This new, educational, decidedly offbeat, multicultural activity book takes a creative visual approach to addressing such concerns as safe internet use, pollution, and nutrition with an edgy, alternative art style (reminiscent at times of such surreal cartoon offerings as Adventure Time and Gumball), created by artists and graphic designers from around the globe. At the website, Eyeyah creators state that they intend to nurture “creative thinking, visual literacy, and problem solving” through a thematic approach “built around 4 content pillars: Observation, interactive, visual learning & challenges.”
The first issue welcomed readers to the “wild, wild web,” home to “weirdos, viruses, cookies & robots,” with the warning to “keep your mind sharp and your eyes open.” Among the activities, wildly illustrated on heavy stock paper, were a themed word search, a double-page maze, a connect-the-dots drawing, a draw-your-own emoji page, searches for hidden “cookies” and e-waste, and pages to color. Visual representations of screen use abuse—family members laser-focused on their individual phones at dinner, the signs of internet addiction, a scary, cyber-stalking monster sitting at a computer typing, “Hi! I’m Suzie”—definitely make an impact. Other Eyeyah! issues were created around trash, food (and healthy and unhealthy eating); life in and on the ocean and the effects of global littering. The magazine directs users to its website for answers to content-related questions posed in each issue; a welcome further step would be to advise the importance of independently verifying information.
Lynne Heffley ©2020 Parents’ Choice
A freelance writer and editor for the arts and non-profit organizations, Lynne is a former staff writer for the Los Angeles Times, where she established the paper’s first weekly children’s arts and entertainment beat.