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Contemplating Your Bellybutton (My Body Science) Hardcover – October 1, 1995

4.5 out of 5 stars 15 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Kindergarten-Grade 2?This book is crude and unsettling. While its main focus is on the origin of the bellybutton, it also includes such heavy-handed tips as, "You shouldn't play with your bellybutton." The narrator speaks to a boy named Tettchan, who is teased about and ashamed of the fact that his bellybutton sticks out. The tone of the story vacillates between didactic statements and inane asides, such as, "the cord healed and dropped off?plop." The cartoon illustrations move from showing an umbilical cord attaching a fully clothed mother and child to a floating baby in utero. While the book's subject is of interest to many children, the treatment is uneven and uninspired. Originally published in Japan in 1985, this book has definitely lost something in translation.?Martha Topol, Traverse Area District Library, Traverse City, MI
Copyright 1995 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Booklist

Ages 3^-5. The same publisher that brought readers Everyone Poops (1993) now sets its sights a little higher, literally, if not figuratively. A boy named Tettchan wonders why he needs a belly button (especially one that sticks out). An unseen narrator goes on to explain how as a baby Tettchan was attached to his mother by a cord that fed him until he was born and the cord was snipped. The doctor medicated and taped what was left of the cord; several days later the tip healed and dropped off. A few details about keeping the belly button clean follow. The text is tame, but the artwork may raise a few eyebrows, especially the overhead view of Tettchan's mother giving birth. There are also pictures of breasts, breast-feeding, and babies' genitals. The latter are rather ambiguously drawn, but what they lack in precision, they make up for in number. If you need a book for belly button questions, this one has the answers. Ilene Cooper
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Product Details

  • Series: My Body Science
  • Hardcover: 28 pages
  • Publisher: Kane/Miller Book Publishers (October 1, 1995)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 091629160X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0916291600
  • Product Dimensions: 9.6 x 8.6 x 0.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #521,446 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Beth O'Malley on October 10, 2000
Format: Hardcover
I use this book to help foster/adopted children understand their connection to their their biological parents. The pictures and text are so concrete that children really " get it" in terms of where they "come from". Now I have many children referring to their biological mother as their bellybutton mother. This book is essesntial for adoptive families.
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Format: Hardcover
A little boy named Tettchan is embarassed by his funny-looking bellybutton and wonders what function it serves. He discovers that it was once was a cord that connected him to his mother before he was born. This simply written story discusses pregnancy, but not conception. There is a discreet illustration of Tettchan's mother giving birth---her breasts are visible, but not much else---and an explanation of how the umbilical cord was cut. Tettchan's mother then nurses him while his father watches lovingly. The author explains how the cord dries and falls off, and how each person's bellybutton is a memento of his or her birth. A very sweet little book.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
My two year old daughter *loves* this book - she'd have me read it 20 times a day if I were willing. This is a great book for explaining pregnancy and birth to a small child. I also love the fact that it portrays the mom giving birth in what appears to be an upright [squating perhaps] position - very nice. [You see mom's breasts, but nothing indiscreet or too graphic.] It also shows mom nursing the new baby, which is very nice as well. This is the best book on "where babies come from" for young children that I've found. Our whole family really enjoys it! [even after about 957 readings....] :)
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Format: Hardcover
I got this book from the library when my son was two and I was expecting. He loved it! It gave him just enough information to satisfy him and the pictures were great too. I nursed my son and was planning to nurse the new baby too. The breastfeeding pictures helped him to know what to expect from the new baby. As he could still remember nursing, this book helped him to not be jealous of the new baby's need to nurse. I wonder if those who are offended by this book nursed their babies?
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
My 3yr old twins LOVE this book. We borrowed it from the library and had to buy our own. I appreciate the simplicity with which the belly button is explained, yet covers all the details. I'd tried explaining to them before but they didn't seem to get it. Pictures go a long way sometimes :)
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book was for a friend, who was struggling with how to talk to her little ones about their bodies. This is not a book for the prudish, but it's good for those that want to teach their children frankly about where babies come from and their bodies.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This was translated from Japanese so maybe some stuff is lost in translation. It's weird to tell a kid they shouldnt play with their belly button. I do like the way it explains how babies are connected to their mothers through the umbilical cord however. And it's a good conversation starter about how babies are born.
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Format: Hardcover
My kids, ages 3, 5, and 8 were fascinated and wanted to read and re-read the book. My favorite is still Holes in the Nose, because of its artwork and humor, but this one is quite good too. It's age appropriate for young kids and allows adults to explore the world of bellybuttons with their kids.
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