Bill Martin Jr and Eric Carle's classic Bear books have been a hit with children for many generations, and have sold more than eleven million copies. This wonderful compilation CD brings together the beloved first three Bear booksBrown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See?; Polar Bear, Polar Bear, What Do You Hear?; and Panda Bear, Panda Bear, What Do You See?and includes the newest addition, Baby Bear, Baby Bear, What Do You See? The stories are read with warmth and humor by Academy Award-winning actress and mother Gwyneth Paltrow.
This title has Common Core connections.
About the Author
Bill Martin Jr was an elementary-school principal, a teacher, writer, and poet. His many bestselling classics are a testament to his ability to speak directly to children and have left a legacy to generations to come. Eric Carle's innovative books have earned him a place in the canon of classic children's literature. Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? was the first book he illustrated; he then went on to write and illustrate The Very Hungry Caterpillar and The Grouchy Ladybug, as well as many other books for children.
Reading Group Guide
The art in all the Bear books is unique and done in the traditional Eric Carle collage method. Have children replicate such art by painting white tissue paper with various bold colors and textures. Once dry, have them cut the paper into various images of choice to create a collage-style work of art.
Create Your Own Book
Popular zoo animals are featured in Polar Bear, Polar Bear, What Do You Hear? Ask children to describe other animals found at a zoo (giraffe, gorilla, tiger). Create your own version of the book. Children can work in pairs or individually. Distribute any size piece of oaktag to each group and have them place their artwork in the center of the oaktag. Then cut out a rectangular piece of paper or oaktag to cover the art. Adhere it at the top creating a flap to cover the art. Draw black lines on the flap making each cover look like a cage in the zoo. The text should be written above and below the flap. For example: Gorilla, gorilla what do you hear? I hear a tiger roaring at me. Lift the flap and there is a caged tiger!
The last page of Polar Bear, Polar Bear, What Do You Hear? portrays children dancing with animal masks. Have children create their own animal masks using any medium of choice, such as paper plates, construction paper, etc. Have children select animals from any of the Bear books. When the masks are finished, the children can march in an animal parade acting out each animal's sound and/or action (a mule deer running, etc.).
What Do You See?
After reading all the Bear books, reread the last line in Panda Bear, Panda Bear, What Do You See?: "Dreaming Child, Dreaming Child, what do you see?" Ask the children what they see in their dreams. Continue the book by having each child complete the sentence: I see ________.
Adopt an Endangered Animal
Panda Bear, Panda Bear, What Do You See? addresses the issue of endangered species and highlights ten out of five thousand possible animals in jeopardy. Discuss the concept of an endangered animal: what it means to be endangered; what should be done; what we can do as a community; the importance of preserving all living things. Decide upon a course of action that would draw awareness to such an issue. One activity might be to adopt an endangered animal.
The Five Senses
The Bear books highlight two out of the five sensessight and sound. Use these books to launch a lesson on the five senses, in particular taste, touch, and smell. Challenge children to write (or recite) what the various animals would eat, feel, and smell. For example, Baby Bear, Baby Bear, What Do You Eat? would highlight what each of the native North American animals might consume. Have fun adding adjectives to describe the food!
The animals in each Bear book appear in a particular sequence. Challenge children to remember the order of appearance of each animal. Have the children draw each animal character. Children may want to work in pairs, as there are ten animals per book. Once the art is completed, then begin by reading the first sentence of the book and have each animal pair stand when appropriate. See if they can remember the correct order for each cast of animal characters!
Brown Bear's Birthday Party!
Celebrate Brown Bear's 40th anniversary by throwing a bear birthday party. Have children bring their favorite bear to the party or create papier-mâché replicas of any of the animals found in the Bear books. Read the Bear books, act them out to music, eat, play games, and enjoy the celebration!
As much as I enjoy audio books I'll admit that my initial reaction to this one wasn't overly enthusiastic. The first in this series was written forty-some years ago, and has captivated generations. It has been reprinted almost countless times in a variety of editions. The Bear stories are known and loved by millions. To top that, what could these stories possibly be without seeing Eric Carle's iconic illustrations? I learned the answer to that question with the first few minutes of this reading by Academy-Award winning actress Gwyneth Paltrow. She offers a warm, winning narration of the Bear stories that enchants both young and older ears. So captivating is her voice and delivery that the stories come to life in listener's minds as if for the first time. It's a special treat to have all of the tales available on one CD, there couldn't be a more perfect bedtime story. - Gail Cooke
I would like this to be a practical review, because I almost don't buy this CD, since there is not much info about it and the tracks are not detailed, but it's oh so worth it!
**First four tracks are the books in English
**Tracks 5-8 are all four books in Spanish (It doesn't state whose voice it is, but she sounds like a native speaker, the lady is actually funnier than Gwyneth!)
**Track 9 is Bill Martin Jr. himself reading "Brown Bear" (I didn't like it, but it's interesting)
**Tracks 10 and 11 are interviews with Eric Carle.
So, I hope this helps! and, don't hesitate, go ahead and buy it!