Giant wearable baby head, huge randoseru backpack part of empathy-boosting art exhibit in Japan

Would you appreciate being told “Go outside and play!” after carrying an 18.9-kilogram (41,7-pound) backpack on your commute?

Everyone who’s an adult was once a kid, but the process of growing up happens so gradually that sometimes it’s hard to remember what your daily life used to be like. Just because the passage of time can dull our memories doesn’t mean we should let it diminish our compassion, though, and an exhibition currently going on in Japan wants to remind people that being a kid isn’t always as easy and carefree as it may seem from our adult point of view.

The Kids’ Perspective Exhibition is currently going on at Itochu SDGs Studio in Tokyo’s Aoyama district, made up of interactive art experiences designed to help adults experience aspects of children’s daily lives, starting with Baby Head. Babies’ heads make up a much larger proportion of their total body weight, and if you applied the same scale to an adult, your head would weigh around 21 kilograms (46.3 pounds). The weighted Baby Head headpiece lets you feel what that’s like, and does a lot to explain why young kids may have a tough time sitting still or stumble in unexpected places.

Then there’s the Baby Voice, a mask-like apparatus that changes the words you speak into cries and gurgles, to promote empathy with children who haven’t yet acquired much in the way of vocabulary or other language skills but are still trying to make their needs and emotions understood.

2-Year-Old’s Breakfast scales tableware, and a carton of milk, up to the relative size those items are for a kid of that age, to show that spilled milk isn’t always a result of not being careful enough, but sometimes of the greater degree of difficulty pouring a cup is for little hands.

Speaking of using a delicate touch in disciplining young kids, the 4-Meter Adults VR experience demonstrates how, from a little kid’s perspective, getting yelled at by Mom and Dad feels like being berated by four-meter (13.1-foot) tall giants, so keeping your tone of voice calm and controlled is important, since your physical stature is already intimidating enough.

Adult Randoseru shows that as adorable as the backpacks Japanese elementary schools kids carry may be, they’re also very heavy. Scaled up to adult size, it’s equivalent to carrying an 18.9-kilogram (41,7-pound) bookbag, and you can try one on to give yourself something to think about if you’re tempted to click your tongue at a kid for wanting to sit on the sofa and relax rather than going outside to play after lugging their randoseru home from school.

The Kids’ Perspective Exhibition runs until September 19.

Exhibit information
Kids’ Perspective Exhibition / こどもの視点ラボ
Venue: Itochu SDGs Studio
Address: Tokyo-to, Minato-ku, Kitaaoyama 2-3-1 Itochu Garden basement level 1
東京都港区北青山2—3—1 Itochu Garden B1F
Open 11 a.m.-6 p.m.
Runs until September 19
Admission free
Website

Related: Kids’ Perspective Exhibition website
Source, images: PR Times
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