Contrary to myth and legend, there is no typical family. Now, YouTubers Rose + Rosie teamed up with writer Jefferey Spivey, creating an inclusive kids’ book, Sea The Love: A Book About Families. And, you can download it for free and read it to your children ASAP.
Because YouTube influencers Rose + Rosie were expecting their first baby, they decided to write a book exploring “nontraditional” families. Instead of hyper realism, though, they opted for an underwater classroom: Sea The Love features Dash the Dolphin discovering that all his fellow sea students (from stingrays to starfish) have diverse families.
While Rose + Rosie based the undersea concept on their nursery theme, writer Jefferey Spivey found that these characters offered a way of easily guaranteeing inclusion.
“Using sea animals stemmed from the desire to be as inclusive as possible. If we used human or human-like characters, there was a strong possibility that we’d leave someone out,” Spivey explains to Parentology. “Sea animals gave us a fun, creative, and visually stimulating way to talk about diversity and still represent several different types of nontraditional families. Using sea animals also gave us an opportunity to work in some small marine biology facts, like the age of the teacher Mrs. Olive, who’s a 200-year-old green sea turtle.”
Exploring All Facets of LGBTQ+ Famlies
For Spivey, many of the book’s themes were deeply personal.
“Currently, my husband and I are enrolled in fostering/adoption classes — at the start of our parenting journey. I wanted to ensure that these blended families were represented in the book, and Callisto the crab (who was adopted by a family of angelfish) gave me a chance to do that,” Spivey says. “The factors that lead children to adoption and/or foster care can be devastating, but I wanted to celebrate the moment when these kids find loving permanent homes. I imagine that one day we’ll be able to read Sea the Love to our children and use Callisto’s story to help them process their own experience.”
The final goal for Sea The Love is to open up a conversation about different types of families, pointing out the commonalities between them rather than the mere structural differences. This makes it good storytime reading for EVERY type of family.
“I love that Sea the Love opens up a conversation about all sorts of family types because that diversity is still underrepresented in children’s books. As a Black LGBTQ+ person, I know the importance of seeing yourself reflected in the literature you read, and it’s my hope that kids in nontraditional families feel empowered and seen because of this book,” Spivey says.
You can download the Sea The Love book by Rose + Rosie for free at Fiverr. Learn more about the book below.