Follow along as we “row” classic children’s literature with Before Five in a Row. Learn more about BFIAR here.
“We’re Going on a Bear Hunt” is a story about a dad who takes his children on a bear hunt and has to overcome several obstacles along the way.
Notes & Thoughts
I got this book for $1 through a Scholastic book order and it has to be one of the best dollars I’ve ever spent! This book has provided so much fun and laughter in our lives. The illustrations in the book are beautiful and open the door to so many conversations about different types of families, helping each other, cause and effect and feeling scared.
The book was an instant hit after the first reading because it’s repetitive, catchy and silly, but about halfway through rowing the book I discovered the YouTube video of the author Michael Rosen reading the book and since then we can’t ever go back to just reading the story. Now, it’s an experience with facial expressions, hand motions, sound effects … so much fun!
- Thick, oozy mud: We made mud with sand from our sand table mixed with water. Gabriella enjoyed using a shovel to fill the bowl and mixing it with a spoon. Her favorite part was standing in the mud and saying “squelch, squerch!” over and over.
- Wooden bear puppet: I attached a pre-painted, wooden bear I found at Hobby Lobby to a wooden dowel for a simple puppet. We used this puppet all week long. She loved hunting for the bear after I hid it or hiding the bear herself and bringing him out when we read the story and got to the page with the bear. She liked the bear puppet so much we made him some friends to play with.
- Discussion about different types of families: The story shows a dad and his four children going on the bear hunt so we used the opportunity to talk about how families can come in all different sizes and configurations, but what is important is that all families love each other.
- Nature scavenger hunt: I printed a nature scavenger hunt sheet from Homeschool Encouragement and we went on a walk to look for the items on the list. Gabriella absolutely loved this. She loves walking anyway and looking for the items was a fun challenge. I can see us doing this again and again. The best part about our hunt was that we saw a huge, real owl up in a tree a few houses down from us. We got to hear him and see him turn his head and fly- it was awesome!
- Author’s storytelling video: Michael Rosen tells the story in this YouTube video in a slightly creepy, yet wonderfully entertaining way that captivated Gabriella’s attention and brought the story to life. She would have watched this 100 times if I would have let her.
- Dramatic storytelling: We acted out the story together similar all the way from squelching through the mud to running to the bedroom to hiding under the covers.
- Bear mask craft: I used a bear mask template printed on cardstock and Gabriella decorated the bear with “one shiny, wet nose” using a do-a-dot marker, “two fuzzy, brown ears” by gluing brown yarn to the paper and “two big, goggly eyes” by gluing two wiggly eyes to the bear. I intended it to be a mask, but she really wanted the eyes on it, so we obviously didn’t use it as a mask.