Sunday, November 22, 2009

Review: God Made Your Body and How God Makes Babies by Jim Burns

genre: sex education for young children
source: the publisher

Dreaklock girl is the one who gave me the tip on these books, so thanks for that!

These two books are designed for parents to read to their young children, as a springboard to a discussion about our bodies and how babies are made. I'm a big proponent of teaching your children these concepts BEFORE friends or neighbors or the TV clue them in. Especially as a Christian, I wanted to teach these ideas within the framework of God's plan for us.

I read the one for younger children, God Made Your Body, to my nearly 7 year old son, and this was our first conversation beyond body part identification. The writing is so friendly and mild, talking simply about the differences between boys and girls and how both of their parts are needed to make a baby. The text doesn't actually use the word "sex" in this book (it says "making love.") But it really did lay all the most important concepts out there in a lovely and God-centered way, which I really liked. Actually, it was perfect for him and I. He asked some questions and got a bit grossed out but I think came away with a great foundation. And now he knows that he can ask me if he has more questions on the subject. We'll read the next book together also, probably next year when he turns 8 or sooner if he has more specific questions.

I asked my 9 1/2 year old if she wanted to read How God Makes Babies to herself or if she wanted me to read it to her, and she opted for me to read it out loud. She and I have had multiple conversations about this subject before, due mostly to questions prompted by stuff she's heard in the media. But even if we hadn't, this would've also been a great place to start. It's respectful and succinct, with more detail than God Made Your Body. I appreciated that when it talks about what actually happens in the act, God is a part of it:

"One of God's great ideas for a husband and wife was to make a way for them to join their bodies together...They get as close as two people can get. It's called making love or having sex. It's something that God created just for a husband and wife to enjoy when they are alone together..." and later in the text it says specifically what happens. She and I stopped multiple times in our reading to discuss the ideas and so she could relate it to our own lives (my sister is pregnant and I had a recently had a ruptured ectopic pregnancy - and she also has heard about teenagers having babies before they get married). The sequence flowed just right for us.

As a parent, these books are a blessing, especially if you are uncomfortable talking about the subject - just reading the words might be the easiest way for you to bring this subject up with your children, and you'll be surprised by how much easier it gets to talk about it, once you've started. I really do believe that our children deserve to learn the truth about this subject from us as parents, so that we can honestly answer their questions and teach them how to make decisions that will will hopefully help them be happier when they are older.


Heather said...

I read Dreadlock Girl's review, and yours has added to my excitement for these books. It sounds like they really fill a gap in the literature. Definitely going on my wishlist!

Deb said...

thanks SO MUCH, corinne! i've been reading a lot of books on the subject lately because it's about time for us to have a talk too, but i hadn't found anything i really liked. i'm definitely going to check these out.

i did like the eyre's book for parents on how to go about it and when. they, of course, go all out in making the talk a big deal, but still some good ideas. have you read it?

bethany (dreadlock girl) said...

Great review!!! I (as you know) love these books too. I am always glad when I recommend a book and people love it as much as I did.

Anonymous said...

All should read the children's book HOW BABIES ARE MADE, Time Life Books and Little Brown, meant for parents and other caregivers to read with their 4-8 year old. The best of the lot.

Fisher Crew said...

Thanks Corinne! I ordered both of them off of Amazon. I have been needing to have "the talk" with Paige. Since she is the same age as Sheely I am happy you've found a book that is deemed appropriate for our faith.

Dim Sum, Bagels, and Crawfish said...

Glad to see this review because I have been searching for something like this for our family. Would they work for a Jewish family as well?

Veens said...

I know I would want these books too!!! This sounds really good!

shamers said...

My whole book group will be visiting this post in the next couple of days. :) We had a discussion about this at our last meeting and I remembered having read this post and I sent them all the link yesterday. So if you have a giant increase in traffic, you can thank me.

And I thank you for this blog. I love reading your reviews! :)

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