When Mrs. Seahorse lays her eggs, she does it on Mr. Seahorse's belly! She knows he will take good care of them. While he swims waiting for the eggs to hatch, he meets other underwater fathers caring for their babies. Now Eric Carle's heart-warming New York Times bestseller is finally available in a board book edition, complete with the clear "peek-a-boo" pages that made the original such a hit. Brimming with bright, colorful sea life, this new board book will be irresistible to young children everywhere.
Written by Eric Carle
Despite the negative commentary from some reviewers, I say the real truth comes in the "true raters"--the children!! My 2+ yr old daughter was given this book as a gift (that she picked out in the bookstore). She absolutely loves it, and in the month that we've had it, we've read it nearly 50 times at her request. She loves the colors and the transparency overlays, and definitely points out the "daddy" seahorse (as well as the "mommy") every time we read it together. Her favorite page is the last one as Mr. Seahorse releases his babies with love and points out that it's time for the little ones to be on their own. She simply adores this book!
Given the commentary of many of the reviewers on the father fish "babysitting" the baby fish....If you do look to nature, many animals (and many male animals) do abandon their offspring...so I saw the book more as personifying family in nature rather than making a sexist commentary on fatherhood, patriarchal society, or gender roles in parenting.
Likewise, with older children, it could be a great springboard for discussions on responsibility and caring. I plan to use it in this manner in my 3rd grade class this year. It's at this point a person could discuss the phrasing, and talk about the parental role--moms and dads both babysit at times while the other does an errand...and "babysit" is a term children understand.
Perhaps at times, we can get so caught up in being politically correct, that we miss the forest through the trees, or miss a great book on an over-exaggerated technicality that's taken too seriously.