My tub is fun,
and I’m the one
who runs the tugboat there.
It’s tied with rope
beside the soap
until Mom scrubs my hair.
But when she’s through,
here’s what I do.
I free my boat and go….
….right to the spot
that’s not too hot
and only children know.
The young child featured in Bathtime Fun! takes a ride on his/her imagination with a toy tugboat in the bathtub. The child envisions meeting up with creatures from the sea and beyond. He/she discovers a tiger, a snake, a giant squid, an octopus, apes, monkeys, a bat, a parakeet, seals, whales, eels, fish, and a hippo stuck in the mud.
In addition to the animals, the child also dreams up some exotic locales. In one place, the trees grow lollipops, candy canes, and other treats. He/she is hanging out in jungles with the monkeys and beautiful exotic fruits or riding a whale’s tail in the ocean, surrounded by colourful aquatic creatures. The satisfying bathtime is followed up by a kiss and a good story before the child falls asleep in bed.
The full-page, full-colour illustrations are exquisite. They support the text with vivid colours, while, at the same time, they let the reader know that the scene is imaginary. Elements from reality are cleverly interspersed within the pictures. For example, there is a shower curtain in the surfing scene, and the waterfall in another picture originates from a water faucet.
The text is written in poetic format with the three line stanzas having an AAB rhyme scheme.
Teachers and caregivers can use Bathtime Fun! to talk about poetry and imagination. Young children will enjoy reading the story or having the story read to them. They will be familiar with comforting routines described in the book.
Elizabeth Brown, a now retired teacher-librarian, formerly was employed in Winnipeg School Division in Winnipeg, Manitoba.