town of Harvard, illustrated the Insanely Awesome Pandemic Playbook.

Charland said she sketched about 100 drawings for the book, which is geared towards pre-teens.

Twelve-year-old Caroline Charland from Harvard, Mass. illustrated "The Insanely Awesome Pandemic Playbook" to help pre-teens deal with COVID-19 pandemic stress.
Twelve-year-old Caroline Charland from Harvard, Mass. illustrated "The Insanely Awesome Pandemic Playbook" to help pre-teens deal with COVID-19 pandemic stress. (Charland Family)

“None of us adults and children alike have gone through anything like this, so the book is a critical aspect of that. We need a helping hand, sorting out our emotions during the pandemic and the book does it in a funny way so kids won’t feel like they’re in school, but they are learning important lessons in a humorous manner,” she said.

The book is meant to educate kids about keeping up with their mental health, using screens wisely, and staying connected with friends and family during the pandemic. All in a fun way.

One of the co-authors is Dr. Elizabeth Englander, a psychologist from Bridgewater State University. She said having Caroline illustrate the book, gives it a nice perspective.

“You know, it kind of brings the book altogether because her illustrations are obviously kid friendly and she thinks they’re funny and cool and they make the whole topic accessible,” Englander said.

A sequel to the book will be published in the spring and Caroline has already been asked to illustrate it.

The e-book version of the Insanely Awesome Pandemic Playbook is free on Amazon on January 11th and 12th.

Twelve-year-old Caroline Charland from Harvard, Mass. illustrated "The Insanely Awesome Pandemic Playbook" to help pre-teens deal with COVID-19 pandemic stress.
Twelve-year-old Caroline Charland from Harvard, Mass. illustrated "The Insanely Awesome Pandemic Playbook" to help pre-teens deal with COVID-19 pandemic stress. (Charland Family)

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