A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this book.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that this straightforward, approachable sex-ed follow-up to It's Not the Stork is for older kids and digs into more topics that kids are bound to be hearing about as tweens -- which means you'll probably want to spend even more time previewing so you're ready to relay your feelings on some of the tougher topics. These include different kinds of families and love (with terms "homosexuality" and "heterosexuality" explained), HIV/AIDS, condoms and other birth control, masturbation, and a more detailed discussion of what sexual abuse is. The bird and bee cartoon characters that appear throughout and comment on the topics presented focus on two perspectives: a child who may be embarrassed to talk about such things and a child who doesn't understand why anyone would want to talk about them.
- Parents say
- Kids say
What's the story?
Starting with a chapter called "Curious? Embarrassed? Confused?" and explaining to kids that "it's perfectly normal" to feel that way about where babies come from, even if they think they know a few things already, the book then launches into all the big sex-ed questions: where babies come from, how boys and girls are the same and different and what male and female sexual organs actually do, how the sperm gets to its destination, what pregnancy and birth is like, and even the basics on chromosomes and genes. It also covers topics like different kinds of love (including homosexual love), different kinds of families, adoption, HIV/AIDS, birth control, what touches are "okay" and "not okay" and how to tell someone about "not okay" touches, and why growing up is "so amazing."
Is it any good?
Just like It's Not the Stork, this book does what it sets out to do in a very straightforward manner that all kids will appreciate -- they're not talked down to for a second. The book covers even more ground and gets where tweens probably are in their knowledge about such things -- they've gathered a few facts and some half-truths and some things that aren't so true and are embarrassed to admit that they can't tell the difference -- with some kids even deciding that they don't want to really know at all and what's the fuss all about anyway? The bird and bee cartoon characters that are present throughout do a good job of expressing both common kid viewpoints, and kids' reactions to these characters will help parents start good conversations with kids about what they're thinking. If you're only looking to discuss certain topics at certain times, the table of contents lays out each section very clearly.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about any questions they may have after sharing this book. What did you know already? What do you want to know more about?
Talk about why these topics can be hard to talk about. What do kids find embarrassing? What do parents find embarrassing? Are you less embarrassed now that you know the facts?