I adore Karma Wilson and of all her books but I think the Bear books are my favorite. I love the way she writes in a rollicking rhyme scheme. You can’t help but feel happy when reading her books out loud. This is my favorite of all the Bear books, I think because it was the first one I ever read aloud to John. During a winter storm, forest animals sneak into a sleeping bear’s cave and have a party. Bear wakes up and at first they are all frightened but then they realize he’s just sad to have missed the party. There are several other bear books: he searches for food after a long winter’s sleep, meets a new friend, gets taken care of when sick, and meets Santa. All are excellent.
This cute book by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor was a new discovery for us. A bear wants to take his stuffed teddies to the beach but his family says there isn’t room. His solution is to empty the picnic basket of food and pack it with his teddies. In the end, he comes up with a clever solution so that he and his family can also have their picnic lunch.
The only thing wrong with this sweet book by Michael Rosen is that John, who now considers himself too old for it, has to explain at every page how you can in fact “go over the river if you just build a bridge”. I banned him from the room when I was reading it this time and David and I had a great time. It’s a classic and just as much fun on the 10th reading as the 1st. Unless you have a very literal minded concrete thinking 7 year old in your house.
The curmudgeonly bear in this book by Bonny Becker is a close runner up to the Bear Snores On bear for my “favorite picture book bear”. Bear likes to be alone and just wants to sit alone and have tea. He even has a sign on his door telling all visitors to go away. Enter mouse. Small and gray and bright-eyed. Mouse knows that bear really needs a friend and in a gently persistent way manages to convince bear of that. It’s a sweet book but also quite funny as bear tries different tactics for keeping mouse out (stopping up the bathtub drain) all to no avail. David liked seeing where mouse was going to pop up next (in the fridge, in a teakettle). There are two other books about mouse and bear that are also delightful.
A very sweet book by David Bedford suited to very young children. Little Bear isn’t sleepy (or so he says) and so he and Mother Bear take a walk and look at how the other animals are going to sleep. It’s also a lovely book with beautiful illustrations of many other Arctic animals.
This book by Becky Baines isn’t just about bears but is a fun non-fiction look at animals and sleep. It covers the different places animals can sleep and hibernation. The text is easy to listen to rhymes accompanied by gorgeous photos.
Check out what others are reading with their kids at Read Aloud Thursday at Hope is the Word.