COVID-19 is a big deal, but with all that adults have to worry about, it’s easy to overlook the pandemic’s impact on children. This book provides a great way for parents and caregivers to introduce and reinforce the importance of safety measures to children, while giving kids the opportunity to ask questions and share their feelings. Embracing the latest science, The Teensy Weensy Virus pairs simple, kid-friendly explanations with bright, colorful illustrations, while offering additional resources for adults and an informative song to help lighten the mood as families engage with this serious topic
Why Did I Write The Teensy Weensy Virus?
On March 13, 2020, my husband and I realized we needed to quarantine. At that time, I was 67 and he was 71. We had almost no knowledge at that time how COVID-19 was transmitted. We understood then that the virus might remain on surfaces for up to three days.
Our mail went on the floor of the dining room, retrieved with gloves and a mask, waiting for three days before opening it! We did not go out for weeks; fortunately, we had just gone to the grocery store. Later, we only picked up our groceries at the curb.
Talking with children about Covid
Yes, with time, things improved. But as I lay down to go to sleep in July, I longed to hug my precious two-year-old grandson. I so desperately missed seeing and hugging him (and my other grandchildren as well). We had visited a couple of times with masks on, at a distance, but I just could not bear to do that, as he would likely run to me to hug me and was I to reject him physically? My heart broke. So, that night I realized, “If I just had a good book to read to him; to start explaining to him at such a young age, with pictures, why we had to stay apart?”
Was there such a book? I needed to write one. It had to be completely scientific with appropriate references for parents and caregivers. As a retired nurse practitioner, I would rely on the CDC for information. (I had used their weekly newsletter throughout my career). The concept was to simply tell preschoolers how to stay safe! And to also allow them an opportunity to express their feelings elicited by all the changes and emotions around them. Then – it needed something to end on a light note. So – I immediately thought of the “Itsy Bitsy Spider” for a melody; I wrote the lyrics with some help from The Gregory Brothers. The song reinforced the safety measures and was just fun and the hand gestures reinforced everything.
The book has been a success – and translations are on their way. I am blessed that I have been able to do this; it is a global mission for me. We need to “beat” this horrific virus, and we all must do it together.
Sherri L. Rose
MSN, PNP, FNP, HPN (Retired)
Author/Creator of The Teensy Weensy Virus Book and Song for Preschoolers
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