Keisha Cameron helps children and families with Ayedin Learns series
When Keisha Cameron saw her son making remarkable strides with his learning capabilities, her maternal instinct merged with her love for literature, and she decided to pen his discoveries through thrilling adventures. His father, Akeem Asir, came along for the ride and the Ayedin Learns series was born. She hopes that the books will assist other children and parents, as well.
Cameron told The Sunday Gleaner, “Ayedin Learns are books surrounding a Jamaican boy. They highlight various lessons that he is taught and learns to do on his own.”
She aims to capture Ayedin’s moments of learning, and since she believes that it takes a village to raise a child, share with others.
She is enthused about passing down her love for reading to her offspring and the future generation. “Ever since I was young, I have always been interested in reading,” she highlighted.
Her need for nurturing young minds with knowledge and adventure began when she became a mother. When she had her son, ideas started swirling around about how she would pass on golden nuggets that would make him an upstanding young man.
With the help of Ayedin, Akeem, and her natural writing skills, Cameron was able to complete the books from concept to publishing in a matter of two months. “Akeem is the co-author of the second book. We thought it important to ensure that all parents were represented as this shows the benefit of a child being grown by a community.”
The first book was officially released in September of 2021 and the second, nine months later, in June of 2022 - a beautiful labour of love in between. The reception thus far, she said, has been amazing.
“Persons have been really supportive by purchasing online and physically. Quite a number of my friends and family members have both copies. I get gratification when a parent says to me, ‘Keisha, I love the book, I have to read it to my son every night, because that’s all he wants to read,’ knowing this isn’t a fairy tale or a nursery rhyme book,” she declared.
Equally excited is Ayedin to have his lessons documented in such a magical light. It adds as reinforcement that his biggest reward for learning and doing well is seeing his image and stories in print and digital format. “He loves the series. He is always saying, ‘That’s my book’ or ‘That’s me, that’s Ayedin’,” she added.
As a parent, Cameron can connect with others walking in similar nurturing footsteps through this literary platform. Seeing firsthand how parenting can break or make a child and greatly impact which direction they go when they get older, she would like to affect change in the generations to come.
“One of the best ways I can do that is not only by teaching my child the right way, but also spreading those messages in an educational, yet fun way,” the author revealed.
She hopes to expand her readership all across the world and inspire more parents to groom their children to be great individuals, “imparting and reinforcing positive teaching moments”. “We want to keep certain principles alive in our children with the hope that they will pass on those same principles to their children,” she said.
Cameron is looking forward to launching yet another book next year. And plans are already under way to also release the Jamaica Sign Language version of the Ayedin Learns.
When she isn’t writing, Cameron is busy doing her nine-to-five as a research analyst at Victoria Mutual Building Society.
Her advice to aspiring authors is to take that leap of faith and write their first sentence. “If you have the idea, write notes in a notepad. I wrote an email to myself on April 15, 2019, and told myself to write a children’s book. I forgot that email and found it two days before I did the official launch of the Ayedin Learns series.” That’s the true power of dreams, passion, and affirmative words of action.