Most children, sooner rather than later, ask questions such as, How are babies made? How was I made? Where do I come from? How did you make me? These questions usually catch us off guard and answering them correctly but in an age appropriate way can be challenging. I have been there as a parent! I also have been there as a teacher, although now a days I navigate this topic with ease as I am a Human Sexuality trained and experienced educator. Here are my 4 top suggestions for you!
Be concise. Children don’t want a sophisticated answer, trust me. They want a simple and short answer. Practice (before it happens) one or two sentences on how to answer how babies are made.
Be correct. Nothing is more detrimental to our children’s education than to provide incorrect scientific information. Use correct names, connect to the real world, and stay concise.
Be sincere. By being sincere you are building trust with the children. An adult that is sincere will say to a child “I don’t know the answer, but lets find out together.” or will say, “Let me think about your question, and I’ll answer later.”
Carry through. If you said to a child that you were going to respond to their question later, do so. Seriously!
Educate yourself. Don’t assume that because you are a parent you have the right answers. We all make mistakes! Read books from experts and enact their recommendations-they have been doing this for years.
Use children’s books. Good books are our best ally. A book can initiate a difficult conversation, can guide a conversation, or it can help us answer children’s questions.
Check out this book for answering “What makes a baby?” written by Cory Silverberg and illustrated by Fiona Smyth. The book is great for Pk-1st grade because it is concise, clear, and age appropriate for young learners. However, it is a great conversation started for engaging older children too.
For example, this illustration in the book helps children know that sex cells have genetic information (DNA) that make humans, human. Yet, it is simplified in a way that a young child can understand.
The book is also INCLUSIVE. Yes, thank you Silverberg! This book is good for any family regardless of the composition. Here is some evidence.
Finally, the book acknowledges families and most of all, love. See?
Visit my Amazon store to get this book at no extra cost to you!