I wrote and illustrated a book about the kids a few months ago. Kairo recently regained interest in seeing himself inside of the story, “Back to Square One.” I would provide a summary, but I just decided to paste the entire thing below.
The story has three goals. I wanted to teach: 1) Shapes, 2) Colors, and 3) Emotions. Kairo focuses on the emotions.
Don’t judge me, though. It has some intense vocabulary for toddlers, which was my intent. When I wrote it, Kairo was in love with this story called “The Different Dragon.” The language was outrageous, but he loved it. Now, he reads this story with similar interest.
We have the physical copy, but you can enjoy the digital version (with several corrected mistakes…cough).
Back to Square One
Square, Kairo, and Kalel
Kairo was a curious little boy that enjoyed a good adventure. He had a baby brother named Kalel that was always ready for a new experience.
They loved visiting their friend, Square, because he taught them many things, like trust and the power of gravity. Of course, Kairo and Kalel liked to learn things the hard way, but Square did not mind.
Square loved spending time with Kairo and Kalel because they were always trying something new.
Square or Circle
Square wanted to try something new too. He wanted to change his shape.
He said, “I have always wanted to be a circle. They have nice curves, and they are round, unlike me. I think you would like me better if I weren’t so plain and pointy.”
Kairo and Kalel liked Square just fine, but they would do anything to help their friend.
The boys went to work immediately. Kairo attached a rope to one of Square’s sides, and Kalel jumped into his big boy steam engine. They worked together, pulling Square until he began to lean.
Square changed quickly. The change was so sudden that it scared him. He turned pink and began to shout, “Please stop! Pulling one side will not work.”
He was right. By pulling one side, Kairo and Kalel had turned their friend into a rhombus.
Taking Square’s advice, the boys attached ropes to opposite sides.
This time, they pulled away from one another until Square began to stretch further and further apart.
This made Square sad. He was so sad that he turned blue.
“Oh my gosh. Oh my gosh,” Square shrieked. “Like seriously, guys! I’m going to cry.”
He was already crying.
Kairo and Kalel thought for a moment.
They turned their friend into a rectangle.
After two tries, Kairo and Kalel had only made matters worse, so they developed a more devious plan. (In all fairness, being devious was not their intent).
Using fire and steel found all throughout their parents’ home, the brothers forged giant hammers. Armed with the proper tools, they initiated the next phase of their plans.
Together, Kairo and Kalel successfully removed one of Square’s edges. They may have turned Square into a circle if he allowed them to continue, but Square was not happy with this method at all. In fact, he was a little angry.
Square turned red and hollered, “Owie! This will not work.”
Kairo and Kalel disagreed. They thought the hammers would work just fine, but they had to stop. Because their work was incomplete, their friend had become a triangle.
Kairo and Kalel tried everything, but nothing seemed to work. Even with all of their efforts, the brothers had only turned their friend into an octagon.
This was the closest shape that they had gotten to a circle all day, but Square had more sides and more points than ever before.
At the end of a very long day, Square was green, he looked sick, and he felt tired. No matter how hard he tried, Square could not bring himself to smile.
He began to worry. Speaking to himself, he muttered, “This will not work. If I do not cheer up soon, my friends will go away. They will not play with a sickly, green octagon.”
Unfortunately, Square was too tired to smile. As his eyes slowly began to close, he worried that his friends would disappear by the morning.
However, Kairo and Kalel did not go away because they wanted to make their friend feel better.
The brothers developed a plan. They scribbled blueprints on paper. To the average person, their writings may have seemed pointless, but Kairo and Kalel shared a common vision.
Shape Shifting Ninjas
All night, while Square was asleep, Kairo and Kalel worked like ninjas. They used all of the skills that they had learned to change their friend.
Back to Square
The next morning, Square discovered that he had turned back into a square. However, he was not plain. All of his colors and emotions were showing.
Square said, “Did you guys turn me back into a square because I was scared, sad, angry, and sick? Was it because you did not like me when I changed?”
Kairo said, “No. We liked all of your shapes and colors. We like you no matter how you look or how you act. We had so much fun that we wanted to try again.”
But before they could start again, the brothers fell asleep.
While they slept, Square did not think much about becoming a circle. He thought about how Kairo and Kalel made him feel.
Square was happy.
It’s a long story. But if you managed to read the entire thing, let me know your thoughts in the comments.