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Nursing and Nurturing

Platypus Media, Capitol Hill’s award-winning publisher of books for children and their families, has added two new titles to their line. Part of their Beginnings collection designed to pique scientific curiosity and foster empathy, these warmly illustrated books focus on how a wide range of mammals, including humans, care for their young. Both books are bilingual, with Spanish text appearing alongside the English.

“Cuddled and Carried” (ages 1-5), with text by Dia L. Michels and illustrations by Mike Speiser, shows a variety of animal parents—from elephants and polar bears to koalas and penguins—grooming, snuggling, nurturing, and protecting their babies. Softly rendered graphics place the animals in their natural habitats of savannah, ice, meadow and, in the case of the human family, lined up lovingly on a sofa.

“Babies Nurse” (ages 4-7), with rhyming text by Phoebe Fox, describes babies being nurtured by mother seals, pandas, bats, dolphins, and other nursing mammals. The color-washed paintings by Phoebe’s father-in-law and former NBA player Jim Fox perfectly complement her tender poems: “Puppies nurse, / in a golden heap, / snuggled up, / they fall asleep.”

These gentle books beg to be read aloud with a little one in your lap, but they offer more than mere bedtime stories. Designed to encourage a lifelong passion for learning, they also include supplemental information about the animals pictured as well as suggestions for talking with children about the natural world. Additional educational materials are available free of charge at PlatypusMedia.com.

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