LOVE, MAMA is fiction, but the illustrations in the book are based on my research into the animals and built environment on real Antarctic islands. I even had the chance to talk with scientists who work in the Southern Ocean about the animals they saw in their work - and what kind of souvenirs are available in Antarctic research station gift shops.
Chinstrap penguins actually collect rocks. They will even give them to each other as gifts. (And also fight over them, like human siblings.)
Kipling and his Mama live on an imaginary island in a real part of the world. Chinstrap penguins make their homes on the rocky islands in the Weddell Sea - between the southern tip of Argentina and Antarctica. All of the animals in LOVE, MAMA live or migrate in this part of the southern ocean.
This is the southern-most post office in South America - located in Tierra del Fuego National Park, Argentina. It is staffed by human postal workers, but it looks like birds and seals could easily take over.
Interested in learning more?
Download this free educational guide created by Deb Gonzales! It's full of STEAM-infused activities and printables for K-2 students. All are aligned with common core standards.