Welcome to Paula's Preschool and Kindergarten! My class blog is the place I share information about some of the fun learning activities we are doing at school. I hope to provide parents with insight into what we are doing, and why, and to share ideas with other early childhood educators. Please don't use the photos or text of this blog without permission, but please do use any ideas you find useful. Thank you for stopping by!

Saturday, January 2, 2016

Sleepy Bears

I've been pulling down books for January - you know, all the fun polar animal books, snowmen stories, books about hibernation... winter themes!  As I gathered my books, I noticed I have a LOT of books about sleepy bears.

Here are a few favorites:

Image result for sleepy bears book

I LOVE this one by Mem Fox!  Mother bear prepares her six little cubs for bed, telling each one their own bedtime story, custom made for them.  This is a sweet story that young children will adore, and will surely relate to at least one of the cubs (princess, explorer, acrobat, dessert lover, pirate and baby).  There is a very satisfying surprise at the end, and your little ones will be calm and ready for sleep by the end of it.

When I read Sleepy Bears, I am reminded of something Mem Fox wrote in Reading Magic, a book she wrote for adults, about reading to and with children:

     "We can achieve great things emotionally if the last line is a definite dismissal, a
     farewell.  As we say it, we're releasing our listeners from their contact with us.
     Without this drawn-out final line, our listeners will feel an uncomfortable sort of
     incompleteness.  A rapid finish feels oddly wrong.  A slow finish is an absolutely
     delicious experience.  Both teller and listeners find themselves in a state of bliss,
     akin to "living happily ever after."
                                                                                                          (Chapter 6, Reading Magic)

Good Night, Baby Bear

You probably know Frank Asch from the classic Happy Birthday, Moon.  His books are just right for the preschool crowd, very sweet and loving, and this is no exception.  When mother bear tells baby bear it is time to hibernate in a cave, he has a difficult time with the change to his sleep routine - and if you have young children, you can relate!  Mother bear is patient and loving, and solves the problems that are preventing her little one from sleeping.

Time to Sleep

I've mentioned Denise Fleming's books before, and I'm sure I will again!  Once again she has paired exquisite illustrations with text that is almost poetic, and created a perfect children's book.  Bear - and the other animals in the story - notice various signs that winter is approaching, and that it is time for them to hibernate.  There is a lot of science woven into this lovely piece of fiction, and you could use it to teach children about seasons, hibernation, or woodland animals.  I used to use this one when we learned about the letter L, because there is a ladybug in the story who settles under a log to rest.  We made a letter L craft that went beautifully with the concept.  Here's a picture:

Surely you've met the Bear books by Karma Wilson?  There are several books in the series, each of them as much fun as the next.  We recently enjoyed the Christmas version, Bear Stays Up For Christmas, at our library story time.  The children loved the story and illustrations!

With all these sleeping bear stories, I was inspired to make a cute sleepy bear craft too.  (There's a mini book about animals that sleep in winter, hidden under his nose!)


Next time I'm going to show you some of my favorite polar bear books!  I'd love to hear about the stories your students love to hear too - please let me know in the comments!

***I do not use affiliate links, and am not reimbursed in any way for providing links.  I've chosen to link these products in order to make it easier for you to find them, if you wish.  There are many, many retailers that will be happy to help you locate these books, the links are merely suggestions.***

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