Helquist, Brett. 2011. BEDTIME FOR BEAR. New York: HarperCollins. ISBN 9780060502058 [Suggested Grade Levels PreK-2]
Just as Bear lays down for his long winter’s nap, his friends urge him to come outside and join them in one last adventure before spring. Bear attempts to stave off his friends’ request, but eventually they force him out of bed. Though angry at first, bear “slips” into fun and enjoys a snowy day of winter activities with his raccoon buddies. When the day finally draws to a close, bear is not the only one ready for bed.
Helquist’s mixed media illustrations, involving various layouts and speech bubbles, play off of the humorous onomatopoeia-filled text resulting in a comical presentation that children and adults will both enjoy.
Play a twist on the game “Quiet Mouse” to determine who is the best hibernator. Encourage children to keep their eyes closed for as long as they can while you tempt them with various sounds. Once children opens their eyes, allow them to help you watch for other children as you continue until all children have opened their eyes. Suggestions for noises include: ringing a bell, opening a package/present, words/phrases such as “Look!” or “Eww! What is that?!”
Once all children have opened their eyes, discuss why it was hard for them to keep their eyes closed and why it might have been hard for Bear to sleep. Next, discuss the importance of getting plenty of sleep and consequences of not getting enough sleep. Finally, brainstorm some solutions for ignoring and/or eliminating noise when trying to sleep.
Other books for children about bears and hibernation:
Fleming, Denise. TIME TO SLEEP. ISBN 9780805067675
Hall, Margaret. HIBERNATION. ISBN 0736896163
Wilson, Karma. BEAR SNORES ON. Ill. by Jane Chapman. ISBN 0689831870
By Maria Cahill