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The animal kingdom offers a special fascination for children because so many of the cozy rituals they share at home are echoed in nature. All mammal mothers feed, protect, and teach their young -- tasks that often challenge their own needs for survival. With beautiful illustrations and inventive text, this fascinating introduction reveals how fourteen mammal babies travel the path from helpless infant to self-sufficient adults.
If My Mom Were a Platypus: Mammal Babies and Their Mothers is as engaging visually as it is verbally. Designed for kids 8-12 as an independent reader, it is purchased routinely for younger kids as a read-aloud, by high school teachers as a biological narrative, and by adults as a gift for mothers and sisters.
This science-though-literature book aligns with the Next Generation Science Standards and the Common Core State Standards.
"I am blown away by this book! This is one of the most engaging nonfiction books I have ever read."
- Sonya Smith, Science Coordinator, Miss. State, MS
"The cycle of life goes from conception to pregnancy to birth to lactation to maturity to death. The universality of the life cycle is beautifully captured in this stunning book."
- Ruth Lawrence, MD, Author Breastfeeding: A Guide for the
Medical Profession University of Rochester Medical School,
"An excellent reference book for the elementary classroom. I highly recommend this book!"
-Lori Cirucci, NSTA Recommends
Download supplemental material:
- Activity Guide
- Hands-On Guide to Science Demonstrations
- Mammal Biodiversity Table
- Texas Standards and Articulations
Awards and Accolades
- Book of the Year Award, Creative Child Magazine
- Finalist, USA Best Book Awards
- NSTA Recommends
- Seal of Approval, Young Voices Foundation
- Honorable Mention, Animals, Animals, Animals, 2013 Book Festival
Click to see:
- A sample page
- See the Examiner's review!
- Did you miss the Born to Be Breastfed interview in May Check it out here! Radio host Maria Biacuzzo interviews Dia Michels, author of If My Mom Were a Platypus: Mammal Babies and Their Mothers. On the show, they talk about the book, mammals, and breastfeeding in both the animal and human worlds.
Ages 4-8 as a Read-a-Loud
Ages 8-12 as an Independent Reader (Grades 3-6)
64 pages, Full Color
ISBN 13: 978-1-938492-11-2 ISBN 10: 1-9384921-1-0
7" x 10"
Dia L. Michels is an award-winning internationally published science and parenting writer, she is the author or editor of over a dozen books for both children and adults. Her books have been translated into Spanish, Dutch, Hebrew, Chinese, and Korean. A popular speaker, she lectures frequently at conferences, universities, libraries, and schools around the country. She teaches classes on mammal reproduction and lactation at children’s and science museums around the U.S. and is a commentator for Public Radio, International. Her articles have been published in People, Parenting, Mothering, Parents, Baby Talk, Family Fun, Nurturing, and the Washington Post. She lives in the Capitol Hill neighborhood of Washington, DC, with her husband, Tony Gualtieri, their three children, and four cats and a dog. She can be reached at Dia@PlatypusMedia.com.
Andrew Barthelmes, illustrator of If My Mom Were a Platypus, and designer of I Was Born to Be a Brother and many other projects, is a New York based illustrator and graphic designer. A graduate of The School of Visual Arts, his illustrations have appeared in publications such as The New Yorker, Ladies' Home Journal, Street & Smith's Sports, and The Wall Street Journal. In addition to the Platypus book, he also illustrated Herman the Loudmouth. He has been a children's book designer for Random House, Inc. and is currently creating new children's books for Reader's Digest. He lives in Peekskill, NY with his wife Barbara, and new baby, Julia.