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When I go to the library, I browse the children's section as well as the adult section because let's face it, children's books are usually funnier, more interesting, better written, and less pretentious with better pictures. Since this year marks the 100th anniversary of World War I, numerous books (for children and adults) have been written. One day I saw a book displayed in the children's section. I think it was World War I for Kids: A History with 21 Activities by R. Kent Rasmussen. I looked through it a little and I must say, based on what I saw, that it's age-appropriate and informative. It also has a number of activities, so it would be a good book for teachers to use to teach their young charges about the Great War.
I was looking through the section on gas warfare when I saw something that made me think, "Well, that's different..." It was instructions on how to make a gas mask out of light cardboard and other materials. I know why it was there, but I still found it a little unsettling. I put the book back on the display and went on my way, but the next time I was there I found the book again, photocopied the page in question, returned the book to the display, went home, and made my own mask. I lacked a couple of the materials (or just plain didn't want to use them for this), but I easily found substitutions. Here it is!
Let me tell you, after a few seconds of wearing it, my forehead started to feel sweaty (from the cellophane covering the eye holes). The mask does its purpose, which is to give the wearer a little taste of what it was like for those poor souls in the trenches, wearing their masks constantly for fear of dying horribly. I wore a hat in honor of my friend Tyberzannisultra and his Costume Contest creation, Praecognitus (the gentleman in black).
Check out this book if you want an appropriate and interactive book to teach the kiddies about the First World War (or if you like to make your own protective masks. I don't judge ;-)).